Events

October 4, 2012

Yuma Harrier squadron celebrates tradition at Warrior’s Night

Tags:
Story and photos by Cpl. Sean Dennison
Desert Warrior Staff
WarriorNight1
Jim Campbell, center, a former Marine Raider and the guest of honor during Marine Attack Squadron 513’s Warrior Night, stands with gifts given to him by Sgt. Maj. Raquel Painter, left, the VMA-513 sergeant major, and Lt. Col. Samuel Smith, the VMA-513 commanding officer, Sept. 27. The squadron used the Warrior Night as a way to celebrate Corps traditions and solder their camaraderie. While at the banquet, Campbell regaled the Flying Nightmares with stories from his time as a Marine during World War II.

Keeping Corps ethos alive and well, a Yuma-based AV-8B Harrier squadron hosted their own Warrior’s Night at the air station’s Ramada Field, Sept. 27.

Marine Attack Squadron 513 Marines and sailors came together for a day of fun that challenged participants physically, as well as their notions of what Corps traditions are all about.

The history of Warrior’s Night is a bit blurry; one theory claims Viking clans from Scandinavia would gather after a raid or trading mission to celebrate their success and remember those who fell in battle. This ethos was naturally adopted by the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps and eventually came to be called Mess Nights, more formal versions of Warrior’s Night.

The Flying Nightmares kicked off the event with an obstacle course run between the sections. Marines worked together to navigate the obstacles and encouraged each other, some a bit more colorfully than others.

Marines with Marine Attack Squadron 513 traverse the obstacle course at Ramada Field during the squadron’s Warrior’s Night, Sept. 27. The Flying Nightmares kicked off the event with an obstacle course run between the sections. Marines worked together to navigate the obstacles and encouraged each other, some a bit more colorfully than others.

“We’re just having some friendly competition between Marines to see which team finishes strongest,” said Sgt. Maj. Raquel Painter, the VMA-513 sergeant major. “We wanted to get the squadron together and bring them in as a cohesive unit.”

After the course, the Marines filed down to the tent where the evening’s celebration took place. Marines enjoyed some downtime until it was time to file in and take their place at the tables.

The scene had the same atmosphere of a deeply personal gathering before sending one of their own away, and in a way it was.

VMA-513 is slated for deactivation sometime next year. As the Corps moves along to create new stories, 513’s Warrior Night allowed the Nightmares to tell their own.

“Most of the Marines are going to other squadrons, so we wanted to get one more event in,” said Painter.

Harrier maintainers have some of the biggest responsibilities on station, often working more than half-day shifts to prep the station’s premier aircraft. Days such as the squadron’s Warrior Night are rare, but rewarding.

The reward came in the form of the squadron’s guest of honor during the Warrior Night, Jim Campbell, a former Marine Raider who fought in World War II.

While at the banquet, Campbell regaled the Flying Nightmares with stories from his time as a Marine, a few of which included him escaping death at the hands of the Japanese.

He also gave his own input about today’s Marines to the squadron.

“We’ve got a bunch of strong, intelligent, good-looking men here,” Campbell said.

“Sir, you are the reason men and women here are in the Corps, for the stories and history you embody,” Smith said, before presenting Campbell with a gift from the squadron: his very own swagger stick.

VMA-513 is slated to deploy with a Marine Expeditionary Unit later this year, the final adventure of one of the Corps most decorated aviation units.

Marines with Marine Attack Squadron 513 toast and drink during the squadron’s Warrior’s Night outside Ramada Field, Sept. 27. VMA-513 is slated for deactivation sometime next year. As the Corps moves along to create new stories, 513’s Warrior Night allowed the Nightmares to tell their own. “Most of the Marines are going to other squadrons, so we wanted to get one more event in,” said Sgt. Maj. Raquel Painter, the squadron sergeant major.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
sterling-yuma

Sterling Global Operations completes U.S. Navy project to clear munitions, firing range and target debris from Arizona Marine Corps Air Station range

Sterling Global Operations, Inc., in a two-year project for the U.S. Navy, removed or recycled some 5.9 million pounds of munitions, firing range and target debris from Marine Corps Air Station at Yuma, Ariz. Sterling Global re...
 
 

US Army, Raytheon achieve first inflight lethal intercept of low quadrant elevation rocket

YUMA PROVING GROUND, Ariz. – Raytheon successfully intercepted and destroyed a low quadrant elevation 107mm rocket as part of the second series of guided test vehicle flight tests of the Accelerated Improved Intercept Initiative program. The intercept is a major test milestone before the U.S. Army live-fire engagements begin in September. “Beginning only 18 months...
 
 

Raytheon, U.S. Army complete first AI3 guided flight test series

Raytheon and the U.S. Army successfully completed the first guided test vehicle flight series of the Accelerated Improved Intercept Initiative program at Yuma Proving Ground, Aris. The series consisted of two flight tests against different target profiles. In each case after launch, the interceptor initially guided on in-flight radio frequency datalink updates from the fire...
 

 

New Navy vessel named after Yuma

The U.S. Navy has decided to name one of their newest Joint High-Speed Vessels after the city of Yuma, Ariz., forming an even deeper bond between the local community and our military. Political officials from the state of Arizona and the city of Yuma were informed of the decision by the Honorable Ray Mabus, Secretary...
 
 
DoD

Joint Strike Fighter on track, costs coming down, Kendall says

Indications are that the F-35 joint strike fighter program — the most expensive aviation program in Defense Department history — is on track, the undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics told a Senate panel June 19. Testifying before the Senate Appropriations Committee’s defense subcommittee this morning, Frank Kendall said the F-35 will be...
 
 
DoD
WEBarmy-jltv2

Joint Light Tactical Vehicle ‘closes capability gap,’ Army says

While the Humvee has served the Army well for some 25 years, there’s a “capability gap” in what it can do for warfighters on a 21st-century battlefield, said the Soldier responsible for overseeing its replacem...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin