MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. --
It’s the early morning hours and hundreds of Marines gather on the field preparing for their daily dose of motivation.
Junior Marines with Combat Logistics Regiment 17, 1st Marine Logistics Group, ran a 3-mile course throughout mainside here, Oct. 18.
More than 200 lance corporals and below, still half asleep, slowly made their way to the dark field to join their respective companies for formation. Finally, the lights came on to reveal a thick layer of fog that covered the area.
Then all of a sudden, “Good morning, Marines.” Sgt. Maj. Robert E. Ledferd, CLR-17 sergeant major, was on deck. He was greeted with a booming “GOOD MORNING, SERGEANT MAJOR!” And the run began.
The purpose of the “motivation” run was to build camaraderie between the Marines and to give some of the junior leaders a chance to take charge.
During the run, the Marines took turns calling cadence, which could be heard all around as they made their way through the 14 Area.
“Let’s go, keep it up Marines,” shouted some of the runners. “We’re doing great, let’s finish this thing.”
Towards the end of the run as the massive formation ventured closer to the end, each person dug deep into whatever energy they had left to finish out strong.
After they formed up, they received the command to form a school circle around the sergeant major.
“How are we feeling,” asked Ledferd. “Good, sergeant major,” they all responded.
Ledferd expressed how proud he was of the Marines’ performance.
“They all did great out there,” said Ledferd. “The reason there were no [noncommissioned officers] in this run is because I wanted the lance corporals to take over.”
He also added that they are the future leaders and they did an outstanding job of taking charge and doing what they had to do.
Ledferd thanked them for their hard work and for representing the Marine Corps well on and off duty, and for reducing safety mishaps through Operational Risk Management.
“You all have been practicing good ORM,” he said. “I really appreciate it.”
At the end of the run, the Marines and the sergeant major engaged in a motivating chant shouting, “TURN UP THE HEAT!”