A Marine with Company I descends down a thick, plaited rope rigged to a CH-46E Sea Knight flown by pilots with Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 268 (Reinforced) onto USS Makin Island's flight deck here May 16. The company is one of three rifle companies in Battalion Landing Team 3/1, the ground combat element for the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit. The unit embarked the ship, as well as USS New Orleans and USS Pearl Harbor in San Diego Nov. 14, beginning a seven-month deployment to the Western Pacific, Horn of Africa and Middle East regions. Photo by Cpl. Gene Allen Ainsworth III.