Marines Loading Navy Ships Bound For Haiti

Marines from Camp Lejeune will begin deploying to Haiti on Friday in support of relief efforts for the earthquake victims.

Members of the 22nd MEU will begin embarking on Navy ships at the state port in Morehead City. Marines say they will take with them a variety of equipment to assist in disaster relief including trucks, earth moving equipment and water purification systems.

The Marines will be loading the gear onto the amphibious assault ship USS Bataan, amphibious dock landing ship USS Fort McHenry and amphibious dock landing ship USS Carter Hall.

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It is now confirmed that more than 2,000 Marines from Camp Lejeune will soon head to Haiti to help in disaster relief.

The base said members of the 22nd MEU will embark on the amphibious ships USS Bataan, Fort McHenry and Carter Hall. The MEU will consist of Battalion Landing Team 3rd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment; Combat Logistics Battalion 22; Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 461; and its Command Element.

“Our Marines and sailors are trained and ready to make a difference,” said Col. Gareth Brandl, commanding officer of the 22nd MEU. “We will deploy with our Navy team of the Amphibious Ready Group to support the Haitian government’s efforts with humanitarian assistance and disaster relief.”

Camp Lejeune Marines are no strangers to Haiti. They provided humanitarian aid in 2008 after storms killed hundreds of people, and were there in 1994 and 2004 providing stability and support operations.

The 22nd MEU recently returned from a seven-month deployment to U.S. European and Central Commands.

The Marine Corps did not say when the unit would depart.

The 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit from Camp Lejeune is deploying to Haiti in the aftermath of the disastrous earthquake.

The Navy said in a press release Wednesday night the USS Bataan embarked with Marines from the 22nd MEU.

The 22nd MEU returned home from a seven-month deployment in December.

Elements of the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit deployed to Haiti in 2008 and in 1994.

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The Pentagon says Marines from Camp Lejeune are preparing to head to help out in Haiti, but says there are no specific orders yet.

The Washington Post reports that ground units from Camp Lejeune Marines and an Army brigade from Fort Bragg are either preparing to depart, or are on alert to deploy to aid with disaster relief.

The newspaper says some 2,200 Marines, likely from Camp Lejeune, will embark on an amphibious ship and could arrive in Haiti in about four days.

A spokesman for Camp Lejeune's II MEF says so far no units have received deployment orders.

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