For a day, Marine wives learn what it’s like to be on the other side of the Corps
MARINE CORPS AIR STATION FUTENMA, Okinawa — The drill instructor raced up and down the formation, stopping only to yell at the top of his lungs just inches from their faces. One looked so taken aback that the sergeant major had to come over to make sure she was all right.
This scene wasn’t on the hallowed grounds of Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, S.C., with a group of recruits.
Rather, these were spouses getting a close-up view of what it’s like to be a Marine, during "Jane Wayne Day" on Friday at Futenma.
From calling cadence during a run to piloting a helicopter and firing a machine gun on simulators to trying on night-vision goggles, the 50 "Janes" got a little taste of their husbands’ jobs.
"Some things they are learning I hope they never have to use, like defending themselves in a knife fight," said Renee Lilley, family readiness officer for Marine Wing Headquarters Squadron 1, as she watched some of the women use rubber batons during a martial arts demonstration.
However, it was the "big guns" at the Indoor Simulated Marksmanship Trainer that seemed to be the most popular activity of the day.
"It was really cool to shoot such huge weapons. I shoot pistols with my father, and I never get the opportunity to shoot multiple-round weapons," said Kate Steele after firing a weapon that was nearly as long as she is tall. "It has been a really great day."
"This is a way for us to show the spouses that we really appreciate what they do," said Lt. Col. Raul Lianez, commanding officer of the squadron. "They have a job that is just as trying."