RICHMOND, Va. — About 2,200 Marines and sailors are conducting nearly two weeks of training around Virginia.

The Camp Lejeune, N.C.-based 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit is training at Fort Pickett in Blackstone. But officials say they also will perform smaller group exercises at other locations.

Military officials say training in towns can give the unit experience dealing with urban areas.

The unit is preparing for a scheduled spring deployment overseas aboard several Navy amphibious ships. The Virginia work-up is part of a 26-week training program.

Computer issues cited in failed rescue attemptGLOUCESTER, Mass. — A Coast Guard official says computer problems may have delayed efforts to rescue the fishing vessel Patriot, which went down with two crew members on board.

Capt. Gail Kulisch tells The Gloucester Daily Times that delays in the Coast Guard’s response to the Jan. 3 emergency occurred because the distress signal came in an unorthodox manner, and the key source of information was "a fisherman’s wife."

Kulisch, Sector Boston commander, said Coast Guardpersonnel made "several" unsuccessful attempts to use a computerized vessel monitoring system to pinpoint the last radio-beamed location of the 54-foot boat but did not have proper access codes.

The Patriot’s captain, 36-year-old Matteo Russo, and his 58-year-old father-in-law, John Orlando, died.

From staff and wire reports

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