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II Marine Expeditionary Force

Readiness. Standards. Core Values.

Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C.
Recruits demonstrate abilities during final exercise

By Lance Cpl. Pedro Cardenas | | January 17, 2013

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Recruits of Company M, 3rd Recruit Training Battalion, weave through the logs of an obstacle inthe Confidence Course during the Crucible at Edson Range aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif., on Jan. 9. The Confidence Course is part of the 54-hour combat simulation recruits must work through in order to earn the title "Marine."

Recruits of Company M, 3rd Recruit Training Battalion, weave through the logs of an obstacle inthe Confidence Course during the Crucible at Edson Range aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif., on Jan. 9. The Confidence Course is part of the 54-hour combat simulation recruits must work through in order to earn the title "Marine." (Photo by Lance Cpl. Pedro Cardenas)


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San Diego --     Recruits of Company M, 3rd Recruit Training Battalion, pushed through the Crucible during recruit training at Edson Range aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif., Jan. 9.
    The Crucible is the final event of recruit training and is used to simulate combat scenarios. It is a 54-hour training event in which recruits experience sleep and food deprivation. Recruits are expected to apply training they have learned and perform physically and mentally under pressure.
    “The Crucible is the culminating event of train¬ing,” said Staff Sgt. Edward G. Rumbaoa, drill instructor, Platoon3269, Co. M, 3rd RTBn. “It’s where recruits can apply the skills they have learned from the past three months.”
    Before each event at the Crucible, recruits are read citations of remarkable, heroic actions Marines have been recognized for throughout history.
    One part of the Confidence Course is based on Medal of Honor recipient Cpl. Jason L. Dunham, who was awarded the medal posthumously for his actions in Iraq. He deliberately covered an enemy grenade, shielding the blast with his body, saving nearby Marines.
    The Confidence Course, an event during the Crucible, is designed to test recruits’ confidence by completing a series of obstacles as a team. Recruits were instructed to climb a platform-tower from one level to the next. Once on top of the tower, they would climb down a net, made out of thick rope, on the other side.
    “We had to make sure all recruits got up and over the obstacle, set up a perimeter and provide security,” said Recruit Sean H. Cain, Plt. 3269, Co. M, 3rd RTBn. “It was very challenging. There was some confusion at first, but it was just another obstacle we had to overcome.”
    Team work was an essential part of completing the task at hand. The obstacle forced recruits to work together and was impossible to complete without doing so.
    “We had to build a strong base of recruits. The stronger recruits helped the ones that could not physically get over the platforms,” said Cain.
Recruits have trained for their fi¬nal 54-hours together, en¬dured the same pains and challenges, since the day they first stood on the famous yellow footprints.
“The recruits will be rewarded at the end of the Crucible when they are given the title of United States Marine at the Eagle, Globe and Anchor ceremony,” said Rumbaoa.
The recruits of Co. M are charging through the Crucible with poise and grit. These traits will pay off once they accomplish their mission and complete 54-hours of intense training and become Marines.
“The Crucible is the final initiation to becoming a Marine and we all have to do it together,” said Cain. “The most rewarding point is going to be when I look around at my peers and know that we made it. We are all Marines.”


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