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Jet Stream



Friday, January 17, 2014 Vol. 49, No. 2 Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, S.C.

Free tax preparation Page 15

“The noise you hear is the sound of freedom.”

n Entertainment n News Briefs n Weather n In The Community n Around The Corps

2 3 3 4 10

How will you pay for college? Page 4

The Medal of Honor Bowl Page 5

VMFA-312 change of command Page 13

Home at

last See Page 12

Honoring The


Fighting Bengals roar into Western Pacific Lance Cpl. Brendan Roethel Staff Writer

Marine All-Weather Fighter Attack Squadron 224 deployed from Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort to the Western Pacific in support of the Unit Deployment Program, Jan. 9. The squadron will train and support other Marine units during Lava Viper training at Hiccum Air Force Base in Hawaii, and conduct multinational exercises with Marine Aircraft Group 12 in Japan and throughout the Western Pacific for six months. The mission of the deployment is to improve relations with America’s allies and expose Marines to broader training environments. “This deployment will offer a variety of experiences for all the Marines in the squadron,” said Sgt. Harold Blye, an imagery analyst for VMFA(AW)-224. “During the deployment the Marines

will get to work alongside Marines in different units as well as service members from other countries. This will allow the Marines to get more familiar with each other and those outside of their squadron to make them work more cohesively to accomplish a common goal. Lava Viper training will be especially beneficial in getting our Marines ready for what’s to come in the following months.” Lava Viper is a combinedarms exercise designed to enhance the capabilities of ground combat and support element Marines participating. “I am pretty excited about this deployment,” said Sgt. Maj. Stacey Holcomb, the squadron sergeant major for VMFA(AW)-224. “We will get to interact with our counterparts in the Western Pacific and refine our skills. see

Bengals, page 12

Photo by Cpl. Timothy Norris

Staff Sgt. Alfred Kennard, a career retention specialist with 6th Marine Corps District, reads a poem during the Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemorative service aboard Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, Jan. 15. The service included musical selections, dramatic readings of King’s “If faith,” speech and remarks from Sgt. Maj. KeCia Jordan, the Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort sergeant major, and Capt. Anne Lear, Naval Hospital Beaufort commanding officer. The speakers and performers celebrated King’s legacy by reviewing his accomplishments as a leader in non-violent protest of social inequality and paying tribute to the cultural changes he influenced.

Marines with Marine All-Weather Fighter Attack Squadron 224 depart Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort for the Western Pacific in support of the Unit Deployment Program, Jan. 9.


The Jet Stream

Games and Entertainment

Friday, January 17, 2014

MCAS Beaufort Movie Schedule

Saturday 2 p.m. PG (1:48)

Mess Hall Menu Monday - Friday Breakfast: 6 - 7:30 a.m. Lunch: 11 a.m. - 12:45 p.m. Dinner: 4 - 6 p.m.

Saturday 4:30 p.m. PG (1:33)

Saturday 7 p.m. R (1:50)

MCRD Parris Island Movie Schedule

Saturday, Sunday and holidays Brunch: 8:30 - 11 a.m. Dinner: 4 - 6 p.m.

Midrats Sunday - Thursday 11:30 p.m. - 1 a.m. Takeout Window Hours: Breakfast - Mon. - Fri. 7:30 a.m. - 11 a.m. Lunch - Mon. - Fri. 12:45 p.m. - 4 p.m. Dinner - Mon. - Fri. 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.

Saturday Lunch Baked ziti with four cheeses

Dinner Apple glazed corned beef

Sunday 2 p.m. PG (1:48)

Sunday Lunch Dinner Herbed baked chicken Pork chops smothand rice ered with onions

Sunday 4:30 p.m. PG-13 (2:05)

Sunday 7 p.m. PG-13 (1:59)


Monday - Friday Breakfast Hot farina, hot hominy grits and oven-fried bacon Monday Dinner Lunch Tex-mex chicken and Southwestern corn rice chowder Tuesday Dinner Lunch Bean with bacon Fried catfish and soup southern style greens Wednesday Dinner Lunch Creole shrimp and Chicken piccata and corn carrots Thursday Dinner Lunch Salisbury steak and Indian spiced roast brown gravy chicken breast Friday Dinner Lunch Louisiana seafood Chicken and cheese gumbo enchiladas

CHapel serviCes Roman Catholic • 9:30 a.m. - Sunday Mass • Confession takes place before Mass • Confession Monday - Thursday at noon Protestant • 9:45 a.m. - Protestant Church School (Sunday School) • 11 a.m. - Protestant Sunday Worship Service (Children’s church is also available at this time) • 5 p.m. - Wednesday Protestant Bible Study • 5 p.m. - Saturday Worship Service at Laurel Bay Youth Center Buddhist • 11 a.m. - Saturday Worship Service in the Chapel Fellowship Hall Labyrinth Walk • 8 a.m - 4 p.m. - Monday in the Chapel Fellowship Hall



5. Shoulder boards naval officers wear 7. Flak jackets and ___ were first used by Marines in the Korean War 8. First sergeant major IN the Marine Corps 9. A MEU, MEB, and MEF are a ___ 10. This bell hangs in Quantico, Va. 11. Name for the first female Marines

1. Wearing civilian clothes is a ___ 2. Distinguishes officers from foe 3. Marine who commanded the most troops 4. Oldest rank in the Marine Corps 6. Bloodiest Marine battle

Answer key will be available on, Jan. 22.


Other Faith Groups • For Jewish, Mormon and Islamic support, contact the Chaplain’s Office at 228-7775

Mission Assurance


MCAS Beaufort Station Inspector Sexual Assault Response Coordinator Force Protection information and concerns PMO Dispatch Severe Weather and Force Protection

228-7789 228-6904 228-6924 228-6710 1-800-343-0639

Sexual Assault The contact number for a Uniformed Victim Advocate is 592-0646. This number can get you in contact with a UVA 24 hours a day.

Fraud, Waste and Abuse

If you know of or suspect any fraud, waste or abuse aboard MCAS Beaufort, call 228-7777. If you know of or suspect any fraud, waste or abuse within MAG-31, call (252) 466-5038. The automated answering service on these lines is available 24 hours a day.

Answer key will be available on, Jan. 22.

Command Information

The Jet Stream

Tri-Command Weather 7 Day Forecast

Friday, January 17, 2014


High Shooter Capt. R.L.Sidlovsky VMFA-251



Forecast according to

Marine Corps Community Services is slated to hold an Oyster Roast Jan. 24, at Traditions aboard MCRD Parris Island from 5 - 8 p.m. The cost is $15 per person. For more information call 228-1566.

A “Kids on the Homefront” event is scheduled to take place Jan. 18, at the Laurel Bay Youth Center from 9 a.m.- 12 p.m. Children will have the opportunity to connect while making crafts and having fun. Registration is required. For more information call 228-7311.

An “Accessing Higher Education” workshop is scheduled to take place Jan. 23, from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m at the Air Station Library. For more information call 228-7311.

An electronics waste and shredding event is scheduled to take place Jan. 18, from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. at 140 Shanklin Rd. in Beaufort. Residents can bring old electronic items for recycling. For more information call 255-2734.

A “Night of Stars School Dance” is slated to take place Feb. 14, from 6 - 10 p.m. at the Laurel Bay Youth Center. The dance begins at 6 p.m. for grades 3-5 and 8 p.m. for grades 6 and up. For more information call 228-7640.

The photocopying of U.S. Government identification cards is a violation of Title 18, U.S. Code Part I, Chapter 33, Section 701 and punishable by fine and imprisonment.

Be aware of possible near or below freezing temperatures throughout the winter months. Exposure to cold can cause frostbite or hypothermia and become lifethreatening. Infants and elderly people are most susceptible. What constitutes extreme cold varies in different parts of the country. In the South, near freezing temperatures are considered extreme cold.

Jet Stream The

Contact us: 228-7225 Commanding Officer MCAS Beaufort Col. Brian Murtha

Public Affairs Officer

Brain Teaser

Capt. Jordan Cochran

What is better than the best, more evil than demons, the poor have it and the rich need it, and if you eat it, you will die?

Public Affairs Chief

Gunnery Sgt. Stephen Traynham

Press Chief

Sgt. Terika S. King

Comm/Media Relations Chief Sgt. Marcy Sanchez

Editor Answer for this week’s brain teaser will be available on, Jan. 22.

Seven C’s of a healthy relationship Lt. Brett Cartwright

MAG-31 Deputy Command Chaplain

As the New Year is full on, I wish to encourage you to consider some wise advice from a colleague of mine. Chaplain Girardin and his family were a great inspiration to my wife and I in the early stages of our marriage. He use to speak of the “Seven C’s of a Healthy Relationship” and I want to share them with you with my own spin attached to them. At the “C”ore of any successful family is a strong relationship with God. We teach recruits that people at the core must have a strong body, mind, and spirit. For most this derives completely from a relationship with God. God as a family’s foundation will stabilize and help a family weather any storm of life. Second is the need for healthy “C ”ommunication. James, of the Bible, states that “Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry.” Active listening is vital for any relationship to thrive and grow in understanding and mutual love and respect. Third is wise “C”onflict Resolution. Conflict is inevitable in any relationship and should be expected. However, the quality of that relationship will be determined principally by how conflict is managed. Of note: For more help in these last two areas a couple

should consider attending one of the PREP marriage enrichment workshops designed specifically for training couples in how to manage conflict safely. A “C”aring Spirit requires the value of humility. Caring for one another through gentleness, respect, and mercy to one another just makes life more enjoyable. People do this better when they find that God really does care for them. We teach recruits all the time “Marines don’t cover for one another they take care of each other.” Right up with there with the first foun-

to be simply a “C”ouple.” It requires patience or “long-suffering” with one another through this life. The things discussed above will require it. Often I come across folks who are married but tend to be living as married singles. Married single is when you live and act as with little accountability or mutual submission to each other. Many couples simply get tired of the battles and give up. While not divorcing they live as if the relationship is dead. Fighting this tendency in any long term relationship is vital to a couple’s survival. Working as a couple is God’s design for a life of joy and blessing. As the good book states, “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up.” Ecclesiastes 4:9-10. Finally, “C”haracter acceptance is the grease that allows all of these to work. A great definition of the type of love that comes from God is mentioned often by one of my favorite authors Max Lucado, “God loves you just as you are and not as you should be.” Acceptance of each others good, bad, or ugly is the character of grace in practice. Only God can ultimately change a willing heart. Couples who can let Him do that with their partner and simply learn to accept each other’s stuff will know peace between them.

“Working as a couple is God’s design for a life of joy and blessing.“ Lt. Brian C. Salter dational principal is “C”ommitment. Commitment is the willingness to remove “from the table” any hint or thought that one or the other has the right to quit or end the relationship. No relationship is ever beyond repair. Help is always around the corner and even if a time of separation is necessary for safety, commitment will help any relationship prevail through tough challenges. The challenge for most couples is

Cpl. John Wilkes

Comm/Media Relations Cpl. R.J. Driver

Staff Writers

Cpl. Sarah Cherry Cpl. Timothy Norris Cpl. Brady Wood Lance Cpl. Brendan Roethel

Editor’s note: We at The Jet Stream care about our reader’s opinion. In reaching our goal to put out the best possible product, we understand the importance of your feedback. Please add a comment to the “How can we improve The Jet Stream?” topic on our www. discussion board on how we can better your base newspaper. Published by the Savannah Morning News, a private firm in no way connected with the Department of Defense, the United States Marine Corps, the United States Navy, or Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, S.C., under exclusive written contract with the United States Marine Corps. This commercial-enterprise newspaper is an authorized publication for members of the military services. Its contents do not necessarily reflect the official views of the U.S. government, the Department of Defense, the U.S. Marine Corps or the U.S. Navy and do not imply endorsement thereof. The appearance of advertising in this publication, including inserts and supplements, does not constitute endorsement by the DoD, the Marine Corps, the Navy, Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, S.C., or the Savannah Morning News of the products or services advertised. Everything in this newspaper shall be made available for purchase, use, or patronage without regard to race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age, marital status, physical handicap, political affiliation or any other nonmerit factor of the purchaser, user or patron. If a violation of this equal opportunity policy by an advertiser is confirmed, the contractor shall refuse to print advertising from that source until the violation is corrected. Editorial content (i.e., all content other than paid advertisements) is edited, prepared and provided by the public affairs office of the installation. All queries concerning news and editorial content should be directed to: Jet Stream, Marine Corps Public Affairs Office, P.O. Box 55001, MCAS Beaufort, S.C., 29904 or (843) 228-7225. All queries concerning business matters or display ads should be directed to the Savannah Morning News at (843) 815-0800.


The Jet Stream

In Other News

Friday, January 17, 2014

Smart ways to pay for college Lance Cpl. Brendan Roethel Staff Writer

The education offices aboard Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort and Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island now offer a Pay for College class to teach Marines and their dependents how to pay for college without the aid of Tuition Assistance. “Many Marines were surprised when the Marine Corps began suspending TA programs,” said Karla Cortes, an education services specialist with the education office aboard MCAS Beaufort. “There were stories of Marines that wanted to further their education and others that were just a few credits short of attaining their degrees that decided to give up in fear of accruing large amounts of debt without assistance from the program. “In response to this trend we wanted to bust the myths that many Marines had concerning TA and prove to them that there are other ways they can attend school without draining their bank accounts.” The course is given by the education offices aboard the Air Station and Parris Island monthly and teaches Marines smarter ways to pay for college, so they can get the most for their money. At the course, Marines start from the very beginning of the college re-

search and application process. They learn about college accreditations and how to find accredited schools that will provide them with the best fit for their budget and personal needs. “Many Marines, before coming to the education office, just go by word of mouth when it comes to selecting a school,” Cortes said. “It is important for them to find a well accredited school that provides them with a quality education. This will better direct them toward a degree that resembles something more than a piece of paper worth thousands of dollars.” After the Marines learn which colleges are geared more toward their needs, Cortes shows the students that TA is not their only financial aid resource. The Marines learn how to apply for federal financial aid, grants, scholarships, and if necessary loans. “When I sit down with Marines and dependents their jaws drop when I show them how much money they could receive from grants, financial aid and scholarships,” Cortes said. “Many even learn that they could receive more money through these avenues then they would have with TA. Paying for college is like buying a car, the more work and research you do the greater your chances are at finding a better deal.”

Chief Warrant Officer 4 Grady Phillips and Chief Warrant Officer 4 Todd Roberts help move boxes of goods donated to CAPA’s closet. CAPA’s Closet supports the Child Abuse Prevention Association, which provides community education outreach programs focused on preventing and intervening in child abuse, as well as running a shelter.

Stingers set aim to community service Cpl. Sarah Cherry Staff Writer

More than 40 Marines with Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 31 gave their time and assistance to four non-profit groups in Beaufort, Dec. 27, 2013. Marines volunteered at Red Door Thrift Store, HELP of Beaufort, CAPA’s Closet and the Beaufort County Animal Shelter. At Red Door thrift store, Marines moved donated goods and cleaned the floors. Red Door thrift store supports Friends of Caroline Hospice, an organization dedicated to providing home care and volunteer services to people with life-threatening illness. At HELP of Beaufort, which provides financial and family assistance, Marines helped sort and reorganize donated goods.

They also volunteered at CAPA’s Closet, which runs a shelter and supports the Child Abuse Prevention Association. CAPA provides community education outreach programs focused on preventing and intervening in child abuse. Beaufort County Animal Shelter also had Marines volunteering, providing animals with basic care. Non-profit community-based organizations provide many services to Beaufort, from feeding and clothing the needy to housing stray or orphaned animals. These organizations have many tasks. Sorting clothes, loading and unloading furniture, organizing food by expiration date and caring for animals, among other tasks, are time and labor intensive.

For some Marines, the opportunity opened their eyes to the challenges Beaufort faces. “The benefit that I got was learning about the challenges that the Beaufort Humane Society has,” said Chief Warrant Officer 2 Joy Craig, who volunteered at the Beaufort County Animal Shelter. “They have a lot of work, and not a lot of resources to get it done. Volunteering made me want to help more.” Craig plans to continue helping at the animal shelter in the future. Beyond educating Marines on the Beaufort community, volunteering helps Marines become more thoroughly involved and entrenched in Beaufort. “Community service is so important because it puts you into the community,” said Steve Curless, president of HELP of Beaufort. “You live here, you work here, and you’re a part of this

community. [Volunteering] makes you more a part of the community, and I think that’s important no matter where you live, no matter where you get transferred - to be a part of the community and get to know the people in town.” For MALS-31 Marines, the trend of volunteering will continue to grow as the squadron plans to have volunteering events in the future and take on adopting part of downtown Beaufort. “The MALS Marines have set themselves apart in many venues. They’ve proved that they are the total package,” said Lt. Col. Willie Stansell, commanding officer of MALS31. “This is just one more venue that we can broaden our horizons by giving back to the community.”

The Jet Stream

In The Community

Friday, January 17, 2014


MOH recipients honored at All-Star game Lance Cpl. Brendan Roethel Staff Writer

Michael Pallardy, a kicker for University of Tennessee Volunteers, kicks a field goal during the Medal of Honor Bowl at the Johnson Hagood Memorial Stadium in Charleston, S.C., Jan. 11. The Medal of Honor Bowl features the nation’s top drafteligible college football players as projected for the NFL draft.

A tornado couldn’t stop a vortex of spectators from attending the Medal of Honor Bowl, at the Johnson Hagood Memorial Stadium, in Charleston, S.C., Jan. 11. The bowl was host to the American team, coached by Coach Ralph Friedgen, former University of Maryland Head Coach, and the National team, coached by Chan Gailey, former head coach for the National Football League’s Dallas Cowboys and Buffalo Bills. The American team got on the board on its first drive when Solomon Patton, wide receiver for the University of Florida Gators, took the ball for 33 yards on a reverse play. Danny O’Brien, quarterback for the Catawba College Indians, then ran the ball on the final play into the end zone giving his team a 6-0, lead. The National team responded at the start of the second quarter when Corey Robinson, quarterback for the Troy University Trojans, completed two passes bringing the team 28 yards down the field. That set up Drew Basil, kicker for the Ohio State University Buckeyes, to make a 40-yard field goal making the score 6-3. The National team fumbled a punt at midfield which Marcus Whitfield, linebacker for the University of Maryland Terrapins, recovered. The Americans took

Dexter Moody, safety with the Albany State University Golden Rams, tackles D.J. Coles, wide receiver for the Virginia Tech Hokies, during the Medal of Honor Bowl at the Johnson Hagood Memorial Stadium in Charleston, S.C., Jan. 11. The bowl was host to the American team (white), coached by Ralph Friedgen, former University of Maryland Head Coach, and the National team (black), coached by Chan Gailey, former head coach for the National Football League’s Dallas Cowboys and Buffalo Bills.

advantage, using a 26-yard pass from Joe Clancy, quarterback for the Merrimack College Warriors, to Patton to set up a 19-yard touchdown run by Dee J. Adams, tailback for the Portland State Vikings, to make it 13-3 after a field goal with eight minutes left in the second quarter. A 16-yard run by Colin Lockett, wide receiver for the San Diego State University Aztecs, and a 15-yard pass from Clancy to Patton helped the team drive 51 yards toward the end zone. This set up Adams to make the final touchdown of the game bringing the score to 20-3 two minutes into the fourth quarter. Patton is credited with 98 yards that set up all three American team touchdowns for a 20-3 victory against the National team. Patton caught three passes for 50 yards, had a rush for 33 and returned a kickoff for 15 more to earn the American Most Valuable Player honors. Deron Furr, safety for the University of Memphis Tigers, earned the MVP honors for the National team for making six tackles, including a shared sack, and two pass deflections. The Medal of Honor Bowl is a premier all-star game featuring the nation’s top draft-eligible college football players as projected for the NFL draft. The game honors Medal of Honor recipients, some of whom attended and were recognized before the game, and the game’s beneficiaries, the Medal of Honor Museum Foundation and the Wounded Warrior Project.

Retired Marine Maj. Gen. James Livingston, a Congressional Medal of Honor recipient, flips the coin before the kickoff during the Medal Of Honor Bowl at the Johnson Hagood Memorial Stadium in Charleston, S.C., Jan. 11. Livingston received the Medal of Honor for his role as an infantry company commander at Dai Do, Vietnam, during a three-day battle in which the 2nd Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment, numbering only 800 men, defeated 10,000 or more North Vietnamese Army soldiers.


The Jet Stream

In Other News

Friday, January 17, 2014

An F/A-18C Hornet, assigned to the “Checkerboards” of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 312, lands on the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75). The USS Harry S. Truman, flagship for the Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group, is deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility conducting maritime security operations, supporting theater security cooperation efforts and Operation Enduring Freedom.

Checkerboards support Operation Enduring Freedom Petty Oficer 3rd Class Laura Hoover USS Harry S. Truman

GULF OF OMAN– Marines assigned to the "Checkerboards" of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 312, embarked on the aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75), continued their support of Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) Dec. 19. VMFA-312, stationed out of Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, S.C., is one of eight squadrons deployed with the USS Harry S. Truman in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility. “One of the ship’s main missions while we are out here is to support Operation Enduring Freedom,” said Lt. Col. Joseph Reedy, VMFA 312 commanding officer. “With thousands of Marines, soldiers, sailors and airmen on the ground in Afghanistan, our pri-

mary task is to be overhead for those guys. With the sensors we have on the jet, we can look down and see around them and hopefully prevent any enemy combatants from attacking our forces.” Reedy said with his command being small in numbers, the reliance on each other to get the job done is higher than that of a larger command. “It makes us tight,” he said. “So I would say our bond as Marines has bound us close together and, I think I was just blessed with a group of really good Marines. They get along with each other and they recognize the importance of our mission.” Whether it’s fixing flight equipment, line shacks or last minute emergencies, the Checkerboards understand their job and the importance of it. “We make sure all the jets [take] off by

working with engines, fuel cells, tires, and any maintenance that needs to be done,” said Cpl. Jeffrey Lawson. “As a Checkerboard we all help each other out. We do a great job of overcoming challenges out here. My shop and squadron do a really good job of adapting to the changes and getting our jobs done regardless of what comes up. We may not be ship’s company, but the camaraderie and hospitality is above and beyond what I am used to. I love doing what we do, in a place where it matters.” Reedy enjoys being aboard the USS Harry S. Truman, but acknowledged that learning to get the job done in a shipboard environment was challenging. However, his Marines rose to the occasion and got the job done. “I am really happy with how the squadron really stepped up, worked really hard and

integrated with our Navy peers,” he said. “I think the entire squadron is accomplishing a lot so far in this deployment.” Lance Cpl. Gregory Charrier, a flight equipment technician, credits everyone’s ability to challenge each other as the reason his squadron is so strong. “We handle each other really well,” he said. “We have been around each other for about a year and we are like a family but we don’t get too relaxed, we stay on our ‘A’ game. We adapt and overcome because we look at the Marines to the left and right of us to push us through.” The USS Harry S. Truman, flagship for the Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group, is deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet AOR conducting maritime security operations, supporting theater security cooperation efforts and supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.


The Jet Stream

Friday, January 17, 2014



The Jet Stream

Friday, January 17, 2014



The Jet Stream

Friday, January 17, 2014



The Jet Stream

Around The Corps

Friday, January 17, 2014

Corps Bits

Super Stallions train for confined area landings FUTENMA, Okinawa -- CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter and crew members executed confined area landing training Jan. 3 at Marine Corps Air Station Futenma in preparation for future deployments and to maintain the high-level of readiness demanded of their profession. The helicopters and crew are with Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 463, currently assigned to Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 265 (Reinforced), 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, III Marine Expeditionary Force, under the unit deployment program. Confined area landing is a technique used by helicopter squadrons when runways or formal landing zones are unavailable, according to Cpl. James J. Eck, a CH-53E crew chief with the squadron. “These landings are made for dropping off Marines and gear in tactical environments,” said Eck. “Helicopters don’t require a runway to land and are capable of landing in limited areas, which makes it perfect for tactical missions.” This training was part of the squadron’s preparation for deployments with the 31st MEU, including training in Korea, according to Capt. Brian P. Spillane, a CH-53E pilot and the training officer with the squadron. “This training helps us by sharpening the skills of our more experienced Marines and developing new skills in our junior Marines,” said Spillane. “This way they’ll be better prepared for real-life scenarios.” This landing technique is useful for maneuver warfare and disaster relief operations as well, according to Capt. Devin F. Kelly, a CH53E pilot with the squadron. “The (Super) Stallions can carry a max weight of 36,000 pounds of personnel and equipment and can land in confined areas,” said Kelly. “This makes them critical for tactical insertions on the battlefield as well as being capable of delivering humanitarian aid, such as food, water and other essentials, to remote villages or (affected) areas.” The CH-53Es tactical capabilities were used in previous humanitarian and disaster relief operations such as the aid provided after a devastating typhoon in the Philippines and earthquakes in Indonesia in 2009, according to Kelly. “The CH-53E is perfect for both humanitarian and combat scenarios thanks to its landing abilities,” said Kelly. “It is for that reason we train to use every advantage this (aircraft) gives us.”

Photos by Lance Cpl. Andrew Kuppers

Marines and Sailors with the Maritime Raid Force, 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, move toward a CH-53E Super Stallion with Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 265 (Reinforced), 31st MEU, to be extracted at the end of a night raid here, Jan. 9. The raid was the first event of the Realistic Urban Training Exercise, which is part of the pre-deployment training for the 31st MEU’s regularly scheduled spring patrol. The training is designed and evaluated by Special Operations Training Group, III Marine Expeditionary Force, in order to challenge the full spectrum of MRF capabilities. The 31st MEU is the Marine Corps’ force in readiness in the Asia-Pacific region and is the only continuously forward-deployed MEU.

31st MEU raids Camp Courtney at night Lance Cpl. David Hershey

3rd Marine Expeditionary Force

CAMP COURTNEY, Okinawa, Japan -- Cutting through the night, a CH-53E Super Stallion descends to an insertion point and holds its position more than 30 feet from the ground. Ropes fly out of its opened back and the churning wind from the rotors pelts the Marines as they glide to the ground and swiftly set a security perimeter. The assault force closes on its target as the helicopter departs. Marines with the Maritime Raid Force, 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, executed a night raid here, Jan. 9, as part of the Realistic Urban Training Exercise. Following their insertion by aircraft from Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 265 (Reinforced), 31st MEU, within a security perimeter provided

by riflemen from the MEU’s Battalion Landing Team 2nd Battalion, 5th Marines, the MRF’s Force Reconnaissance platoon advanced on the targeted facility. Waiting inside was an armed force ready and prepared to resist the MRF advance. A reactive enemy firing simulated ammunition provided the realistic combat environment needed for the training. “To refine our skills, we have to do these realistic hits with live role players,” said Cpl. Dru R. Turner, a team medic with FRP, MRF, 31st MEU and a native of Zephyr Hills, Fla. “You’re going to act differently if you know there are actual people inside and they are going to shoot back at you. A live enemy (roleplayer) is going to react to what we’re doing and that enhances the training.” The complex raid required

the small force to clear and search 27 separate areas while engaging the enemy, managing casualties, securing captured combatants and searching for intelligence. The training is designed and evaluated by Special Operations Training Group, III Marine Expeditionary Force, in order to challenge the full spectrum of MRF capabilities. Realism combined with complexity is the common theme for SOTG’s predeployment training package. “One of our biggest goals, balanced with safety, is to make the training as realistic as possible,” said Capt. Kevin P. Jones, the assistant officer-in-charge of the Expeditionary Warfare Branch, SOTG, III MEF, and a native of San Antonio, Texas. “It is called Realistic Urban Training Exercise after all.” After successfully neutralizing

the enemy force and gathering valuable intelligence for future RUTEX operations, the Marines again loaded a CH-53E helicopter to extract. Reflecting on their recent actions, both the MRF and their SOTG observers came away with a feeling of satisfaction from the raid. “There are always things to work on, but they performed to the high level expected of a Maritime Raid Force,” said Jones, a native of San Antonio, Texas. This raid was the first in a series of scenarios for RUTEX and is part of the 31st MEU’s predeployment training in preparation for their regularly scheduled Spring Patrol. The 31st MEU is the Marine Corps’ force in readiness in the Asia-Pacific region and is the only continuously forward-deployed MEU.

SOTG prepares 2/1 Marines for MEU CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. – Special Operations Training Group hosted assault, support, and security training for Marines with 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines aboard Camp Pendleton, Calif., Jan. 7. SOTG organized the training to expand and refine skills necessary before 2/1’s deployment as a Marine Expeditionary Unit. Master Sgt. Ryan Nuvill, the SOTG operations chief, designs the training to perfect how units conduct raids, call for supporting fire, and establish security against the enemy in the event of a counter attack. “We give the Marines this training to prepare them for an attack or raid before it actually happens,” Nuvill said. “ We teach them the techniques so they can go back to their units with confidence, and hopefully bring the training back to their junior Marines.” Cpl. Daniel Kitchens, a Marine with 2/1 says the military operations on urbanized terrain have been going well. “We are conducting movements through a mount town, practicing with flash bangs, and learning different ways to breach doors,” Kitchens said. “All of the events have been running smoothly and I think the Marines are learning a lot.” Throughout the week, the Marines will also be conducting exercises in other areas of training. “Over the next few days, the Marines will call in air support and conduct round robin training,” Nuvill said. “Ultimately, we will put everything together in a final raid to test all of the skills they have learned.” Kitchens says training events like this help the Marine Corps improve combat efficiency. “The exercises boost Marines confidence and gives them the skills they need to conduct raids and set up security,” Kitchens said. “ The Marine Corps is very progressive and these training events make our units prepared for anything they have to do.”

Corps Shot Sgt. Isaac Lamberth

CAMP PENDLETON, Calif., -Sgt. Jonathan Ayala, cyber network operator, hands radio antenna equipment to Staff Sgt. Christopher M. Phibbs, cyber network chief, both with the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit, during a communications exercise aboard Camp Pendleton, Calif., Jan. 6. The exercise is designed to prepare 15th MEU Marines for Exercise Iron Fist.

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Fightertown deployed: VMFA-312 Checkerboards are currently deployed to the Mediterranean to promote security in the region.

of more than nine years. “He constantly makes me want to improve myself and become a better person. He’s an inspiration to me, and I’m sure he was an inspiration to those men that he was with that day.” Williams was part of a joint Afghan National Army and Marine team when the ambush occurred. Williams’ element was tasked with investigating a weapons cache in the local area. The element was making their way through a wooded area when the first shots rang out. The enemy chose a poor location for the ambush, Williams said. If his team had been a few hundred meters to the West then they would have been completely surrounded. Because of their poor positioning, the insurgents were steadily pushed back. Williams’ element had the upper hand

Infantry Marines with 31st MEU drop in for fast-rope training Lance Cpl. Natalie Rostran

3rd MEF/Marine Corps Installations Pacific

CAMP HANSEN, Okinawa - Hearts racing, but with steady hands, the Marines grasped the rope that dangled from the helicopter hovering 30 feet in the air. Relying on their training, they took the plunge. More than 100 Marines with 2nd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, executed helicopter rope suspension training with the support of CH-53E Super Stallion helicopters with Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 463 Jan. 8 on Camp Hansen. The helicopters and crew with HMH463, are currently assigned to Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 265 (Reinforced), 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, III Marine Expeditionary Force, under the unit deployment program. The infantrymen of 2nd Bn., 5th Marines, are currently assigned to the 31st MEU, III MEF, under the UDP. Helicopter rope suspension training is essential for infantry Marines, equipping them with the skill set needed for tactical insertion into areas without the need for the aircraft to touch down, according to Sgt. Gregory J. Dominguez, a machine gun section leader with the battalion. “We’re practicing fast-roping for insertion capabilities by (simulating) a raid objective, coming around the target, and fast-roping in by surprise,” said Dominguez. “It gives us a quick insertion on the ground. That way we can jump in, complete the task, and move into another position.” For some of the Marines involved, the training marked the first use of the essential technique, according to 1st Lt. Thomas G. Scovel, an infantry officer with the battalion. “It’s important for our Marines to gain familiarity with the aviation combat element while they’re with the MEU,” said Scovel. “For some of them, it’s their first time fast-roping

Corps Bits

are currently deployed to the Western Pacific as part of the Unit Deployment Program.

until tragedy struck. The team leader was shot, immediately changing the climate of the battle. MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP PENDLE“We had pretty good control of the TON, Calif. -- Patrolling between a tree situation up until Jason was shot, that’s line and a row of buildings, Staff Sgt. when everything changed and I knew Timothy Williams and his squad heard what I had to do,” Williams said. the sharp cracks of rifles and immediateWithout hesitation and still under ly realized they were being ambushed. heavy enemy fire, Williams rushed out Outnumbered and under heavy enemy from cover to aid his wounded team fire, Williams, a section leader with 1st leader and carried him nearly 1,000 feet Reconnaissance Battalion, found himself to the safety of the medical evacuation relying on his instincts and training to platform. protect himself and his Marines. “When someone is under fire they don’t Williams, a native of Hudson, Mich., rise to the occasion, they just fall back on received the Silver Star Medal and the their training,” Williams said. “Jason is one Purple Heart for his actions that day durof the best men that I have ever trained ing an award ceremony held at Camp Las with and he credits me with saving his Flores here, Jan. 7. life even though he taught me most of “I couldn’t be more proud of all that he the things that saved him that day. In a has done,” said Jill Williams, Williams’ wife way, he saved his own life.” Aware that others still needed his help, Williams rushed back to the forefront of the fight and continued assaulting the enemy. Williams maneuvered the force across the open terrain destroying enemy positions and killing approximately 20 insurgents during the 10 hour battle. Williams served 4 years in the Navy aboard the USS Stout and was honorably discharged before he enlisted in the Marine Corps May 5th, 2005. “I joined the Navy before 9/11 and I didn’t really have any direction in life,” Williams said. “After 9/11 when I saw a lot of my friends joining the Marines, I realized that I wanted a change and the Marine Corps was the best fit for me.” Once in the Marine Corps, Williams knew he wanted to challenge himself further. Having already had multiple occupations in the military, he knew that becoming a reconnaissance Marine was one of the biggest challenges to conquer. “My wrestling coach would always tell me that if I wanted to be great then I would have to spend my life surrounding myself with great people and great Lieutenant Gen. John Toolan, commanding general of I Marine Expeditionary Force, things,” Williams said. “I moved to 1st Reoversees the reenlistment of Staff Sgt. Timothy Williams, a section leader with 1st con Battalion, and I instantly knew that Reconnaissance Battalion, during an award ceremony held at Camp Las Flores, Marine these were the greatest guys that I could Corps Base Camp Pendleton Calif., Jan. 7, 2014. Williams, a native of Hudson, Mich., was possibly train or live with.” awarded the Silver Star Medal and Purple Heart for his heroic actions in Afghanistan Many people see Williams’ actions July when he maintained a tactical advantage while being ambushed by a larger enemy 10, 2012 as outstanding acts of courage. force. Williams helped save the lives of multiple Marines and destroyed several enemy Williams believes his actions were a repositions during the 10 hour attack. flection of the men to his left and right. 1st Marine Division


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Reconnaissance Marine awarded Silver Star Medal, Purple Heart Lance Cpl. Jonathan Boynes

Friday, January 17, 2014

while on Okinawa.” This vital training is indispensable for infantry Marines to maintain mission readiness, according to Dominguez. “It’s important for the Marines to be comfortable with their gear coming down (the rope),” said Dominguez. “In a hostile environment, they can’t be scared of coming down from the helicopter. They have to be focused.” Supporting the Marines’ training also assisted the helicopter pilots with keeping their own skills sharp, according to Maj. Neil E. Oswald, a pilot with the squadron. “Doing fast-roping requires us to keep a precision hover,” said Oswald. “Precision hovers are used for the rapid insertions, rappelling, (special purpose insertion/extraction) and fast-roping. We also use them for exter-

nals, where we hover over a load, either a Humvee or an artillery piece, and maintain a very precise hover as the (Marines on the ground) attach our hooks to the cargo.” After gaining familiarity with the rope by executing the maneuver while wearing minimal equipment, the Marines then rappelled with a full pack and weapon. The Marines need to be as comfortable as possible with the techniques because a crisis or contingency can arise at a moment’s notice in the Asia-Pacific region, according to Dominguez. “It’s not hard, as long as you practice,” said Dominguez. “When you practice and you’re comfortable with all the equipment, your job, everything really becomes second nature.”

Marines practice their fast-roping techniques Jan. 8 at Camp Hansen. The Marines fastroped down from a CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter in a precision hover at 30 feet. More than 100 infantrymen completed two iterations, one with minimal equipment and the second with full packs and weapons. The Marines are with 2nd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, currently assigned to the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, III Marine Expeditionary Force. The helicopter and crew are with Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 463, currently assigned to Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 265 (Reinforced), 31st MEU, III MEF, both part of the unit deployment program.

Marines honor fallen WWII Silver Star recipient WILLIMANTIC, Conn. - Many have heard the phrase “Once a Marine, always a Marine.” The Marines of Company F, 2nd Battalion, 25th Marine Regiment ensure it is a phrase that is not forgotten. The inspector instructor staff of Co. F, 2nd Bn., 25th Marines, provides military honors at the funerals of Marines who have passed away. On Jan. 10, a funeral service was held at the New Willimantic Cemetery in Willimantic, Conn., to honor Michael B. Selavka, who was a Marine Corps staff sergeant and received the Silver Star Medal for his gallant and heroic actions during World War II. “It’s an honor to be able to support the families of those Marines that pass away,” said Staff Sgt. Daniel Bluemle, the training chief of Co. F. “It’s never easy to do these ceremonies especially because it’s our brother or sister who is being buried. Whether you served in World War II or are serving now, Marines are all family.” Along with the Marines, friends and family surrounded the burial site to pay their respects to a hero. There was not a dry eye amongst the crowd as Selavka was lowered into his resting place. “When my dad had gone off to war in Vietnam, I often went to spend time with my uncle,” said retired Coast Guard Capt. Michael Selavka, Selavka’s nephew. “He was just a huge influence on my life. He was always a gentleman and inspired me to seek a career in the service. He will be missed.” Marines, both past and present, share a bond that can never be broken regardless of the time in which they served, according to Pfc. Tien M. Le, a rifleman assigned to 2nd Bn., 25th Marines. “It’s an honor to be able to have a part in ceremonies like this,” said Le. “This Marine was a Silver Star recipient, he was a hero, it’s because of men like these that I can call myself a Marine today.”

Lake Placid native receives Bronze Star MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. -- Corporal Joshua M. McKee, a rifleman with India Company, 3rd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, received the Bronze Star medal with combat distinguishing device during an award ceremony aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C., Dec. 27. “Receiving the Bronze Star is more than an honor,” said McKee, 23, and a native of Lake Placid, Fla. “But when it’s all said and done, I was just doing my job.” The bronze star medal is an individual military award of the U.S armed forces. It is awarded for acts of heroism, merit or meritorious service in a combat zone. When awarded for acts of heroism, the medal is awarded with a combat distinguishing device. The Bronze Star is the fourth highest combat decoration and the 10th highest U.S. military award. McKee received the award for his efforts during an insurgent attack while standing guard at forward operating base Hansen, during 3rd Battalion, 8th Marines’ previous deployment to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom from May 2012 to Nov. 2012. While taking heavy fire, McKee took cover and was able to call for help. “The day I was injured, I was on post at the entry-control point (ECP) as sergeant of the guard,” explained McKee. “A man dressed as an Afghan police rode up on a motorcycle, and when we started to walk toward him, he just started shooting at us.” “We interacted with the local police all the time, but when rounds started to fly by me, that’s when I noticed the Afghans had circled around us,” said McKee. “Even though I was shot in my upper thigh, I managed to call for help and we took them down.” Among those present to congratulate McKee on his bravery, heroism and courage was 1st Lt. Jonathon Harris, whom also pinned the medal on McKee. During the deployment, Harris served as McKee’s platoon commander and was present at the base during the time of the attack, and holds McKee in the highest regards. “The fact that McKee was bleeding everywhere, but remained vigilant the entire time ensuring that no other threats existed, was an act of a true hero,” said Harris. “McKee’s actions that day hands down prevented the loss of several Marines’ and coalition forces’ lives; he’s a hero and someone I look up to 100 percent.”


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More of The Story

BENGALS continued from page 1

This deployment will be especially beneficial for our squadron’s junior Marines by giving them the tools to continue developing in their [Military Occupational Specialty] and as Marines. It will also show everyone how vital they are to not only our squadron’s mission, but the larger mission of the Marine Corps as well.” The Marine Corps utilizes UDP’s to improve unit continuity and reduce the number of accompanied tours.

(Top) Sgt. Dustin Conrady, an avionics technician with Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 31 aboard Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, says goodbye to his 4-year-old son Ayden before deploying with Marine All-Weather Fighter Attack Squadron 224 to the Western Pacific in support of the Unit Deployment Program, Jan. 9. The mission of the deployment is to improve relations with America’s allies and expose Marines to broader training environments.

Stingers back from Smokin’ Aces Cpl. Sarah Cherry Staff Writer

Marines with Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 31 returned from a six-month deployment to Afghanistan, Jan. 10. The Marines deployed as part of MALS-40 to provide logistical support such as maintenance, ordnance and supply for 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing (forward). “The most important task we had while deployed was supporting the flightline, making sure that they had their parts and ordnance ready so they could run combat missions with their aircraft,” said Maj. Patrick Haines, the MALS-40 executive officer for the deployment. The MALS-31 Marines combined with detachments from various aviation logistics squadrons to form MALS40. Marines had the opportunity to work with service members with varied jobs in a deployed capacity. “Going out there, you see people go beyond the wire and go into combat and get to help them,” said Lance Cpl. Carolyn Meece, a maintenance administration specialist with MALS-31 from Morristown, Tenn. “You actually get to see it from a different perspective. It helped me as a Marine. I’m very thankful I went on this deployment.” Family and friends rejoined with returning Marines, smiling and tearful. “It is amazing to be back!” said Meece. “I’m so happy to be around my friends and family. I’m going to miss the people from deployment, but it is amazing seeing all these beautiful faces again, and I’m glad to be back Marines unload luggage from a flatbed truck upon returning from a six-month deployment to Afghanistan, Jan. 10. The Marines provided intermediate logistic support to 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing (forward). in Beaufort.”

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All Hands on Deck:

Petty Officer 2nd Class David Didier USS Harry S. Truman

The "Checkerboards" of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 312 held a change of command ceremony on board the aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75), Dec. 26, while visiting the Medditeranean. Lt. Col. Nathan Miller relieved Lt. Col. Joseph Reedy as commanding officer of VMFA-312. Reedy had commanded the squadron since Dec. 1, 2011. Reedy said it was the attitude of his squadron that made him the most proud as its commanding officer. “The thing that I am most proud of for the squadron is the attitude of every single Marine to accomplish the mission,” said Reedy. “Every single one of those Marines understand that when a jet [launches] off the front [of the carrier], it’s supporting guys on the ground — Marines, Soldiers, Sailors and Airman that need that overhead air support.” Miller most recently served with VMFA251 as that squadron’s executive officer during its 2012 combat deployment aboard USS Enterprise (CVN 65), supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. “It is truly an honor to be chosen to serve as your commanding officer,” said Miller during the Change of Command ceremony. “It’s not just about the two

commanders, it’s about everything that these Marines and sailors have done to be successful in combat. What better place to have a change of command than on a warship at sea represented by Marines and Sailors.” Miller received his commission in 1995 from the Air Force Academy and completed tours of duty with the “Deathrattlers” of VMFA-323; 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, Okinawa, Japan; the “Sharp Shooters” of Marine Fighter Attack Training Squadron 101; the “Blue Angles” of the Navy’s Flight Demonstration Squadron; the “Thunderbolts” of VMFA-251; and Marine Aircraft Group 31. Commandant of the Marine Corps, Gen. James Amos; Vice Adm. John Miller, commander, Naval Forces Central Command/ U.S. 5th Fleet/Combined Maritime Forces; Brigadier General Gregg Olson, commander, Marine Forces Central Command-Forward; Sgt. Maj. of the Marine Corps Michael Barrett; and Medal of Honor winner Sgt. Dakota Meyer attended the ceremony. The “Checkerboards” of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 312 were commissioned on June 1, 1943, at Page Field in Parris Island, S.C., and is currently deployed as part of Carrier Air Wing 3, stationed aboard USS Harry S. Truman in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

Friday, January 17, 2014


Checkerboards welcome new CO aboard USS Truman


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Friday, January 17, 2014

6 March 2014 MCAS Theater Doors open at 1300 Shows starts at 1400

Open to Active Duty Marines and Sailors Only

Free popcorn, soda, and hot dogs! Prize giveaways during the event including:

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Actual performer

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Beats by Dr. Dre, and Xbox One.

We would like to thank New River Auto Mall for their sponsorship of MCCS events and activities. The Department of Defense (DoD) and the Marine Corps neither endorse nor favor any commercial supplier, product, or service.

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Back in the saddle Cpl. Brady Wood Staff Writer

Marines aboard Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort attended mission-oriented training upon returning to work from the end of the year holidays, Jan. 6-7. The brief, titled “Back in the Saddle,” allowed units to refocus on mission priorities and complete required annual training on certain subjects. Subjects covered during the training included Operational Risk Management, sexual assault and harassment, Victims’ Legal Counsel Organization, off-duty education and Semper Fit. “I am a big believer in prevention through education,” said Staff Sgt. Lawrence Jones, Marine Aircraft Group 31 ground safety manager. “I believe that even without it being a conscious decision, a Marine will do what he was trained to do. It is beneficial to them and their unit.” The training gave Marines a perspective on what happened throughout the previous year, and what they can expect in the current year such as deployments and training. Last year, the Commandant of the Marine Corps released a reawakening message, where he expressed the need for every Marine get back to what a noncommissioned officer should be. “The reawakening message and BITS training are closely related when you think about it,” said Cpl. Giovanni Figueroa, an air traffic controller with Marine Air Control Squadron 2, Detachment A. “The reawakening dealt with us coming back to the image of what a Marine should be. While BITS training is preparing us for what is expected of us and reawakening the Marine after the holidays.” Back in the Saddle training is held annually so Marines have the tools to maintain operational standards, unit readiness and the image the Corps has shaped over the past 238 years.

Parris Island to open 2014 tax filing center Jan. 31 for military personnel in Beaufort, S.C., area Gunnery Sgt. Bill Lisbon

Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island

PARRIS ISLAND, S.C. -- The Parris Island tax center is scheduled to open Jan. 31, to provide free income tax filing assistance to Beaufort-area military personnel. The center, located in building 911 on Cuba Street, is available to active duty service members, retirees, family members and activated reservists for help with both state and federal returns.

Department of Defense civilian employees are not eligible to use the tax center. The tax center will be open weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. for appointments, except Mondays and Wednesdays from 1-4 p.m. for walk-ins only. Those with special circumstances who need assistance at different times will be considered on a case-by-case basis with priority given for drill instructors and deploying personnel. While all returns or extension

requests must be filed by April 15 to avoid penalties, the center will remain open until April 30. In coordination with the Internal Revenue Service, the Parris Island legal services support team supervises the annual operation of the center, which is staffed by Marines as part of the federally sponsored Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program. Last year, Parris Island tax preparers prepared 1,005 federal tax returns and 935 state returns that resulted in approximately

$2.6 million in refunds - saving personnel approximately $200,000 in preparation fees, said Capt. Richard Blanchette, tax center officer in change. The Marines assigned to the tax center have completed advanced tax preparer training and are certified, said Staff Sgt. Lawrence D. Smith, tax center chief. Users of the tax center are asked to bring their military identification, Social Security cards for each family member claimed on the return, W-2,

W-2G, 1099-R and 1099-Misc forms, last year’s return and any other documents that may relate to income. W-2s for active duty and reserve Marines are scheduled to be available on the MyPay website by Jan. 15. Other services are set for Jan. 24, and retirees’ 1099R forms were posted on Dec. 18. Parris Island opened its first tax assistance center in 1994. For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact the tax center at 228-3547.


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Friday, January 17, 2014


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Home at last, Honoring the dream, Fighting Bengals into Western Pacific