The following is a release from Lance Cpl. Fatmeh Saad of II Marine Expeditionary Force:
Landing support specialists with Combat Logistics Battalion 22, Headquarters Regiment, participated in an external cargo lift exercise with units from the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing at Landing Zone Albatross at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C., May 7, 2015.
“It’s important for our Marines to practice being part of a helicopter support team to learn how to safely and efficiently attach cargo loads to helicopters, so that we can support the troops on the ground and get them the supplies they need,” said 2nd Lt. Joshua Lober, a platoon commander with CLB-22.
During the exercise, the Marines secured simulated cargo loads to a CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter. Pilots on the aircraft then flew the external loads through a circuit before being directed onto the field by CLB-22 Marines for landing.
“We are out here to assist the air wing with training their pilots, as well as train our Marines to perform external cargo lifts,” said Sgt. Christopher Harvey, a landing support specialist with the unit and a native of Syracuse, New York.
The unit could be called upon during an operation to deliver ammunition or medical supplies to ground units, according to Harvey. They may also be tasked with retrieving broken equipment and downed aircrafts, and assisting Marine Expeditionary Units with transferring cargo between ships.
“We schedule 12-15 training exercises a month to ensure our Marines are prepared to perform these critical tasks at any time, whether or not we are preparing for deployment,” said Harvey.