MARINE CORPS AIR GROUND COMBAT CENTER, TWENTYNINE PALMS, Calif. --
Marines and sailors with 3rd Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion gathered in formation for a ceremony to officially activate Company E and its guideon March 19 at the battalion’s Light Armored Vehicle ramp.
Company E, known as Erie Company, is the newest addition to the Wolfpack. Since August, the company has grown to over 120 Marines and sailors, said 1st Lt. Brett Nungesser, the new company’s commander.
“This is a big day for all the Marines,” said Nungesser, a San Marino, Calif. native. “This is our official activation, or final stamp of approval.”
In fiscal year 2004, the Force Structure Review Group presented to the commandant that each active component of LAR battalions should add a fifth LAR company, said Lt. Col. Ken Kassner, the commander of 3rd LAR. Company E is the first company to do so from all LAR battalions Marine Corps wide.
“Today we formally established Company E as a war fighting LAR company and welcome them to the Wolfpack,” said Kassner, a Coupland, Texas native. “The company will soon be fully operational, capable and ready for world wide deployment.”
3rd LAR was officially established in May 1983, when the Marine Corps realized that there was a need to enhance mobility and firepower of the units tasked with frequent deployments. The LAV family of vehicles filled this void by being highly mobile and able to move on water and land.
The Wolfpack has fought in support of multiple wars since, to include Operation Desert Shield, Operation Restore Hope and Operation Iraqi Freedom. The battalion will be returning for their fifth deployment to Iraq this spring.
Company E will be part of the battalion’s Remain-Behind Element and will continue to train to maintain their combat readiness for any future deployments.
“The strength of the pack is the wolf, the strength of the wolf is the pack,” Kassner said nearing the end of the ceremony.