News: DF14 completed, CLC-36 departs Camp Fuji
Story by Cpl. Antonio Rubio
IWAKUNI, Japan - Combat Logistics Company 36 Marines and augments returned to Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan, July 29, from Exercise Dragon Fire 2014 at Combined Arms Training Center Camp Fuji, Japan.
Dragon Fire is CLC-36’s annual Battle Skills Training exercise that focuses on improving the individual and collective combat skills of CLC-36 service members with an emphasis on weapons familiarization training.
Capt. Roderick J. Singleton Jr., CLC-36 commanding officer, said the difference between Dragon Fire and Marine Combat Training is that Marines are now in the fleet with responsibilities outside of training, so they need to understand how to do their job and how to get out there and be a warfighter.
“Exercise Dragon Fire 14’s purpose was to get basic skills training, reinforcement of being a riflemen and the common skills that every Marine needs to polish up at times,” said Singleton.
With DF as the only stand-alone exercise CLC-36 conducts, it allows for a complete mission plan tailored to what will help all service members, from the commanding officer to the most junior member, learn to operate as a unit.
“We hit all the base lines that we wanted for training,” said Singleton. “We got to do (Enhanced Marksmanship Program) shoots, crew serve weapon shoots, land (navigation) and terrain appreciation and even got the opportunity to ride in (Assault Amphibious Vehicles). We did a lot, learned a lot and strengthened ourselves as a company.”
Dragon Fire 14 was a fast paced training exercise that helped distinguish the Marine mentality and exemplify what makes the Marine Corps different from the other branches, according to 1st Lt. Chase Long, supply officer with CLC-36.
“Other branches may have a logistics company, but they have to pull security from other parts of their branch. Marines don’t do that,” said Long. “We’re supposed to be able to do everything ourselves and that’s what makes us great. We have confidence that if a major conflict happened tomorrow and our Marines deployed, they would be well trained and ready to accomplish whatever mission is assigned to them.”
With the conclusion of DF14, CLC-36 Marines and augments received and carried out multiple orders, executed along established timelines and proficiently handled multiple weapon systems during classes and live fire. They also convoyed more than 500 miles across Japan for a period of two days on two occasions.
“I definitely want to double all of our numbers for next year,” said Singleton. “I want to get more personnel out there, more ammunition and do it bigger and better, and maybe a little bit longer because it was a good opportunity to get to the field and prepare Marines for real life combat.”