CAMP HANSEN, OKINAWA, Japan --
As music played and food cooked on the grill, Marines and sailors with the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit came together during a barracks bash, May 6.
More than 100 Marines and sailors enjoyed music, food and several recreational activities.
“The bash was thrown for the Marines to give them a little time off from work to relax,” said Richard Palma, the family readiness officer with the 31st MEU. “It was a way of saying welcome back and good job to the Marines.”
The 31st MEU is often deployed for months at a time throughout the year, and recently returned from northern Japan where it conducted humanitarian aid and disaster relief missions during Operation Tomodachi.
“I had a lot of fun during the bash,” said Cpl. Alexandra Clements, an embark clerk with Combat Logistics Battalion 31, 31st MEU. “It was nice to do something like this and relax after being deployed for so long.”
One of the most popular attractions was the Velcro wall. To use it, Marines put on a Velcro suit, and jumped as high as they could to stick to it.
Some of the other popular attractions were an inflatable rock climbing wall, and an inflatable sparring pit.
Marines spent hours laughing, eating, and enjoying the equipment during the bash, and it also gave the Marines an opportunity to interact with each other in a relaxed setting.
“On ship, you spend most of your time with the same people, so everyone has their own groups,” said Clements. “This allowed us to meet more people, and I think it’s important that we get to do that.”
Overall everyone at the bash seemed to have a good time.
“I had a great time,” said Lance Cpl. Jonathan M. Cain, a chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear specialist with the 31st MEU. “There was good food, good music, and good company, and I hope we can do it again soon.”
The 31st MEU is the only continually forward-deployed MEU, and remains the nation’s force-in-readiness in the Asia-Pacific region.