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Marines run in formation during a battalion run aboard Marine Corps Base Quantico on Aug. 29, 2013. Col. Robin Gallant, the commanding officer of Headquarters and Service Battalion, led the formation to motivate the Marines before giving a safety brief prior to the Labor Day weekend.

Photo by Lance Cpl. Cuong Le

Battlion run highlights holiday safety

30 Aug 2013 | Lance Cpl. Cuong Le

The sound of cadence echoed through Marine Corp Base Quantico on Aug. 29, 2013, as Headquarters and Service Battalion dashed through the base.

A heart-pounding and sweat-inducing run was Col. Robin Gallant’s way of motivating the Marines of Headquarters and Service Battalion.

“Some Marines work behind a desk or in a vehicle all day, and that’s not what some of them might have signed up for, so this is a good opportunity for the Marines to be Marines,” said Gallant.

It is always good to have time to relax, but even when relax it is important to be aware of one’s surroundings.

“Every holiday there are crazy drivers on 95 and the briefs remind us to always be aware of our surroundings,” said Lance Cpl. Cedric Rin, Headquarters Company. H&S Bn

Gallant had to find a way to ensure that the Marines had a safe liberty, and inspire and motivate them.

“Nothing is more motivating than hundreds of Marines forming up in the dark for physical training,” Capt. Joe Hardin, commanding officer, HQ Co.

As the Marines ran throughout the base they called cadences and it was not long before it became a full-on competition to see which unit could be louder. When the Marines ran under the bridge from the Marine Corps University their voices echoed and vibrated the very air they breathed.

“I was very excited at the beginning of the run and, by the end of the run, I felt like I could go for another three miles,” said Lance Cpl. Dominic Clay, Training and Education Co., H&S Bn. “I found the whole event to be very motivating.”

When the Marines finished their run, the commanding officer gave some last words of advice and her three rules: one, not to embarrass the name on their left pocket; two, not to embarrass the name on their right pocket; and three, to take care of each other.

“This run was a great opportunity to motivate the Marines and get a safety message across,” said Gallant.


Combat Correspondent:  cuong.le@usmc.mil
Marine Corps Base Quantico