Leadership Albany Class Experiences Marine Corps Training During Daylong Visit

Marti Gatlin

Monday, April 20th, 2015

They donned black helmets with face shields, climbed into the back of an olive green light armored vehicle, two positioning themselves in the vehicle commander’s and gunner’s seats. With the engine rumbling, LAV driver, Roger Spence, turned onto Marine Depot Maintenance Command/Production Plant Albany’s test track.

He sped along at about 55 mph, circling twice with the unlikely passengers, who were members of Leadership Albany Class of 2015.

Upon exiting the LAV, the riders cheered loudly, but their rides weren’t over. They then boarded an assault amphibious vehicle, driven by Robert Terry, for more maneuvers around the track.

More than 20 class members participated in daylong activities aboard Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany, April 9. Representing various local businesses in Albany, the group learned about MCLB Albany and its tenant commands’ missions and roles in the Marine Corps. 

During their visit here, the class received presentations about the Marine Corps, MCLB Albany and Marine Corps Logistics Command and toured Marine Depot Maintenance Command/Production Plant Albany as well as the Distribution Management Center. The men and women also fired 9 mm pistols at the Pistol Range, engaged in Marine Corps Martial Arts Program training as well as pugil stick training, which simulates fighting with M16 rifles and bayonets.

Tammy McCrary, president of CTSI Company, described the technology and equipment here as amazing. 

“The main thing is to understand what the Marine Corps Logistics Base not only does out here in Albany, but the commitment they make to the community, ” McCrary said. “I think the community as a whole should have this opportunity, not just Leadership Albany, because we learned so much about the services that you all provide not only to the military but to our community. 

“I have lived here my whole life and I did not even realize this test track was here and I did not know we refurbished the equipment when it came in,” she added.

Eddie Zedaker with TTL Inc. tested his abilities against his Marine opponent during pugil stick training. 

“The hardest part was sizing up my opponent and knowing he’s a trained warrior,” Zedaker said. “It was slippery holding on and getting a tight grip.

“I’m very proud of our community and what we’re able to contribute to our Marines,” he continued, noting he learned about the output of equipment and what it takes to get everything organized and out to the Marines.

Leadership Albany Class of 2011 alumni member Brenda Shy, who helped set up the activities here, talked about what she hoped the current class would learn from their visit to the base.

“I hope their eyes will be opened to the impact we have in Albany, Georgia, and how our mission impacts Marines around the globe,” said the director, Wholesale Inventory Control Point, Planning Division, Weapon Systems Management Center.  

Leadership Albany is a program filled with activities and hands-on experiences related to community issues and leadership skills, according to the organization’s website, http://la.clubexpress.com/content.aspx?page_id=22&club_id=656929&module_id=123791.