MARINE CORPS LOGISTICS BASE ALBANY --
Land navigation, High Intensity Tactical Training, Aquatics Maximum Power Intense Training and a 6-mile hike tested the stamina of Marine Corps Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps cadets from Plaquemine High School, Plaquemine, Louisiana, June 6-10.
The cadets, who rode in a school bus nearly 500 miles, participated in a Cadet Leadership Camp held aboard Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany, for the first time.
Upon arrival, they were greeted by Col. James C. Carroll III, commanding officer, MCLB Albany, who encouraged them to take advantage of the training scheduled; to look out for each other and work together as a team.
Continuing to build their confidence and leadership skills, the cadets accepted the mental and physical challenge of rappelling down a 50-foot tower.
Sergeant Maj. Rickey Justice, MJROTC instructor, Plaquemine High School, said rappelling down the tower helped build the cadets’ confidence in not only themselves but also the ropes and safety harness they were using.
He compared the cadets’ disposition before and after they “faced their fear” of the rappelling tower.
“Once (they) walked up those stairs and (took) that long climb, hooked up to the gear and (took) that leap of faith, (when) they came down (the tower), you can see a 100 percent change in their whole demeanor,” Justice said.
Overall, the training was worth the 9-hour drive from Louisiana to Southwest Georgia, he admitted.
“This is our first year coming out here so we decided to come out and to see what kind of support and training they could provide for us,” Justice added. “(The training) has been tremendous.”
Cadet Lt. Col. Shawn Carline, battalion commander, MJROTC, said he was excited once he saw that rappelling was on the schedule.
“I am an adrenalin junky and I like heights,” Carline said. “I think (the rappelling tower) definitely instilled some more courage in me, you know, kind of faced my fears.”
He expressed interest in joining the Marine Corps and becoming an infantryman after he graduates high school.
The cadets’ training ended June 10 with a surprise visit from Maj. Gen. Craig C. Crenshaw, commanding general, Marine Corps Logistics Command, just before their 6-mile hike.