Twentynine Palms -- Marine Wing Support Squadron 374 invited Marine spouses and family members to participate in a Jane Wayne Day aboard the Combat Center April 29, 2016.
“We held this day to show spouses and family members the capabilities of the squadron as well as what the Marines they love do on a daily basis,” said 2nd Lt. Benjamin Baltz, combat engineer platoon commander, MWSS-374. “I know a lot of Marines who go home and they don’t want to bring work with them, so it’s hard for spouses and family members to get a good picture of what their loved ones do.”
Approximately 15 spouses attended the event which began at Del Valle Field. Participants learned close order drill and conducted condensed physical training activities which were similar to what Marines do for daily exercise.
“This is a good opportunity to teach families a variety of things,” Baltz said. “We showed them a lot of [daily] operations we conduct as well as the small things every Marine should know how to do.”
Following drill and PT, participants headed to bldg. 1707 where they learned about equipment utilized by the squadrons’ Explosive Ordnance Disposal team and communication Marines. They then moved onto an Indoor Simulated Marksmanship Trainer and taught the weapons systems Marines use on the battlefield, to include the M240B medium machinegun, M249 Squad Automatic Weapon, 9mm pistol and the M16 service rifle.
“It was nice to see all of the other wives and experience a piece of what my husband goes through day-to-day,” said Jessica Kick, wife of Lance Cpl. Andrew Kick, motor transportation operator, MWSS- 374.
Spouses and family members dined at Dunham Mess Hall with the squadrons’ commanding officer, Lt. Col. Steven Murphy. After lunch, they were transported in a Medium Tactical Vehicle Replacement to the Strategic Expeditionary Landing Field and shown the equipment and vehicles crash fire rescue Marines use. Combat engineers also demonstrated the heavy equipment they operate at the SELF and in a deployed environment.
“It’s awesome to not just experience my husband’s job but also all of the jobs of other Marines who take part in the mission of the unit,” Kick said. “It was a lot of fun and I think every spouse should do it at least once.”
At the conclusion of the day, Murphy thanked the spouses for coming out and also for being part of the vital role that is supporting their Marine.
“My Marines and sailors make it easy for me to do my job,” Murphy said. “I want to say thank you to the families and the spouses for everything you do at home. Without you and your support, the Marines and sailors would not be able to do what they do on a daily basis.”