While in the midst of a pandemic with COVID mitigations, training evolutions can be hindered slightly. Nonetheless, Center for Naval Aviation Technical Training Unit Lemoore demonstrated the motto “Semper Gumby,” by meeting challenges with adaption to ensure the fleet is trained and mission ready.
With a need of preparation for a rapid deployment scheduled for the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, CNATTU Lemoore hosted Marines from Marine Corps Air Station New River in early March. Specifically, 35 Marines from Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 366 and Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 29 trained with Naval firefighting instructors on the Mobile Aircraft Firefighting Training Device during shipboard firefighting training at the unit’s fire school.
The shipboard firefighting training is required for every Sailor and Marine before they deploy onboard a ship. An essential skill that could save lives and equipment if an unfortunate event were to happen.
Major Jared Howells of HMH-366, officer in charge of the 31st MEU detachment, shared some remarks of gratitude regarding the training support from CNATTU Lemoore.
“On behalf of HMH-366 and MAG-29, I want to say thank you for the opportunity and hospitality, Howells said. “CNATTU Lemoore has an outstanding team of professionals that provided an excellent learning environment. Lt. Mount, Chief Black and the CNATTU team did a fantastic job covering all details from logistics, training, safety and morale. It all resulted in a seamless and well-organized process.”
The training of Marines was well received, and brought a higher level of awareness to strengthen their abilities to respond to emergency situations. The vigorous firefighting training will also contribute and improve the damage control readiness during deployment operations.
During the live burn drills, Marines were split into four firefighting hose teams with nine instructors motivating and ensuring safety.
“Our team is here to support operational forces period, and we work hard to never forget that,” Cmdr. Shawn Rumbley, CNATTU Lemoore’s commanding officer, said. “We wish the Marines of HMH-366 and MALS-29 a very successful deployment.”
While the training was only the beginning of their required pre-deployment training, the Marines will continue to reinforce their skills throughout their deployment.