U.S. Marines and U.S. Navy Sailors with the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) are slated to depart North Carolina and begin their scheduled eight-month deployment with the Bataan Amphibious Ready Group (ARG).
Approximately 2,400 Marines and Sailors with the MEU will depart the Camp Lejeune, N.C., area over the next week to deploy to the U.S. 5th and 6th Fleet areas of responsibility with the Bataan ARG. The MEU will serve as a sea-based, expeditionary crisis response force capable of conducting amphibious missions across the full range of military operations.
Media are invited to attend the departure of approximately 300 Marines and Sailors from Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune on Feb. 7. Media interested in covering the Feb. 7 departure from Camp Lejeune must RSVP to 1st Lt. Andrew Bolla at firstname.lastname@example.org or 910-451-9632 by 4 p.m. Feb. 6. Members of the media who have RSVP’d will meet at Camp Lejeune’s main gate at 12:30 p.m. Feb. 7 to be escorted to the event. Please plan to remain on base for at least two hours.
Information about the 22th Marine Expeditionary Unit -
A Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) is considered America’s 911 Force - forward deployed, ready to respond to a variety of crises from full-scale combat to humanitarian assistance. A MEU consists of a command element, ground combat element, aviation combat element, and combat logistics element. The 22nd MEU is made up of the following units: Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron (VMM) 263 (Reinforced) (based out of New River Air Station, N.C., with AV-8B Harrier attachments
from Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, N.C.); Battalion Landing Team (BLT) 1st Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment (based out of Camp Lejeune, N.C., which includes various attachments of artillery, reconnaissance, assault amphibious vehicles, and other support units), and Combat Logistics Battalion (CLB) 22 (based out of Camp Lejeune). They are deployed on the ships of Amphibious Squadron 6 (PHIBRON 6): the multipurpose amphibious assault ship USS Bataan (LHD 5); the amphibious transport dock ship USS Mesa Verde (LPD 19); and the amphibious dock landing ship USS Gunston Hall (LSD 44). There are three MEUs on the East Coast (22nd, 24th, and 26th) and three on the West Coast (11th, 13th, and 15th), with a seventh based out of Okinawa, Japan (31st MEU.) The 22nd MEU last deployed from March 2011 to February 2012. During this deployment the MEU deployed to the 5th and 6th Fleet areas of responsibility, where it supported combat operations in Libya and participated in numerous training exercises and theater security cooperation events with partnered countries throughout the Middle East and Djibouti, Africa. In the Mediterranean, the MEU participated in liberty port calls in Italy, Romania, Turkey, Greece and Spain.
The 22nd MEU kicked off its pre-deployment training program in July 2013 and conducted numerous land-based exercises and three at-sea periods with its Navy counterparts. The pre-deployment training program ended in December with the Composite Training Unit Exercise.
This training program included numerous day and night raid exercises, practicing shipboard operations and large-scale exercises that involved every element of the MEU.