News: Native of South Amboy helps save Marines' lives
Story by Pfc. Daniel Hosack
WASHINGTON - A native of South Amboy, N.J. is helping save the lives of Marines here by sharing his skills as a Navy corpsman.
25-year-old Petty Officer 2nd Class Michael Pappas is one of three Navy corpsmen stationed at Marine Barracks Washington, D.C. who administered the Combat Lifesaver Course to 30 infantry Marines Jan. 31. The course teaches critical battlefield first-aid techniques designed to save the lives of Marines injured in combat.
The three-day course gives Marines the hands-on instruction needed to provide life-saving first-aid in combat. Throughout the course, the Marines were taught how to identify burns, treat bone fractures and wounds and other common battlefield injuries. The Marines were also taught how to apply a tourniquet, open an airway and how to evacuate fellow injured Marines off the battlefield.
“I think it’s a great course because it teaches the Marines to take care of each other if something happens to one of them,” said Pappas.
Pappas who served in Afghanistan from 2010 to 2011, said he believes the three-day course was time well spent stating that the skills learned throughout the course increase the probability of Marines returning home if injured in combat.
Pappas was the lead instructor for the course, but conducted the training alongside other corpsmen allowing the Marines to separate into small groups for one-on-one instruction.
“A course like this one is vital because it increases the amount of Marines we can get back alive to their families,” said Petty Officer 3rd Class Charles Barbarick, a hospital corpsman at Marine Barracks Washington, D.C., who taught the course with Pappas. “Our role is to ensure the well-being of mind, body and spirit of all our Marines.”
In his regular duties Pappas is responsible for the medical care and the overall health and wellness of the Marines he serves with as well as the management of the units “sick call,” the military’s equivalent of an urgent care center.
Pappas plans on staying in the Navy and entering the Navy Nurse Corps.
His awards include a Navy Good Conduct Medal, a National Defense Service Medal, an Afghan Campaign Medal and a Global War on Terrorism Service Medal.
Barracks Marines and Sailors support ceremonial and security missions in the nation’s Capital. Each year, they support more than 30 parades and hundreds of ceremonies and functions to include funerals and sporting events across the country and globe while maintaining proficiency in their respective military occupations and meeting their annual training requirements.