— They are the go-anywhere, do-anything Marines of 1st Battalion, 25th Marine Regiment.
“New England’s Own,” Personnel Security Detachment, a team that provide escorts and a quick reaction force, is proving to be the reliable go-to force when the mission calls for a safe ride across the city or bringing to bear heavy guns.
“In technical terms, we provide a tactical convoy for the battalion commander to survey his battle space with the ability to act as a maneuver element if need be,” said 23-year-old Sgt. Michael R. Beauton, a military policemen by trade, now serving as the PSD’s platoon sergeant.
“Really, we provide a safe but deadly escort,” said Lance Cpl. Christian B. Silverthorne, a 24-yearold infantryman from
, assigned to a dismount fire team.
It takes a wide variety of talent to keep the PSD rolling. They operate from a series of uparmored humvees, just like any other Marine convoy. They’re stocked with nearly every sort of automatic weapon and just about any trick in the hat they might need to get out of a jam. Their ranks are made of Marines skilled in motor transport, communications, infantry and military policemen, among others.
“It makes for one hell of a versatile group of Marines, capable of handling any task,” explained Beauton, from
“All of the Marines here have special tools and experiences to add to our toolbox.”
There’s hardly a time the detachment is found lounging around. When they’re not on the road, they’re training, rehearsing, or preparing for their next mission. Constantly refueling humvees and receiving mission briefs is a daily lifestyle for the PSD, who have stacked thousands of miles onto their humvees’ odometers after almost five months here.
“It can make for some long days and hard work,” said 21-year-old Lance Cpl. Giancarlo Garcia, a 21-year-old turret gunner from
“But we do it for a reason. There is no better way to know the battlefield than firsthand.”
The Marines’ ongoing mission often times puts them deep into the heart of Fallujah, a city that was once an insurgent stronghold. That’s changed now that Marines control the city, but dangers still lurk.
When those dangers arise, the PSD is on the hunt.