US Marine Corps, April 18, 2016 - Okinawa by Capt Jennifer Giles - Two MV-22B Ospreys with Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 265 (Reinforced), 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (31st MEU) delivered relief supplies to Hakusui Sport Park on the island of Kyushu, Japan today in support of the Japanese Ground Self Defense Force relief efforts after a series of earthquakes struck the island of Kyushu earlier this week.
Two MV-22B Ospreys departed from Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni and landed at the Japanese Ground Self-Defense Force Takayubaru Camp currently used as a relief distribution point, loaded supplies and delivered them to the Hakusui Sport Park. The Ospreys made two trips between the distribution point and the sports park before returning to MCAS Iwakuni to prepare for follow on assistance as needed. The Ospreys delivered four loads of relief supplies including blankets, toiletries, food and water.
“The Ospreys executed a long-range mission and were able quickly deliver supplies to the austere location of the Hakusui Sports Park demonstrating its ability to land in remote locations on unprepared surfaces and deliver badly needed aid,” said Col. Romin Dasmalchi the commanding officer of the 31st MEU.
The delivery of the relief supplies was first round of relief supplies transported by the 31st MEU in support of the JGSDF’s efforts in response to the recent earthquake. The JGSDF and the U.S. Marines worked together to deliver four loads of relief goods in less than two hours.
“We are honored to work with our Japanese counterparts and help deliver relief supplies to the Japanese citizens living in the heavily damaged areas in the island of Kyushu in their time of need,” said Dasmalchi.
The 31st MEU is the only continually forward-deployed MEU and remains the Marine Corps’ force-in-readiness in the Asia-Pacific region.