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Spouses and family members climb into the back of 7 tons and go on a short tour of the training area during II Marine Headquarters Group’s: “In Their Boots Day” aboard Camp Lejeune, N.C., April 29, 2016. From eating Meals Ready to Eat to conducting a live fire range, family members and spouses experienced what the Marine Corps is all about. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Justin T. Updegraff/ Released)

Photo by Cpl. Justin Updegraff

In Their Boots Day: Family members and spouses experience the Marine Corps

3 May 2016 | Cpl. Justin T. Updegraff II MEF Headquarters Group

MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C.  – Family members and spouses spent the day with their Marines learning about some of what the Marine Corps does during “In Their Boots Day” at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, April 29, 2016.

The family members spent the day learning and shooting the different weapon systems utilized in the Marine Corps, ate a Meal Ready to Eat, were given the opportunity to shoot an M4 Assault Rifle and rode in 7-tons on a simulated convoy.

“We arrived at the Indoor Simulated Marksmanship Trainer and shot five different weapons”, said Dr. Adair Chesley. “I had my first MRE, which was chicken tortellini, and now we’re on a military range experiencing what you guys do.”

 The family members and spouses started out the day at the ISMT, getting some trigger time with the M9 Service Pistol, M240 Bravo Light-Machine Gun, M249 Squad Automatic Weapon and the M4 Service Rifle.

“The ISMT is absolutely incredible”, said retired Marine Staff Sgt., Mario Canepa.  “You go in there and shoot just about any small weapon system and get a good feel of the actual thing. The technology used is very accurate at simulating what it is like to shoot the actual weapon using live rounds.”

To cap off the full experience, family members and spouses were shown a firing method known as “talking guns.” Marines from II Marine Headquarters group operated two M240s and a .50 Caliber Machine Guns simulating constant suppression of the enemy by switching between the three weapons.

With their trigger fingers itching for some action, they were given a class on how to properly engage targets from the standing, kneeling and prone firing positions using an M4. With live rounds in hand, and flak and kevlar protecting their bodies, they ran through a course of fire shooting at automated targets.

”This is a great idea to bring the spouses out, let them see a little bit of what the Marine Corps is about”, said Canepa. “It is an honor and a privilege to come out here and have these Marines takes the time to take us through the course of fire and show us what they do.”


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