News: Marines hit Fort Bragg back roads to recon supply routes
Story by Pfc. Sullivan Laramie
CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. - “Woo-hoo!” The shout filled the Mine Resistant All-Terrain Vehicle as it shook and jumped on the rugged, dirt trails of Fort Bragg, N.C., while the Marines inside scouted the area for the 10th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division hidden among fields and trees of the base, March 13.
Marines with Combat Logistics Regiment 25’s logistics combat element, or LCE, sent out reconnaissance convoys to search for clear roads between the element’s base of operations and 10th Marines’ artillery batteries during the joint training exercise Rolling Thunder.
The LCE carried out resupply and refuel missions, and responded to calls to pick up and repair broken down vehicles and artillery.
The three-hour convoys, which consisted of Marines with the LCE’s general support motor transport detachment and three of their vehicles, took place over the course of three days to test the roads in different weather conditions.
“There were some roads that we found we weren’t going to be able to use,” said Staff Sgt. Joseph L. Sailer, a Monroe, N.C., native and the motor transportation operations chief for the LCE. “We were able to locate some roads that could support our types of trucks in a convoy, however. We took three different vehicles to test each on the roads and three routes to check the terrain and our capabilities at night.”
The recon missions were not only set up to assess vehicle maneuverability and the drivers’ skills, but to find routes around dangerous areas in the area of operations, or AO.
Marines identified roadways, looked for terrain features and marked coordinates to figure out the locations of 10th Marines’ encampments.
“One of the things we have to achieve is familiarization with the AO,” said Capt. Robert A. Foulkes, a native of Long Island, N.Y., and the LCE commander. “We have to know where the impact zones are because we are supporting an artillery regiment and because it is a hazardous area.”
The Marines on the recon operations located both of 10th Marines’ battalions and the headquarters battery with relative ease, said Sailer.
Since the LCE established quick, safe paths to each of 10th Marines’ resupply points, it was able to respond with speed and efficiency when the regiment requested fuel, supplies, water or maintenance.