News: FOB sweet FOB: Engineers build skills for deployment
Story by Cpl. Kenneth Jasik
MARINE CORPS AIR GROUND COMBAT CENTER TWENTYNINE PALMS, Calif. – When it’s time for Marines on patrol in Afghanistan to call it a day, they need a place they can call “home.” In most cases, these places are forward operating bases built and maintained by combat engineers.
To help prepare for building and improving FOBs, combat outposts and patrol bases in Afghanistan, Marines with Alpha Company, Combat Logistics Battalion 1, Combat Logistics Regiment 1, 1st Marine Logistics Group, added improvements to an existing forward operating base here, July 28-Aug. 1.
To improve the FOB, Combat engineers utilized expandable barriers filled with dirt called HESCO. Engineers built structures out of wood and fortified positions using a combination of materials including concertina wire and sandbags.
The wood-work requires carpentry abilities and HESCO barriers need to be stood up, expanded and tied together before they can be filled with sand.
“This is exactly what we’ll be doing in country,” said Staff Sgt. Jason P. Flynn, combat engineer, Alpha Company, CLB-1. “We will be constantly doing improvements to [patrol bases, combat outposts] and FOBs as well as building new ones.”
The Marines and sailors are improving their skills, and they see improvement each time they conduct a mission.
“The training out here has been very good,” said Lance Cpl. Taylor D. King, combat engineer, Alpha Company, from McKinleyville, Calif. “It’s done nothing but made us stronger, and we get better with every mission.”
The Marines preparing for Afghanistan know that the training is helping them become more proficient for their job, which give Marines a place to call home in Afghanistan.
“I’m looking forward to [deploying with this unit]” said Flynn, 35, from Burnsville, N.C. “I’ve got great Marines, [a] great chain of command and I’m ready to get out there and get started.”