MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. -- “Double-time!” yells the sergeant standing in front of the company. “Marine Corps!” erupts from the entire company in an ominous roar.
Dawn breaks over the horizon as the regiment begins to run off the 13 Area football field in formation, shouting motivation from the top of their lungs. The regimental sergeant major leads the group through the fresh-dewed grass, beginning the run.
Noncommissioned officers with Combat Logistics Regiment 17, 1st Marine Logistics Group, participated in an NCO regimental run here, Sept. 16. The run was held to build camaraderie and teamwork among the NCOs.
The motivation was palpable as the regiment came thundering down the road, screaming at the top of their lungs.
“These runs are not specifically about the [physical training]; they’re about the camaraderie,” said Sgt. Maj. Ledferd, regimental sergeant major, CLR-17, 1st MLG. “Whether you like it or not, we’re all a part of the same family. We are all one team, one fight.”
Having almost all of the NCOs present for the run presented the opportunity for Ledferd to address everyone at the same time.
Ledferd, from Louisville Kent., said he also organized the run to communicate his expectations of the Marines as leaders.
The regiment is a working body, with his NCOs as the backbone holding it all together, Ledferd said. He emphasized his wishes to increase the regiment’s communication throughout this “body.”
The body is useless if the officers, “the brain,” are not able to pass information through the backbone to their junior Marines, as he referred to them as the “arms and limbs,” explained Ledferd.
During the run, each company competed amongst each other for motivation.
“Motivation is contagious. During the run we competed on which company was the loudest while singing cadence,” said Sgt. Able Graciano, platoon leader, Supply Platoon, Headquarters Company, CLR-17, 1st MLG.
The event also gave the chance for NCOs to practice calling cadence. Many Marines don’t have the luxury to show motivation during unit PT sessions, said Sgt. Mihai V. Psederski, comptroller, G-8, HQ Company, CLR-17, 1st MLG.
“The run went great,” said Ledferd after dismissing the regiment. He added that he plans to do the same run with his junior Marines, to get one-on-one time with them. The junior Marine regimental run is scheduled for Oct. 18 at 6:30 a.m. beginning at the Paige Field track.