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MSSG-31 prepares for 24th cycle with 31st MEU

Marine Corps News

Story Identification #: 200552405510
Story by Lance Cpl. Will Lathrop

CAMP KINSER, OKINAWA, Japan (May 24, 2005) -- Marines with MEU Service Support Group 31 are gearing up for another training cycle with the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit.

The MSSG provides logistical and material support for the MEU to maintain unit readiness and maximum combat effectiveness of the MEU and its other two subordinate elements, the ground and air combat elements.

According to 1st Lt. William J. Horton, assistant operations officer for MSSG-31, their Marines and sailors have spent the last two weeks transitioning in preparation for the next cycle.

“About 85 percent of our personnel are either changing duty stations or returning to their parent commands,” Horton said.

The majority of the officers and staff non-commissioned officers performed their turnover last week, with the other departing Marines and sailors checking out this week.

The remaining Marines and corpsmen will be mentoring the new, incoming Marines on how the MSSG operates within the MEU, both in combat and training environments, explained Horton. The new Marines will benefit from the experiences of the senior Marines’ recent tour in Iraq.

Maj. Ricky F. Brown, the executive officer of MSSG-31 during the last cycle, believes this as well, based on the performance of the Marines he worked with on Camp Fallujah, Iraq.

“Our men and women worked above and beyond what was expected of them on a daily basis,” Brown said proudly.

The individual taking over as the MSSG executive officer is Maj. Charles M. Andrews, who is also excited about the upcoming training cycle.

"All of the Marines and sailors of MSSG-31 realize the importance of being a readily deployable force in deterring terror and aggression in the Pacific,” said Andrews. “We are looking forward to getting some good training and fostering positive relationships during this cycle as we work together with our security partners in the region."

The Marines and sailors with MSSG – 31 completed combat operations on Feb. 5, shortly after the Iraqi elections, Jan. 30. They then transitioned to Camp Virginia, Kuwait, embarked aboard the USS Harper’s Ferry (LSD-49) of the Essex Amphibious Readiness Group, and arrived back in Okinawa April 2, mission accomplished.


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