2nd MAW Marines Hike, Build Operational Readiness

2nd MAW Marines Hike, Build Operational Readiness

The Marines of Marine Air Support Squadron 1 perform a conditioning hike at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, N.C., Sept. 30, 2014. Photo by Cpl Grace L. Waladkewics.

CHERRY POINT, N.C. (Oct. 6, 2014) - 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing is back to the basics – boots are pounding the pavement to build unit cohesion, camaraderie and reinforce the combat mindset.

MajGen Robert F. Hedelund, commanding general of 2nd MAW, and SgtMaj Christopher G. Robinson, sergeant major for the wing, led the Marines of Marine Wing Headquarters Squadron 2 on a three-mile conditioning hike Sept. 26 at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, N.C.

The overall purpose of the hike was to display the squadron's initiative to obtain operational excellence, said SSgt Julio Rodriguez, the operations chief for MWHS-2.

"These hikes are a great example of Marines receiving their commander's intent, designing a plan and orchestrating it across a whole squadron," said Rodriguez, a Houston native.

The hikes are great opportunities to let the noncommissioned officers step-up and lead from the front, said Rodriguez.

"For NCOs, this is their chance to show their leaders they understand their capabilities, limitations and roles for taking back their Marines Corps," he said.

According to 1stLt Edwin Roman, Marine Air Support Squadron 1 has been incorporating conditioning hikes with varied amounts of gear throughout the past several months.

Hikes are a great way test Marines both physically and mentally, said Roman, the executive officer of communication and electronics company, MASS-1, and native of Jacksonville, N.C.

Marines hike together and motivate each other to keep going and push through their barriers, and build a bond of brotherhood the Marine Corps is known for, said Roman.

"We are Marines first, and need to embrace everything that means," said Roman. "Marines never leave anyone behind. Hikes are a great way to get the Marines to motivate each other to finish a mission."

According to MajGen Robert F. Hedelund, commanding general of 2nd MAW, this is just the beginning for the Marines of Cherry Point. The Marines can expect more hikes coming soon with greater distances and more gear.

The MAW plans to participate in future hikes with higher headquarters.

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