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Kirkland Marine Leads Reconn Team in Training With Singaporean Dive Unit

Staff Sgt. King Ritchie led his team in exchanging tactics, techniques and procedures with highly trained Singaporean divers during the exercise in Hawaii last week.

 

Editor's Note: The following story is from the Defense Video and Imagery Distribution System.

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By LANCE CPL. SUZANNA LAPI

MARINE CORPS BASE HAWAII, Hawaii - Reconnaissance Marines from 3rd Reconnaissance Battalion, based in Okinawa, Japan, dove in and took flight with members of the Singapore Armed Forces Naval Diving Unit during Exercise Sandfisher 2013, a bilateral training exercise held at Marine Corps Base Hawaii from Jan. 7 to 18.

According to the recon leadership, the purpose of the operation was to build their military partnership by strengthening both nations’ tactics in amphibious procedures and combat diving. Unit members performed surface swims, small craft maneuvers, and special purpose insertion and extraction rigging.

Every year, the Singaporean divers and recon Marines train together for three weeks. Over the past eight years, they have trained in both Singapore and Hawaii.

Staff Sgt. King Ritchie, a reconnaissance team leader with 3rd Recon Battalion and a native of Kirkland, said they exchanged tactics, techniques and procedures with the highly trained Singaporean divers.

The purpose of the exercise was to strengthen tactics in amphibious procedures and combat diving for both nations while building their military partnership. Unit members performed surface swims, small craft maneuvers, and special purpose insertion and extraction rigging.

Ritchie said there were risks anytime they worked in the water, including dive related accidents and injuries, and challenges brought on by hazardous marine life like sharks and coral. Safety personnel were present with emergency equipment and divers were instructed to avoid sea life.

“We take every precaution we can to mitigate injuries,” he said.

Read more about the exercise here: http://www.dvidshub.net/news/100823/recon-marines-singaporean-special-forces-conduct-training-hawaii#.UP6snGfQLwU#ixzz2IiYhnjdo

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The Defense Video and Imagery Distribution System is the media relations hub of the US military.

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