JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Marines and Sailors worked together Friday to make sure they’re ready when called upon.
Hundreds in the Navy and Marine Corps also collaborated in a training exercise at locations all over the planet. Two of those locations involved were in Jacksonville — Blount Island and Naval Station Mayport. Those who trained Friday said they take pride in their duties.
“We are the heartbeat of the operation. We keep things going in and out. We make it work,” said Mark Freeman, Machinist Mate First Class.
The men and women of Two Marine Expeditionary Force and Expeditionary Strike Group Two took care of their assigned task and probably tried to impress the top brass.
News4Jax asked the sailors and Marines to tell us about their jobs and why they are important. They were able to show us what they do as they prepared to defend the nation and our allies.
“We have our equipment staged forward all over the world, and we could be called forward at a moment’s notice to be able to deliver that power to the Warfighter," said Lt. Commander Robert Leftwich of the Amphibious Construction Battalion 2.
Hitting the beach is one element, but loading equipment then sending it into action includes making sure the equipment works when it has to. The exercises make sure the teamwork needed for the efficient execution of a mission comes together.
“The capabilities that we bring to the table are to ensure that we can get access in any austere environment,” Leftwich said. "We don’t need an improved port facility. We bring it all. We can bring it to the beach and then we can make that beach what we need in order to support that combat power and project that forward.”
The Marines Corps is very proud of its heritage and capabilities, working in concert with the Navy.
The men and women act as a cross-functional team under the 6th Fleet.