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A CH-53E Super Stallion lands in Yuma, Ariz. with Marines and Sailors for a live-fire field trip Feb. 27. Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 465 worked alongside Marine Fighter Attack Training Squadron 101 by assisting them with the transportation of the participants.

Photo by Lance Cpl. Michael Thorn

Sharpshooters have a blast on ‘live-fire day’

27 Feb 2014 | Lance Cpl. Michael Thorn

Marines and Sailors with Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFAT) 101 participated in a live-fire field trip in Yuma, Ariz., Feb. 27.

The live-fire exercise consisted of four F/A-18D Hornets training with live ordnance including two Mark-82 bombs, four Zuni rockets and approximately 500 20mm rounds for Marines and Sailors to see.

The 48 Marines and Sailors that participated flew from Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, Calif., in CH-53E Super Stallions from Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron (HMH) 465. The Super Stallions landed the participants at a civilian-ran shooting range in Yuma, Ariz., where the Hornet demonstration took place.

“This live day is a motivating opportunity for the hard working Marines and Sailors that don’t really get to see where their work goes,” said Maj. Bryan W. Youngers, officer in charge during the field trip. “Going out here gives them that chance to know what it’s all like and see their work in action.”

Field trips such as this one provide knowledge and increase morale, but unfortunately don’t happen often.

“This happens for the Marines and Sailors maybe once a year,” said Courtney Curtis, range inspector for the field trip. “The rest of the time out here is used for other training revolutions. It’s valuable to have them see where their work goes. When a bomb drops, it’s thanks to them.”

“It was definitely a great experience for us,” said Cpl. Andres Luna, a participating Marine. “We got to see something new that not many people get to see, and we can bring stories about it back to our shops.”

All the hard work behind the scenes was put to the test and successfully showed the importance of the work these Marines and Sailors perform.

3rd Marine Aircraft Wing