PhotoLibrary_SnipersofVMFT401_thumbnail_180x102LtCol William Sheridan pilots a F-5N above the grounds of Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Ariz., on July 15, 2016. The "Snipers" of VMFT-401 are the United States Marine Corps' only adversary squadron. The squadron is manned by highly experienced Marine fighter pilots each averaging well more than 2,500 flight hours in tactical fighter aircraft. All "Sniper" pilots are air combat tactics instructors and most are graduates of "Top Gun" or the Marine Corp' Weapons and Tactics Instructor (WTI) course. Photo by Cpl Conner Robbins.
PhotoLibrary_ShadowoftheOsprey_thumbnail_180x102An MV-22B Osprey takes flight to transport Marines to conduct a tactical recovery of aircraft and personnel training mission during the Amphibious Squadron 5 and 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit Integration exercise aboard amphibious transport dock ship USS Somerset (LPD 25) July 16, 2016. PMINT is a 2-week training evolution between the Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group and 11th MEU, allowing Marines and sailors to combine and employ their forces together for their first at-sea period in preparation for their Western Pacific 16-2 deployment. The Marines are with Alpha Co., Battalion Landing Team 1st Bn., 4th Marines; the Osprey and its crew are with Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 163; both are currently assigned to the 11th MEU. Photo by LCpl Zachery C. Laning.
PhotoLibrary_TeufelHunden_090616_thumbnail_180x102Marines and sailors with Battalion Landing Team, 3rd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, participated in a Teufel Hunden, or Devil Dog, challenge August 12, 2016, on Camp Lejeune North Carolina. Companies competed against each other in sprint relays, pugil stick fighting, a pull-up and push-up competition, ground fighting and a high-intensity tactical training course. The field meet was organized to build camaraderie among the Marines and sailors. Photo by LCpl Melanye Martinez.
PhotoLibrary_Turret_Duty_thumbnail_180x102LCpl Nick J. Padia, a gunner, stands turret duty at Cultana Training Area, South Australia, Australia, July 1, 2016. The Marines reached their first objectives during Exercise Hamel, a trilateral training exercise with Australian, New Zealand, and U.S. forces to enhance cooperation, trust, and friendship. Padia, from Chandler, Arizona, is with Weapons Company, 1st Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, Marine Rotational Force - Darwin. Photoby LCpl Osvaldo L. Ortega III.
PhotoLibrary_Cultana_Training_Area_thumbnail_180x102Marines with 1st Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, Marine Rotational Force Darwin, prepare for a possible attack at the break of dawn during Exercise Hamel in Cultana Training Area, South Australia, Australia, July 9, 2016. Exercise Hamel is a trilateral training exercise with Australian, New Zealand, and U.S. forces to enhance cooperation, trust, and friendship. Photo by LCpl Osvaldo L. Ortega III.
PhotoLibrary_Humvee_Repairs_thumbnail_180x102Marines with Headquarters and Service Company, 1st Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, Marine Rotational Force Darwin, fix a humvee during Exercise Hamel at Cultana Training Area, South Australia, Australia, July 8, 2016. Exercise Hamel is a trilateral training exercise with Australian, New Zealand, and U.S. forces to enhance cooperation, trust, and friendship. Photo by Cpl Mandaline Hatch.
PhotoLibrary_Fast_Rope_Training_thumbnail_180x102Marines assigned to Maritime Raid Force, 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit, conduct a fast rope training exercise during a deployment on the amphibious assault ship USS Wasp (LHD-1) July 5, 2016. 22nd MEU is conducting Naval operations in the U.S. 6th Fleet area in support of U.S. national security interests in Europe. Photo by LCpl Koby I. Saunders.
PhotoLibrary_Combat_Course_thumbnail_180x102A Candidate with Alpha Company, Officer Candidate School conducts the Combat Course at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Va., June 20, 2016. The mission of OCS is to educate and train officer candidates in order to evaluate and screen individuals for qualities required for commissioning as a Marine Corps officer. Photo by LCpl Jose Villalobosrocha.
PhotoLibrary-Rapidly_Effectively_thumbnail_180x102U.S. Marine Corps Cpl Kyle Hancock, a fire team leader with Company C, Marine Wing Support Squadron 373, Special Purpose Marine Air Ground Task Force - Crisis Response - Central Command 16.2, fires an M249 light machine gun during a familiarization range at an undisclosed location in Southwest Asia, June 8, 2016. SPMAGTF-CR-CC is forward deployed in several host nations, with the ability to respond to a variety of contingencies rapidly and effectively. Photo by Sgt Donald Holbert.
PhotoLibrary-Man_on_Wire_thumbnail_180x102Marines assigned to Officer Candidate School (OCS) participate in the Combat Course aboard Marine Corps Base Quantico, Virginia, May 11, 2016. The mission of OCS is to educate and train candidates in order to evaluate and screen individuals for qualities required for commissioning as a Marine Corps officer. Photo by Cpl Laura Mercado.
PhotoLibrary-Got_Your_Back_thumbnail_180x102Marines with the 7th Engineer Support Battalion, 1st Marine Logistics Group, go through mock breachings as part of group training. The training includes working with simulated explosives as well as breaching doors and windows at Camp Pendleton, California, May 25, 2016. Photo by LCpl Salmineo Sherman, Jr.
PhotoLibrary-Montford_Point_Challenge_thumbnail_180x102Marines assigned to Officer Candidate School participate in the Montford Point challenge aboard Marine Corps Base Quantico, Virginia, May 19, 2016. The challenge consisted of a supply run where the Marines went through obstacles and faced similar physical challenges as the Montford Point Marines. Photo by Cpl Laura Mercado.
PhotoLibrary_ThroughTheSmoke_thumbnail_180x102A Marine attending the Military Police Basic Course, runs to cover during a field training exercise at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., May 11, 2016. The purpose of the course is to provide entry level pipeline and lateral move Marines the knowledge and skills to become disciplined, motivated and capable of performing the duties and responsibilities of military occupational specialty 5811, Military Police. Marine Corps photo by Sgt James R. Skelton.
PhotoLibrary_FastRope_thumbnail_180x102A Marine attending the Military Police Basic Course, runs to cover during a field training exercise at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., May 11, 2016. The purpose of the course is to provide entry level pipeline and lateral move Marines the knowledge and skills to become disciplined, motivated and capable of performing the duties and responsibilities of military occupational specialty 5811, Military Police. Marine Corps photo by Sgt James R. Skelton.
PhotoLibrary_Targets_thumbnail_180x102Cpl Matthew Waltzer, a rifleman with Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, fires a round from close range at a target during a combat marksmanship range near Naval Air Station Sigonella, Italy, May 16, 2016. Part of Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force Crisis Response-Africa, the company enhanced their proficiency with the M4A1 service rifle in squad-based scenarios and dynamic shooting drills. Marine Corps photo by Cpl Alexander Mitchell.
PhotoLibrary_AllTiedUp_thumbnail180X102A reconnaissance man with the Maritime Raid Force, 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit, secures his parachute after an air insert into a reconnaissance and surveillance mission at a MEU field exercise aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif., May 12, 2016. The Maritime Raid Force provides a unique capability to the MEU commander and can respond to a number of mission requirements the MEU may respond to such as visit, board, search and seizure, reconnaissance and surveillance, and direct action raids. Marine Corps photo by LCpl Devan K. Gowans.
PhotoLibrary-Triple_Rope_River_Crossing_thumbnail_180x102A U.S. Marine with 1st Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, also known as "The Lava Dogs", conducts a triple rope river crossing drill at the Republic of Korea (ROK) Marine Corps Ranger Course as a part of the Korea Marine Exchange Program (KMEP) in South Korea, March 31, 2016. KMEP is a program designed to increase interoperability and camaraderie between U.S. Marines and ROK marines. The alliance between the United States and the Republic of Korea has grown ever stronger based upon the shared interests and common values of both nations. Photo by LCpl Sean M. Evans.
PhotoLibrary-Deck_Shoot_at_Night_thumbnail_180x102Marines with 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit conduct a deck shoot at night during their Western Pacific Deployment 16 aboard the USS New Orleans, April 1. More then 4,500 Marines and sailors from the Boxer ARG, 13th MEU team are currently transiting the Pacific Ocean toward the U.S. 5th fleet area of operations during a scheduled deployment. Photo by Sgt Hector de Jesus.
PhotoLibrary-Aircraft_Rescure_Fire_Fighting_thumbnail_180x102Marines with Aircraft Rescue Fire Fighting extinguish a fuel fire in a training pit March 24 during live burn training on Marine Corps Air Station Futenma, Okinawa, Japan. The training provided a real-life scenario to improve ARFF Marines' vital teamwork and communication skills. During the training, bulk fuel specialists dispensed fuel into the training pit, which was then ignited by an ARFF Marine. ARFF Marines entered the training area and used hand lines, also known as a fire hoses to control and extinguish the fire. The Marines are with ARFF, Headquarters and Headquarters Squadron, MCAS Futenma, Marine Corps Installations Pacific. Photo by Cpl Janessa Pon.
PhotoLibrary-Water_Hazard_thumbnail_180x102Marines assigned to Marine Air Control Group 28, conduct an underwater gear shed during a basic swim qualification course at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, North Carolina, March 16, 2016. Marines are required to demonstrate proficient combat water survival skills to complete the basic qualification. Photo by LCpl Jered T. Stone.
We Marines are truly blessed. We get to enjoy the sweet taste of freedom because we know its price.
Marine veteran John Chipura, survivor of the 1983 Beirut bombing, a NY Fireman, who wrote the above for the 225th Marine Corps birthday, 2000. He was later killed while responding to the terrorist attack, Sept. 11 at the World Trade Center, Tower 2.