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Lava Dogs fast rope at Bellows: Recent training will prepare battalion for spring deployment

Marine Corps News


Story by Pfc. Monroe F. Seigle

MARINE CORPS BASE HAWAII, KANEOHE BAY, Hawaii(Nov. 19, 2002) -- Marines from Bravo Co., 1st Bn., 3rd Marine Regiment, went to Marine Corps Training Area Bellows, Nov. 19 to conduct fast roping exercises. They descended from CH-53D Sea Stallion helicopters in a simulated combat environment.

Fast roping is utilized when a helicopter has to insert troops, but does not have enough space to land. It can also be utilized in ship takedowns, when Marines attack an enemy ship and try to seize control of it.

"This was some awesome hands-on training," said Cpl. Lucas Dyer, a squad leader for Bravo Co., 1/3. "We have gotten a lot of new Marines in the last couple months. This is the first hands-on training for a lot of them."

Before engaging in the fast rope exercises, the Marines were given several blocks of instruction on the proper procedures for descending down the rope.

The Marines are taught that there are three points of contact during their descent down the rope. They must make sure the rope is secure with their hands, feet and knees until the moment they hit the ground.

After hitting the ground, they are instructed to immediately move to a secure area. Depending on the situation, they must sometimes set up a defensive perimeter and get accountability of all Marines present.

"This was a confidence builder for a lot of the Marines who haven't done this before," said Capt. John P. Bobo, commanding officer for Bravo Co, 1/3. "I am sure they will have even more confidence the next time they perform this exercise."

The Marines from Bravo Co. are preparing for a deployment to Okinawa in the spring.

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