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Marines Learn Survival Skills in Scottish Highlands

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Marines Learn Survival Skills in Scottish Highlands
04/30/2018 03:04 PM CDT

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U.S. Navy Lt. Cmdr. Jim Dimmick (left), a naval gunfire liaison officer with 4th Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company, Force Headquarters Group, and British Army Capt. Tom Murray (right), 148 Commando Battery, 29th Commando Royal Artillery, forage for bugs and insects during survival training, in Durness, Scotland, April 26, 2018. 4th ANGLICO is in Scotland to take part in Joint Warrior 18-1, an exercise that furthers their readiness and effectiveness in combined arms integration, small unit tactics and land navigation. This training aims at improving their capabilities and combat effectiveness and ensures they’re ready to fight tonight.

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Marines Learn Survival Skills in Scottish Highlands

By Marine Corps Cpl. Dallas Johnson

Marine Forces Reserve

DURNESS, Scotland, April 30, 2018 — One thing the general public knows, without a doubt, is that Marines are tough. They go in, complete their objective by any means necessary, and then get out as quickly as possible to prepare for the next mission. But what the general public doesn’t know is the vast amount of time and effort that goes into ensuring those Marines come home safe and successful. For the Marine Corps Reservists of 4th Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company, Force Headquarters Group, who are treated to the daily high heat and humidity of southern Florida, taking part in exercises outside their comfort zone is what makes them successful in whatever they do.

Dismissing the warm weather of home, this year 4th ANGLICO is in Durness, Scotland, from April 18-May 2 for their annual training. Here, for Joint Warrior 18-1, their plan is to spend their two weeks focusing and developing their ability to plan, coordinate and execute a multitude of live fire operations with supporting partner nations.

Rare Opportunity

Aside from that overall objective, the Marines were given the chance to take part in what many in the Marine Corps community can only dream of — survival training. Against the backdrop of the Scottish Highlands, with its cold, rainy and windy landscape and mountainous terrain, survival can depend on the way a Marine conducts his or her tasks, techniques and procedures. This training offered a glimpse into what it would take to adapt to operations in an environment that is both physically and mentally taxing.

“The Marines are going to learn how to build fires, forage for food and prioritize work needs in order to not just survive but to get rescued,” said Marine Corps Maj. Graham Perry, the officer in charge of 4th ANGLICO, FHG. “We typically find ourselves in austere conditions and environments. A lot of times in the past, we’ve been in the desert. As we start to pivot to other regions of the world, this particular survival training will help the Marines if they find themselves operating in these types of areas. It’s going to definitely add some tricks up their sleeve,” he said.

During the eight-hour wilderness training course, which started the night before when the Marines were instructed to not eat anything after dinner, 4th ANGLICO developed the necessary skills and procedures required to stay alive in a potentially dangerous situation. This included the basic components of survival; like prioritizing needs, hands-on training with building shelters, how to properly make clean water and learning to catch and clean game — as well as what to do with every portion of it.

Mental Toughness, Teamwork

“The purpose of all this that I wanted to get across to the Marines was the basic skills needed on how to survive, whether that be in a hostile environment or being in an area they attacked and have to evade,” said British Army Staff Sgt. Steven Kelly, a survival instructor with 29th Commando Regiment, Artillery Battery. “If this happens in real life, it’s going to be a lot harder. Can they get through it? That’s where the mental toughness comes in. The most important thing, though, that I want 4th ANGLICO to take away is the teamwork, it’s what it all is. Here, it’s about survival and working as a team. Working with ANGLICO has been amazing. And teaching these Marines what to do has been great.”

For an ANGLICO Marine who happens to land in this seemingly impossible, stressful situation, the simple act of working as a team and the process of building a fire can warm a unit well enough to get an objective completed. Instructors taught the Marines that the faster and harder they work, the warmer they get. And, in the case of making clean water and fire and building a suitable shelter, the resulting hard work pays dividends in the long run.

As the day concluded, Kelly took it upon himself to teach the Marines some techniques he learned during his time at survival, evasion, resistance, and escape school. This included how to properly read time and direction from the sun and several different ways to escape from extra wide zip-tie handcuffs.

An ANGLICO unit’s primary mission is to provide direct support to various forces working within the Marine Corps’ battlespace, and to conduct the coordination required in order for their commanders to access close air support, artillery, rockets and naval gunfire.

With the specific cold-weather survival training learned during Joint Warrior 18, 4th ANGLICO will continue their primary mission while remaining in a constant state of readiness for their next successful mission, regardless of clime and place.

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180426-M-WQ182-005.JPG U.S. Navy Lt. Cmdr. Jim Dimmick (left), a naval gunfire liaison officer with 4th Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company, Force Headquarters Group, and British Army Capt. Tom Murray (right), 148 Commando Battery, 29th Commando Royal Artillery, forage for bugs and insects during survival training, in Durness, Scotland, April 26, 2018. 4th ANGLICO is in Scotland to take part in Joint Warrior 18-1, an exercise that furthers their readiness and effectiveness in combined arms integration, small unit tactics and land navigation. This training aims at improving their capabilities and combat effectiveness and ensures they’re ready to fight tonight.
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180426-M-WQ182-005.JPG U.S. Navy Lt. Cmdr. Jim Dimmick (left), a naval gunfire liaison officer with 4th Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company, Force Headquarters Group, and British Army Capt. Tom Murray (right), 148 Commando Battery, 29th Commando Royal Artillery, forage for bugs and insects during survival training, in Durness, Scotland, April 26, 2018. 4th ANGLICO is in Scotland to take part in Joint Warrior 18-1, an exercise that furthers their readiness and effectiveness in combined arms integration, small unit tactics and land navigation. This training aims at improving their capabilities and combat effectiveness and ensures they’re ready to fight tonight.
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U.S. Department of Defense Lead Photos Update

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Capas Construction
04/21/2018 07:00 PM CDT

Marine Corps Cpl. Matthew Moore saws metal during a construction project at a school in Capas, Philippines, April 22, 2018, as part of Balikatan, an annual U.S.-Philippines exercise. Marine Corps photo by Sgt. Matthew J. Bragg

Department of Defense (DoD)

Airman Fulfills Long-Held Dream of Military Service

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Airman Fulfills Long-Held Dream of Military Service
04/30/2018 01:54 PM CDT

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Air Force Airman 1st Class Rosa Vittori, a personnel specialist with the Texas Air National Guard’s 149th Fighter Wing, processes paperwork for Zach Pratka, a member of the wing’s student flight at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas, April 28, 2018. Texas Air National Guard photo by Airman 1st Class Katie Schultz

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Airman Fulfills Long-Held Dream of Military Service

By Air Force Airman 1st Class Katie Schultz

149th Fighter Wing

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas, April 30, 2018 — After watching her school’s ROTC drill team perform during her freshman year of high school, Rosa Vittori decided she would join the Air Force.

Her dream was cut short, however, when she became pregnant at age 15.

“It was hard being pregnant in high school, and I just wanted to get out of there,” said Vittori, now an airman first class and a personnel specialist with the Texas Air National Guard’s 149th Fighter Wing here. “I dropped out of ROTC, took senior classes, and finished in three years. After graduating, I felt like I couldn’t go join the Air Force because I had a young kid.”

Many years and two more children later, Vittori was set in a routine of working days as an office manager, going to night school and raising her daughters when a thought occurred to her.

“There came a point where I asked myself, ‘What are you doing with your life? What do you have to show for yourself?’” she said. “My sister-in-law told me about the Guard and said it might be a good option for me so I wouldn’t have to move my kids all around, but I could still serve.”

Testing

After hearing that advice, Vittori contacted a recruiter at the 149th Fighter Wing then took the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery, an aptitude test used to determine enlistment qualification for military service. Since it had been so many years since Vittori had seen the material being tested, she did not pass.

“After I failed, I thought maybe it wasn’t meant to be,” she said. “It didn’t happen after high school, and it’s not happening now. I kind of got down about that, but I thought ‘Let’s just go ahead and do it again.’”

While balancing work and motherhood, she took the ASVAB again and passed, enlisting into the wing in 2016. She then completed her training as a personnel specialist and earned a technician position at the wing shortly thereafter.

“Serving in the Guard has given me so many more opportunities than I thought possible,” Vittori said. “I also feel like I’m setting a good example for my kids. My youngest and my middle one talk about joining the Air Force now, and honestly that’s the main goal — to be a good role model for them. I want my kids to remember me for going after my dreams even though I had a hard start. That’s what I want to show them.”

Trying to be that positive role model is not always easy, she said.

“When I was at tech school, I missed two of my daughters’ birthdays,” Vittori said. “I also missed my oldest daughter’s cheerleading competitions, which was hard because we have a routine where I do her make-up and get her ready. But with me gone, she had to have other moms help her, so it was tough to know that she was alone on important days.”

‘It Gets Better’

According to Airman 1st Class Rubie Rodriguez, a close friend of Vittori and an aviation resource management specialist with the wing, challenges don’t keep her friend from her goals.

“She’s open-minded and has a positive outlook, even when she’s faced with obstacles,” Rodriguez said. “We always say, ‘It gets better.’ And whenever anyone else is going through a hard time, she will drop everything at a moment’s notice to be there whether you just need to vent or need an open ear. She’s an amazing friend and I’m happy to have her.”

Rodriguez said she periodically checks in on Vittori.

“Sometimes I call her in the morning as she’s going into work, either getting coffee or walking out the door, to see how she’s doing,” she said. “We keep each other accountable, and she can always count on her second family at the Guard.”

And even though it took her longer to start her military career, Vittori said she is glad she persevered and didn’t let fear of failure hold her back. She encourages others to do the same.

“I feel like a lot of people get caught up in the what-ifs and what could go wrong and they never think of what could go right,” she said. “You just have to do it. If you want to do something, you have to do it without thinking. Don’t think about the things you’re going to miss, because sacrifices have to be made in order to reach your dreams. But once you reach that dream, it brings out another side you never knew was there, and it’s worth it.”

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149th Fighter Wing

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180428-Z-IR597-009T.JPG Air Force Airman 1st Class Rosa Vittori, a personnel specialist with the Texas Air National Guard’s 149th Fighter Wing, processes paperwork for Zach Pratka, a member of the wing’s student flight at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas, April 28, 2018. Texas Air National Guard photo by Airman 1st Class Katie Schultz
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Department of Defense (DoD)

FEMA EMI News Update – Training Bulletin 1399 & Training Opportunity 1401 – Emergenc y Management Training Community of Practice & MEPP Series Training Opportunity FY2019

1399 – Training Bulletin – Emergency Management Training Community of Practice & 1401 – Training Opportunity – MEPP Series Training Opportun
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Website Update

FEMA Emergency Management Institute

Emergency Management Training Community of Practice
Master Exercise Practitioner Program (MEPP) Series

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Emmitsburg, MD — You are subscribed to EMI News for FEMA. The following information has recently been updated, and is now available on http://training.fema.gov/EMI/

1399 – Training Bulletin – Emergency Management Training Community of Practice

Emergency Management Training Community of Practice:

The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Emergency Management Institute (EMI) announces the establishment of the Emergency Management Training Community of Practice as a LinkedIn Group.
This group will be moderated by the Emergency Management Institute.

Community of Practice Description:

This Community of Practice supports Emergency Management training managers and trainers by providing an online forum to share questions, ideas and experiences in their role in building national preparedness and resilience. Dialogue amongst peers is one of the practices that make us successful!

To Join:

To join the Emergency Management Training Community of Practice you must have a LinkedIn account.

The Community of Practice is located at https://www.linkedin.com/groups/8660306. You may enter a request to join the group at this website. When received, your request will be reviewed by the Community of Practice Moderator and you will be notified when approved to join the group.

EMI Point of Contact:

For additional information, contact the Community of Practice Moderator, Jeff Fancher, at (301) 447-1184 or by email at jeffery.fancher@fema.dhs.gov.

Read more in Training Bulletin 1399.

1401 – Training Opportunity – MEPP Series Training Opportunity FY2019

Course: Master Exercise Practitioner Program (MEPP) Series

Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 Course Dates:

MEPP Series #47

  • E132 October 15-18, 2018
  • E133 February 11-14, 2019
  • K0136 TBD in FY 2020

MEPP Series #48

  • E132 November 5-8. 2018
  • E133 March 4-8, 2019
  • K0136 TBD in FY20

Course Description:

The Master Exercise Practitioner Program (MEPP) is a series of two resident courses (E0132, E0133) focusing on advanced program management, exercise design and evaluation practices in each phase of the Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP). MEPP candidates work in a collaborative environment to discuss best practices and exercise challenges. Candidates will be required to complete a capstone exercise within one year of completing the E0133 course. This exercise should be on their agency/jurisdictions overall Training and Exercise Plan.

Read More in Training Opportunity 1401.

Emergency Management Institute Mission

To support the Department of Homeland Security and FEMA’s goals by improving the competencies of the U.S. officials in Emergency Management at all levels of government to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate the potential effects of all types of disasters and emergencies on the American people. Read more…

U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency

Emergency Management Institute
16825 S. Seton Ave., Emmitsburg, MD 21727

Switchboard: (301) 447-1000

Office of Admissions:
(301) 447-1035 Fax: (301) 447-1658
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FEMA Independent Study Program Office:
(301) 447-1200 Fax: (301)447-1201

Disaster Assistance Logo - DisasterAssistance.gov ACCESS TO DISASTER HELP AND RESOURCES
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(800) 621-FEMA / TTY (800) 462-7585

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U.S. Department of Defense Lead Photos Update

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Coil Spoiler
04/18/2018 07:00 PM CDT

Marines break through concertina wire during the Sapper Squad Competition at Camp Lejeune, N.C., April 19, 2018. The Marines are assigned to the 1st Combat Engineer Battalion. Marine Corps photo by Pfc. Tyler M. Solak