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    Twentynine Palms Marines train at Production Plant Barstow

    Twentynine Palms Marines train at Production Plant Barstow

    Photo By Keith Hayes | Private First Class Christian Morales, from Houston, works on the M777 Lightweight...... read more read more



    Story by Keith Hayes 

    Marine Corps Logistics Base Barstow

    Troops from Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms, Calif., are currently training at Production Plant Barstow, Marine Depot Maintenance Command, on the Yermo Annex of Marine Corps Logistics Base Barstow.

    Sergeant Jose Garciacerda is in charge of the 11 Marines from Combat Logistics Company 13, Combat Logistics Regiment 15, 1st Marine Logistics Group, while they are getting advanced training at the PPB facility.

    Garciacerda’s military occupational specialty is an amphibious assault vehicle mechanic, so the native of Milwaukee appreciates the help he and his Marines are getting from the artisans at the plant.

    “We’re hoping to gain some knowledge here and apply it to our shop,” he said. “We’re trying to become more efficient.”

    Lance Corporals Bailey Hursh and John Rin are working on AAV transmissions under the tutelage of heavy equipment mechanic Walter Easterling, who hails from Laurinburg, N.C.

    Hursh, a native of Fort Wayne, Ind., said the training gives them an opportunity to expand their skills.

    “We’re learning how to work on AAV transmissions because we don’t have them at our shop very often,” he said. “I’ve learned something from the artisans and I believe the civilians have learned from us as well.”

    Seattle born Rin said he welcomes the training.

    “I’m hoping to learn a little bit of everything including how to run the dynamometer,” he said. The “dyno” for short, is a device that measures force, torque and power of an engine.

    “The plant has plenty of tools and equipment we don’t have at Twentynine Palms,” Rin added. “I think we should definitely come back here more than once a year. The mechanics are awesome.”

    Corporals Michael Eldridge, Brandon Fairbank and Ross Jablonski are tank mechanics working under the direction of journeyman mechanic Adam Herrera of Barstow.

    Eldridge, from Framingham, Mass., said the group is currently working on part of the fuel pump assembly for the M88A2 HERCULES armored recovery vehicle which is capable of towing the massive M1 Abrams tanks. The HERCULES acronym stands for heavy equipment recovery combat utility lift and evacuation system.

    “It’s good training and a good way to learn stuff I’d never learn anywhere else,” Eldridge said.

    Fairbank said the training has been valuable for him.

    “We’re getting more in-depth training on the engines and making our jobs a little easier,” the native of Crockett, Va., said. “You learn little tips and tricks to help you out.”

    Corporal Jablonski, from Enfield, Conn., feels the training is very interesting.

    “I feel I’m contributing something to the warfighter,” he said.

    Tobin Anderson is a Computer Numeric Controlled Machinist teaching two Marines at his shop. He thinks the training should be a regular event.

    “I think they should come here on a regular basis and stay longer,” the retired Air Force tech sergeant from Aberdeen, Wash., said. “They’re quite well trained already. I try and teach them new techniques and setups.”

    Lance Corporal Tyler Crook is enthusiastic about his training experience.

    “I’ve definitely learned a lot since I’ve been here,” said the Harwinton, Conn., native. “Bolt extractions, for example, are a hundred times easier now with what I’ve learned.”

    Crook’s partner in training is LCpl. Charles Matte, from Jennings, La.

    “I’ve learned a lot of different techniques for extracting bolts, proper methods for bolting fixtures on and taking them off properly,” Matte said. “Being around people with a lot more experience at machining teaches you tricks of the trade.”

    Over at the Electro-Optics Shop Lance Cpl. Bryant Paez-Rodriguez is honing his skills as an electro-optics ordinance technician by adjusting and repairing the targeting system for the M777 Lightweight 155mm Howitzer.

    “I’ve learned quite a bit here,” said the Las Vegas native. “I can use all of this when I get back to my company.”

    Private First Class Christian Morales, from Houston, is a towed artillery technician working on other aspects of the M777.

    “I take it apart completely and put it back together with new and refurbished parts,” Morales said

    His final comments seem to reflect the opinions of the other Marines training at Production Plant Barstow.

    “There’s a lot I’ve learned here that I can bring back to my unit,” Morales said. “We have a lot of equipment. Everything you put on has to be right the first time because other peoples’ lives depend on it.”



    Date Taken: 01.31.2017
    Date Posted: 02.13.2017 12:47
    Story ID: 223396
    Hometown: ABERDEEN, WA, US
    Hometown: CROCKETT, VA, US
    Hometown: ENFIELD, CT, US
    Hometown: FORT WAYNE, IN, US
    Hometown: FRAMINGHAM, MA, US
    Hometown: HARWINTON, CT, US
    Hometown: HOUSTON, TX, US
    Hometown: JENNINGS, LA, US
    Hometown: LAS VEGAS, NV, US
    Hometown: LAURINBURG, NC, US
    Hometown: MILWAUKEE, WI, US
    Hometown: SEATTLE, WA, US

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