Saturday, June 28, 2008

Hello from Hot VA,
It is summer here, that is for sure. It has been sunny here with temperatures 90-100 degrees every day. To add to the heat it also tends to be humid with periods of smoke every day due to the fires that are still burning in the great dismal swamps. I am pretty well adjusted to the heat so it does not tend to bother me to bad and I can go swimming in a pool on base every day if I find time so that makes the heat a lot of fun. I am now part of 1F4. This means ever day after work I can do what I want. I have no more curfews every night and no more formations. Due to the over full barracks at Camp Allen we are still stuck here at the NW annex. We had another PFT Friday but I only had to do it to motivate the slow runners as I had the highest PFT in my platoon.
The only other activity I have been involved in is helping out with VBS at the Southern baptist church I have been attending down the road. It was fun to be with kids again and to just be a normal human for a little bit. One exciting thing is 13 of the 58 kids accepted Jesus so it is neat to see the Word of God not returning void. I helped with the final program Friday and it was also fun to talk to the parents and one parent even asked me if I wanted to help him with landscaping and yard work. It would be nice to have a job on the side that I can do in my extra time while I am still here. Any way that is my life. Please pray for the 13 kids that accepted the Lord. Pray for my plt mates as I try to witness to them and get them to come with me to church this Sunday.

Christ's Marine,

Monday, June 23, 2008

Dear Friends and Family,

It has been a very busy time here at the NW annex. The end of last week we did what is called the finex which is the culmination of training for security forces. During that time we hiked about 9 miles through woods and swamps and attacked and secured an "embassy" in a fake town made to practice urban assault. Next we hiked about 2 more miles and secured and captured a compound with buildings and a ECP (Entry Control Point) set up. The next hours from 1430 till 0300 Friday morning we ran the ECP and set up security around the compound. During this time about every hour aggressors would come and try to break into the compound and smuggle weapons into the compound. They ended up being able to smuggle 2 M9 pistols into the compound and we had a battle with paint bullets. So it was a great time during which we made mistakes but generally we learned from them and moved on as thankfully we were only using paint bullets this time.

At the end of it all we ran 2+ miles back to base with packs and weapons and then it was found the the aggressors had lost a pistol. So back we went back out to the range and thankfully it was found at about 0930 and we were finally able to hit the rack after we had been awake and hiking for over 28 hours. So training has basically been completed at MCSFT Co. (Marine Corps Security Force Training Company). This last weekend I went to Virginia beach and played some sand volley ball till it stared raining and then went back to base. Sunday I attended Lake Drummond Baptist Church for the last time before I move. It was great having a Christian church I could plug into so near my base. Sadly the chaplain here on base would not let me start a Bible study with the Pastor of that Church here on base as SHE said it would make other churches in the area jealous. Any way that was the death of that vision.
Monday I ran a PFT and I praise the Lord for his strenth as I was able to do 20 pull ups, 112 Crunches, and ran the 3 miles in 17.34 minutes. So I got a 300 PFT again. Praise the Lord. Since then all I have been doing is de-issuing gear and doing grad practice. You can be in prayer as I have been chosen to do the opening prayer in the graduation ceremony in front of the Company commander and every one else. I consider it an Honor, but I pray that I can glorify God as I pray to him. Well I got to go finish packing as I leave to Norfolk tomorrow to 1st FAST 5th Plt. Thanks for your prayers.

Christ's Marine,
David Pillman

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Pictures from David

David sent us a couple pictures today. Here the are....

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Monday, June 16, 2008

Dear Friends and Family,
Training continues here at the NW Annex. Last Friday we trained with paint bullets all day in a training town. That was really fun. The day started with a 2 mile run out the range with weapons and packs. Then we practiced patrolling and capturing houses and got killed by the instructors who were acting like insurgence every time. then in the after noon we patrolled back to base about 4 miles through woods and swamps. It was really one of the best training days as it was practicing what we have been studying the last 8 months in a realistic way.
Saturday I got a new cell phone and watched movie and hung out at a mall for way to long. I hate malls and all they stand for. Any way the next day Sunday was much better with church in the morning. The fathers day service was on Moses from Hebrews 11:23-27. Then Sunday afternoon I went for a 4.5 mile run and studied about Terrorism all evening.
Today we ran for about 3 miles for PT and then we went to class and took the terrorism test and every one but 4 people passed. I got about 92.5% on the test. Praise the Lord as it was a very confusing test and it was easy to over think the questions. Our training down at Red range with paint bullets was canceled for to day do to smoke caused by fires in North Carolina. It was considered dangerous to exercise in all the smoke. So we all got off at 1500 and so I had time to post this post to day. Life continues to be exciting, but pray that I can continue to be a real light to the marines a work with every day and pray that my quad will heal from being pulled during lunges to day in PT.

Christ's Marine

Friday, June 13, 2008

Coates twins update

The Coates twins are now moved to a different hospital. Ellysa wieghed 3# 10 oz. on Mon. and Austin weighed 3# 14 oz. on Mon. Ellysa is now in a basinette and her mother, Ashley can nurse her. Austin is still in an incubator as he is still recovering from a staph infection to the lungs. They actually begin to look a little chubby in the face. Ashley is able to bathe Ellyssa and to hold her whenever she wants. Austin still has some restrictions because of the incubator. Thank you for all of your prayers on their behalf. Praise God for His wonderful works to the children of men.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

From the North West Annex, Chesapeake, VA

Hey this is David in person!!
I have figured out how to post. You got to love the weather here at security force training. It has been over 100 Degrees F the last 4 days. Finally today it was a high of only about 85 Degrees. Today we did Physical Training (PT) in the morning as we do every morning. It lasts about 1 hour which is long enough in 80 degree weather with high humidity. Then I took a test on Guard Mount and I got about 94%. I should have done better but I made stupid mistakes. Anyway I passed. We then had classes all afternoon as normal. This is basically what my life has been like. I get off between 1600 and 1800 and then do PT on my own.
Now on to a more long term subject. I am to be stationed in Norfolk, VA in Camp Allen as part of the 1st fast team either 4th or 5th squad. This means I am going to be in a force that is stationed over seas the next 2 years to be ready to help in case of emergency such as to defend an embassy or if some other emergency situation arises overseas. I am graduating from this school on the 25th of June to go to 1st fast.
In the spiritual side of my life, I recently read through James and it was a great reminder to live out my faith amongst so much immorality. I am also trying to start a Bible study with a Southern Baptist pastor here on this base. I am working on setting up a meeting with the chaplain assistant to see if I can use the chapel for these services. The sad part is that I am going to be leaving in two weeks so I will not be able to oversee these services. Till later.

Christ's Marine,
Lcpl Pillman, David