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Snow falls over the command operations center during an entire day of a 2nd Marine Logistics Group command post exercise aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C., Feb. 24, 2015. The Marines involved in the CPX battled multiple weather conditions such as snow, sleet and rain during the exercise designed to ensure logistical readiness and identify areas in need of improvement. (U.S. Marine Corps Photo by Cpl. Chelsea D. Toombs/Released)

Photo by Cpl. Chelsea Toombs

2nd Marine Logistics Group endures the cold during CPX

27 Feb 2015 | Cpl. Chelsea Toombs II Marine Expeditionary Force

A variety of weather conditions greeted Marines with Headquarters Regiment, 2nd Marine Logistics Group, during the command post exercise Feb. 20-27, 2015. Marines from Headquarters Regiment stood alongside various units within 2nd MLG during stints of snow, sleet and rain during the weeklong CPX.

The exercise was designed to ensure the unit’s logistical readiness and identify the areas in need of improvement. The purpose is to set up command and control for a forward deployed MLG.

“This is our first Marine Logistics Group Forward,” said Capt. Andrew Guthrie, the senior watch officer for Headquarters Regiment and a Lordstown, Ohio, native. “We’ll be doing more command post exercises in the future and culminating with a large scale exercise later this summer at [Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms].”

A large part of the mission for the CPX was to put their plans into action.

“We developed a lot of things on paper for what the MLG forward should look like,” Guthrie said. “Now we’re actually putting that into practice and refining those [standard operating procedures] and making them better because you can do things on paper all you want, but when you actually get to the field and exercise it, then you find out what changes need to be made to the SOPs.”

The Marines faced freezing temperatures and other adversities, but still managed a successful CPX in the eyes of the operations officer.

Major Jordan Meads, the operations officer for Headquarters Regiment, 2nd MLG, and a Tyler, Texas, native, said the CPX-1 was exceptional. The Marines were faced with snow, rain, and the freezing and thawing out of the command operations center, yet the Marines still had hot chow, good services and high morale.

Facing hardships is a great way to learn everything you can while in the field, said Meads.

“There’s nothing better than taking a unit to the field and implementing what you’ve learned,” Meads said. “You can sit in a classroom or a conference room all day and you can plan it. You can write the operations order, you can put a confirmation brief together, but until the first truck gets stuck in the mud, or until the port-a-john truck doesn’t show up on time, you don’t know what you’re doing.”

This CPX provided the unit information on areas of improvement and was the foundation for their upcoming CPXs.

“The past four days of set up and training have given us a great basis, a great groundwork from which to continue this program and develop what it is that MLG is going to call its main [command operations center] and forward [command operations center,]” said Meads.

This CPX was the first of a three-part continuum for the unit.
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