MARINE CORPS AIR STATION IWAKUNI, Japan --
Marine Corps spouses participated in the Headquarters and Headquarters Squadron Jane Wayne Day aboard Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan, May 31, 2014.
Spouses tested their mental and physical strength on various Marine Corps training exercises, and they witnessed demonstration put on by Aircraft Rescue Fire Fighting and Provost Marshal’s Office K-9 Unit.
Katherine A. West, family readiness officer for H&HS, not only coordinated the event, but she also participated in it with her fellow spouses.
“Jane Wayne Day is an opportunity for spouses of our service members to be able to experience more of the Marine Corps’ culture and more about what our Marines do every day,” said West. “It gives them an alternate perspective to what they know as the Marine Corps.”
Sgt. Maj. Coleman R. Kinzer and Staff Sgt. Courtney R. Achterberg, former drill instructors, volunteered their time to contribute to the event and play their prior stone-faced role.
Kinzer and Achterberg taught the spouses close order drill and gave them an example of what recruit training discipline was like for their husbands.
Spouses received a brief on the M4 carbine and M240B medium machine gun at the Indoor Small-Arms Range aboard station and then had the chance to fire them.
After putting rounds down range, participants donned Mission-Oriented Protective Posture gear and exposed themselves to 0-Chlorobenzalmalononitrile gas, also known as CS Gas. Spouses, who were brave enough, broke the seal of their mask to get the full gas chamber experience.
Ignoring the burning eyes and running noses from the gas chamber, a modified Combat Fitness Test challenged the spouses’ will to push forward.
To conclude the day’s events, spouses competed in a Pugil Stick competition to add a hard fought day into their memories.
For Cindy Robertson, a Jayne Wayne Day participant, the event wasn’t just physically and mentally challenging, but it allowed her an in-depth view of what her husband, and all Marines, went through to earn the title.
“It gives us a very small insight to what our spouses truly went through,” said Robertson. “It gives me a whole new level of respect for every Marine that has gone through recruit training.”
The day tested multiple aspects of each spouse’s body and mind. A few ice packs and bandages later, the spouses got a closer look and feel of what it’s like to be a Marine; if only for a day.