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U.S. Marines disembark the USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) after returning from their Spring Patrol of the Asia-Pacific region, April 6, 2017. As the Marine Corps’ only continuously forward deployed unit, the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit is prepared to respond to a wide range of military operations, from humanitarian assistance missions to limited combat operations, at a moment’s notice. As a balanced air-ground-logistics team, the 31st MEU is ready to respond throughout the Asia-Pacific region. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Gunnery Sergeant Ernest V. Hagewood)

Photo by Gunnery Sergeant Ernest V. Hagewood

31st MEU & PHIBRON 11 Complete Spring Patrol

22 Mar 2017 | 1st Lt. Anthony Ramos 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit

CAMP HANSEN, OKINAWA, Japan, (Apr. 6, 2017) – The 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit and Amphibious Squadron 11, embarked aboard ships of the Bonhomme Richard Expeditionary Strike Group, completed their Spring Deployment 2017, returning to White Beach Naval Base, Okinawa, Japan, April 6. 

 The 31st MEU, which departed Mar. 8, was embarked aboard USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6), USS Green Bay (LPD 20), and USS Ashland (LSD 48).

“The 31st MEU’s 2017 spring deployment was extremely successful,” Said Col. Tye Wallace, commanding officer of the 31st MEU. “We had a great time during the patrol integrating with our naval partners. We were able to hone our skills as an afloat, amphibious crisis response force. Even though this patrol was relatively short, it allowed us to further strengthen the bonds of camaraderie between PHIBRON 11 and the MEU.”

The deployment began with elements of the MEU aboard USS Green Bay deploying in early February to participate in Cobra Gold 17 in Thailand. The 31st MEU and PHIBRON 11 then completed Amphibious Integration Training and Certification Exercise from Mar. 9-29.

“We’ve accomplished so much in the short six weeks out at sea and from it have built a stronger, more adept fighting force,” said Capt. George Doyon, Commander, Amphibious Squadron 11. “Our commitment to regular training and joint operations between the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps ensures our Sailors and Marines are prepared for any contingency.”

Spring Deployment 2017 was a regularly scheduled deployment which focused on training, amphibious integration and interoperability of forces. 

 The 31st MEU and PHIBRON 11, embarked on the amphibious ships of the Expeditionary Strike Group 7, have the capability to respond to crisis at a moment’s notice. The cohesion between this Blue/Green team is essential to mission success and interoperability. 

 The 31st MEU is the Marine Corps’ only continuously forward-deployed MEU – a combined-arms, sea-based Marine Air-Ground Task Force – with a compliment of air-ground-logistics assets to sustain itself from the sea for the rapid accomplishment of any mission or to pave the way for follow-on forces.

31st Marine Expeditionary Unit