State Guard, The Citadel join in 15-mile ruck march in Francis Marion National Forest
Guard members, state guards can’t be sent to fight foreign wars and are called into action by the governor or adjutant general.
When called upon, the state guard must be prepared to mobilize quickly — often within hours.
“Today we’ll be moving more than a ton of a material, on our backs, from our forward operating post,” said Mullikin, as the group put on their packs and took a few more swigs of water.
Besides the practicality of the exercise, the event actually served as the first time the State Guard and The Citadel have trained together since 1862, according to Maj. Glenn Remsen, the tactical officer for The Citadel’s Echo Company and a member of the guard.
Remsen said the plan going forward is hto old training on a quarterly basis with the State Guard and cadets.
The cadets didn’t seem fazed at the prospect of the 15-mile hike.
Echo Company’s Michael Czyrnik said, “Some of us are out here for service learning credits and the rest of us just want to smoke ourselves.”
The group wasn’t composed of all young bucks.
Among the hikers was 55-year-old Lt. Col. Mary Louise Resch, division adjutant for the S.C. State Guard, who helped carry water.
“It is what it is. We’re expected to do everything the guys do. As a female in a leadership role, it’s important for us to come out here and set an example. It’s ridiculous for me to ask troops to do this if I’m not willing to do it.”