CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. --
Marines with Headquarters and Support Battalion hosted a “J. Wayne Day” aboard Camp Pendleton April 28, 2017, providing families and loved ones the chance to experience “a day in the life of a Marine.”
Family members were first divided into three platoons. For the first platoon, day began with a safety brief followed by an opportunity to shoot at the range; followed by a Crash Fire Rescue and Aircraft display, Marine Corps Martial Arts Program and K-9 demonstrations, and ended with the Special Recreation Team static display.
“This event builds morale between Marines in the units and their loved ones,” said Sgt. Anthony Nelson, family readiness officer, Headquarters and Support Battalion Camp Pendleton. “By letting the families see the different events, it gives them insight on what can happen on a day-to-day basis in a Marine’s life.”
Families and loved ones were anxious as they prepared for the live fire exercise. During the exercise they fired an M4 at a range of 5 meters.
“I loved the firing of the weapons, as daunting as it is, it is an extraordinary experience,” said Alexandra Dwek, Marine family member. “It made me step out of my comfort zone, but it became a memorable experience.”
During the second event families got the chance to see how fast the Crash Fire Rescue crew suited up and demonstrated how to properly extinguish a fire.
“Holding the hose at the Fire Crash event was a lot harder than I thought it would be,” said Breana Perez, retired Marine spouse. “It really opens your eyes as to what these Marines train for and do in their careers.”
Camp Pendleton’s Provost Marshalls Office Special Reaction Team, a K-9 unit, conducted the five phases of aggression demonstration and showed the K-9’s controlled action techniques.
“I liked the K-9 event, watching them perform the aggression techniques was exciting,” said Sherri Polidoro, Col. John R. Polidoro’s spouse. “It was amazing to see how the dogs were so controlled, even though he was tempted to go off on his own.”
After learning MCMAP techniques, families expressed gratitude about the events during “J” Wayne Day and the morale boost the day provided.
“I feel this event brings us closer as a family and it let the families know what they can go through every day,” said Chou. “I appreciate all the time and effort that went into organizing this event.”