Marine Corps Air Station Yuma


Hometown: Yuma, AZ, US

Marine Corps Air Station Yuma
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Combat Engineers Make Impact


Combat Engineers Make Impact


Story by Cpl. Brendan King

Combat Engineers Make Impact YUMA, Ariz. - Clouds of dirt sprinkler into the air, and a thunderous explosion swept across the secluded training area of Yuma Proving Grounds, in Yuma Ariz., as multiple grenades were detonated by combat engineers from Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Ariz., Tuesday.

Approximately 30 Marines with Marine Wing Support Squadron 371 participated in the live-fire training exercise utilizing the M203 grenade launcher, the M32 multiple grenade launcher, and the MK19 automatic grenade launcher.

“It was great Marine Corps training,” said Staff Sgt. Brandon Wood, the combat engineer operations chief with MWSS-371. “As Marines, we’re always looking to improve. Especially as combat engineers, it’s important that we know the tools and aspects of today’s combat.”
To ensure the Marines were fully instructed in safety measures and proper handling methods, their training began by firing dummy rounds that detonated into small bursts of smoke when they impacted. Once the engineers were comfortable with their technique, they began firing High Explosive, Dual Purpose (HEDP) rounds.

“It’s knowledge and knowledge is power,” said Lance Cpl. Keith Whitaker, a combat engineer with MWSS-371. “Being out here just today, I learned a lot more than I thought I was going to learn.”
Firing and understanding the capabilities of a vast array of weaponry is one of the distinguishing characteristics of the Marine Corps. However, this training is not just about firing rounds down range, but working to condition the warrior mind-set necessary to accomplish the mission during combat at any given moment.

According to Wood, having multiple opportunities to work with the weapons systems paved the road for success in combat zones because decisions originate from the fundamentals of this training.
“Every Marine should be trained with these weapon systems,” said Cpl. Benjamin Rodriguez, a combat engineer with MWSS-371. “A lot of Marines use these weapons at Marine Combat Training (MCT) and then never see them again during their career.”

Overall, preparation is crucial for Marines to become proficient with various weapon systems, and that education will increase the unit’s ability to operate across a broad spectrum of missions.

Recent Video

Combat Engineers Get Savvy with Grenade Launchers Combat Engineers Get Savvy with Grenade Launchers
Combat engineers with Marine Wing Support Squadron 371, stationed out of Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Ariz., took part in a field training exercise on July 30 - in...
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Marines from Marine Corps Air Station Yuma wrap up reclamation operations in and around the impact site of an AV-8B Harrier II aircraft that crashed into a...
Broll: Marines Continue Recovery Operation of Crashed AV-8B Harrier II From Residential area in Imperial, California. Broll: Marines Continue Recovery Operation of Crashed...
Marines from Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, AZ., continue their recovery operation of an AV-8B Harrier II aircraft that crashed into a residential area in Imperial,...
Marines Conduct Recovery Operation to Retrieve Crashed AV-8B Harrier II from Residential Area in Imperial, California Marines Conduct Recovery Operation to Retrieve Crashed...
Marines from Marine Corps Air Station Yuma continued in the recovery of an AV-8B Harrier II aircraft that crashed into a residential area of Imperial, Calif., June...


Recent Audio

Maj. Lieberman
Maj. Lieberman talks to reporters from Airplane Geeks about his background as an aviator in the Marine Corps, becoming an instructor and leading the F-35B training...
Lt Col. Jeffrey Scott
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Bill Toledo Interview part 1
Navajo Code Talker Bill Toledo is interviewed by Capt. Breanne Cave about his life and how he joined the Marine Corps, what he did while in, and what the Navajo Code...
Bill Toledo Interview part 2
Navajo Code Talker Bill Toledo is interviewed by Capt. Breanne Cave about his life and how he joined the Marine Corps, what he did while in, and what the Navajo Code...
Bill Toledo interview part 3
Navajo Code Talker Bill Toledo is interviewed by Capt. Breanne Cave about his life and how he joined the Marine Corps, what he did while in, and what the Navajo Code...
Bill Toledo interview part 4
Navajo Code Talker Bill Toledo is interviewed by Capt. Breanne Cave about his life and how he joined the Marine Corps, what he did while in, and what the Navajo Code...


Recent News Stories

Combat Engineers Make Impact Combat Engineers Make Impact
Clouds of dirt sprinkler into the air, and a thunderous explosion swept across the secluded training area of Yuma Proving Grounds, in Yuma Ariz., as multiple grenades...
MCAS Yuma Marines Go Gung-Ho for San Diego Comic-Con MCAS Yuma Marines Go Gung-Ho for San Diego Comic-Con
As part of a Single Marine Program volunteer opportunity, approximately 100 Marines and sailors from Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Ariz., traveled to the San Diego...
MCAS Yuma Bids Adieu to Ron Pearce MCAS Yuma Bids Adieu to Ron Pearce
On Friday evening, at the Sonoran Pueblo Consolidated Club aboard Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Ariz., station personnel said goodbye to one of their most beloved...
Our Past Honored: Local 4th of July Flag Raising Ceremony Pays Homage to the Military Our Past Honored: Local 4th of July Flag Raising...
Since World War II, Yuma has become a central location for military training and aviation, bringing thousands of service members and their families to settle here....
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Recent Photos

Combat Engineers Make Impact Combat Engineers Make Impact
Staff Sgt. Brandon Wood, the operations chief for Marine Wing Support Squadron 371 combat engineers based out of Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Ariz., verifies...
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Marines from Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 13, based out of Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Ariz., volunteered their time Friday to help prepare Castle Dome...
MCAS Yuma Service Members and Civilians Beast it Out MCAS Yuma Service Members and Civilians Beast it Out
The Marine Corps Community Services Athletics Department held its annual bench press competition today aboard Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Ariz. This competition is...
Local Bass Fishermen Educate MCAS Yuma Local Bass Fishermen Educate MCAS Yuma
Marine Corps Community Services aboard Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Ariz., invited representatives from the Yuma Desert Bass Anglers Club to educate service members...
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Marines and sailors from Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Ariz., receive the materials they need to conduct volunteer operations at the San Diego Convention Center,...
MCAS Yuma Chef of the Quarter MCAS Yuma Chef of the Quarter
Gunnery Sgt. Randolph Revert, the staff non-commissioned officer in charge of the Marine Training Unit aboard Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, judges the presentation...