Security Force ups their arsenal
By Lance Cpl. R. Drew Hendricks
| | January 25, 2006
U.S. MARINE CORPS FORCES, PACIFIC, CAMP H. M. SMITH, Hawaii --
Marines from the Marine Corps Forces, Pacific Security Augmentation Force sent thousands of rounds down range as they honed their combat pistol skills and qualified with the M-1014 Combat Shotgun at Puuloa range, Jan. 17-18.
”This training is to prepare you for combat, that’s what its all about gentleman,” said Sgt. Matthew E. Nale, the noncommissioned officer in charge of training the SAF. “Combat is what Marines are made for.”
The Marines spent the first day in class learning the functions of the M-1014, which is a lightweight, gas operated, tubular magazine fed, 12 gauge, semi-automatic shotgun.
To qualify, the Marines not only shot the weapon, they also had to disassemble, reassemble and conduct basic maintenance on the weapon.
The Marines were able to shoot off a few rounds on the first day, but the second day is when the metal met the target.
The Marines paired off in teams of two and simulated a room-clearing scenario. After breaching a plank wood door, the Marines rushed to the nearest barrier for cover. The Marine who breached the door, continued to lay down covering fire with his shotgun, while the other engaged targets with his pistol.
After several successful runs, the Marines were allowed to come up with their own strategy for clearing the course.
“There are multiple ways to complete this course, but like Sgt. Nale taught us, speed and accuracy are what counts,” said Staff Sgt. William K. Screws, a member of the SAF.
After the shotguns shells were gone, the Marines found themselves with close to a 1,000 9mm rounds still to be fired. They continued to enhance the obstacles, increasing difficulty to clear them fast, accurately and safely.
“We have a great opportunity to come out here and conduct some pretty high speed training. I’m glad to see these Marines taking advantage of it,” said Nale.
According to Nale, regardless of any Marines job, they should take every opportunity to prepare themselves for combat.
“After this training, I know that I am a better shot, and I know I would be comfortable using these weapons in combat,” said Cpl. Jonathan E. Knight, a SAF member. “Not to mention I have fun doing it.”
As fun as the training may be, it serves a very important purpose.
“This training comes with a price Marines,” added Nale. “Just know that if this base comes under attack, a natural disaster strikes, or anything else happens that requires the SAF, you are going to get a call.”
The SAF Marines train quarterly, in an effort to constantly improve their ability to respond in an emergency situation.
“I’ve said it a hundred times, every Marine should continue to train like they were going to combat tomorrow,” said Nale. “That’s what I am hoping to continue to do with these Marines here.”