News: Quantico Viper prepares Marines for deployment
Story by Lance Cpl. Emmanuel Ramos
QUANTICO, Va. -- Marines from reserve units as far as Washington State came to Marine Corps Base Quantico for pre-deployment training, called Quantico Viper, Nov. 7.
The training, which last 14 days, covers everything from cultural training to Humvee Egress Assistance Training.
“It’s all about getting these Marines in the right mindset for what’s ahead,” said Maj. Cliff Russ, the officer in charge of Logistics Combat Element, 4th Logistics Support Battalion. “We’re making sure that these Marines have the most up to date training.”
Marines going through Quantico Viper are broken into two groups. Alpha group is preparing to deploy to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, and Bravo group is preparing to deploy as part of a Special Purpose Marine Air Ground Task Force to Italy and Africa.
“I’m excited to be going,” said Cpl. Victor Tamino, a maintenance engineer with Alpha group, 4th Maintenance Bn., 4th LSB. “This is my second time going through Quantico Viper and the training has grown a lot from the first time I came through in 2008. I’ve learned a lot of new information that I know will help me when I head overseas.”
The MAGTF will be conducting a variety of humanitarian missions as well as helping train foreign armies.
“This is all part of the long war concept,” Russ said.”This benefits not only our country, but helps other nations as well.”
Even though both groups of Marines have different missions, both are brought up to speed on improvised explosive devices.
“IED training is constant,” said Dan Arnold, counter IED instructor, Camp Lejeune, N.C. “They are always evolving, and it is the main threat that our troops face while on deployment.”
A large aspect of Quantico Viper is for the Marines to build a strong relationship with each other.
“Most of these Marines come from units from all over the country,” said Master Sgt. Thomas Parrella, inspector instructor staff, 4th Maintenance Bn., 4th Marine Logistics Group, Charlotte, N.C “It’s important that they build that band of brotherhood before they deploy.”
Marines are able to build that bond by looking up to non-commissioned officers who have been on previous deployments for guidance.
“I tell my Marines to constantly keep a fresh eye and don’t become complacent,” said Sgt. Richard Rubio, a Marine with Alpha Company, Beach Terminal Operations Reinforcement, 4th LSB. “At the end of the day my mission is for all of them to come back to their families in one piece.”