Camp Pendleton, CA --
Guts were tested as Marines with 1st and 6th Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company rappelled more than 50 feet down from towers while conducting Helicopter Rope Suspension Training during a three-week ANGLICO Basic Course aboard Camp Pendleton, California March 9, 2015.
The ABC is a three-section course implementing the basics of motor transportation, communications and call-for-fire techniques.
The first week of the course consists of learning how to use different types of radios, establishing radio communication, call-for-fire, land navigation and introducing Marines to forward observing.
“Week one was mostly understanding how to get communications, how it’s effective to us as small unit leaders and how it affects us on a big scale,” said Sgt. Robert Vandenburgh, platoon sergeant, 6th ANGLICO, 2nd Brigade. “Anyone in ANGLICO needs to be able to pick up a radio and communicate what’s going on.”
Marines receive more hands-on training with communication equipment during the second week of training and are also introduced to life-saving medical procedures, referred to as Combat Lifesaver. Following practical application with radios and medical training is a culminating event at the end of the second week, which tests them on everything they have learned so far.
During the third and final week of training, Marines learn ANGLICO history and the different things unit has accomplished in the past.
“We’re in the second week of the ANGLICO Basic Course and we’re starting off the week by taking the Marines out to the field for the next three days,” said Sgt. Jeremy Schacht, 1st ANGLICO. “Today mainly consists of the fast roping and rappel tower as well as donning and clearing gas masks. We’ll be following that with a hike up to one of our ranges where we’ll continue the next two days with some CLS training and weapon familiarization.”
The Marines ultimately learn their specific job and also the different jobs of other Marines. This arduous training ensures everyone is ready to deploy and take charge regardless of the task set before them.
“This particular training is important because with our particular unit and skill set, we are always on call,” Schacht said. “You should be able to take any one of the Marines, regardless of background or military occupational specialty, and that Marine should be able to fill the shoes of the Marine that he or she is replacing.”
Reservist Marines with 6th ANGLICO also participated in the HRS training alongside their active duty counterparts. The training is advantageous to all of the Marines regardless of rank or duty station.
“I think this training is very beneficial for the 6th ANGLICO Marines because we don’t know what it’s like to be an Anglican,” said Vandenburgh. “Coming here and being able to see the culture of ANGLICO and understanding all of the duties and assets is essential to having information to bring back to our own unit and make us better.”
Marines with the reserve unit are learning new skills and techniques to take back home to strengthen their units and the Marines that were unable to participate in this training.
“I honestly think this course is amazing because you don’t get an opportunity to participate in these events on a regular basis,” said Sgt. Dylan Demain, armory chief, 1st ANGLICO. “You learn how to operate in the unit that you’re with, all units operate differently. Every unit should have training like this to familiarize the Marines with the purpose of the unit.”