MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. -- The Marines Corps has always been known to be the first to fight and the last to leave. Marines boast about doing more with less and never backing down. With the ability to fight in any clime and place, the Marines must first train to that standard.
Marines with 3rd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment completed the Marine Corps Combat Readiness Evaluation at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, May 6-10, 2016.
The MCCRE, the last big exercise with the battalion as a whole, tests the Marines on their operational readiness and the ability to function as a battalion in a deployed environment.
“Units only conduct the MCCRE during a work-up,” said Captain Chris Parks, company commander for Lima Company. “This is the last thing we do before we chop and composite for a deployment.”
The battalion is slated for the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit in early 2017, where they will provide maritime security across countries throughout numerous areas of operation.
“It will allow the Marines to experience some of the hardships that come along with a deployment,” said Sgt. Brandon Andrade, a squad leader with the battalion. “They will be able to use the MCCRE as a tool to utilize downrange.”
Throughout the week, the battalion was put through rigorous events to include setting up offensive and defensive positions, patrolling known enemy areas, conducting reconnaissance, and ultimately conducting raids on their position.
“It all boils down to mental toughness,” Parks said. “With everything we encounter such as weather or enemy situation, we’re not allowed to quit and we’re not allowed lose; everything we do now will ensure that.”
The Marines are constantly fine tuning their skills as basic infantryman and will take every opportunity that they come across.
“Even though it’s an evaluation, we always capitalize on any chance we get to train,” Parks said.