CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. - Marines wishing to attain the machine gunner specialty must pour over nomenclature on weapon systems as well as disassemble and assemble the systems over the course of a few weeks.
Each week is dedicated to a specific weapon system.
Marines going through the machine gunner course at the Battle Skills Training School, however, only get a day and a half to become proficient with each system.
Out of all the Marines who have gone through the course, one managed to stand out above his peers, breaking disassembly and assembly records and obtaining perfect scores on written exams.
Pfc. Jonny Jai Bostok, a landing support specialist with Transportation Support Company, Combat Logistics Battalion 2, 2nd Marine Logistics Group said he volunteered to go through the course after seeing a Marine firing a M2 .50 caliber machine gun at the Combined Arms Exercise aboard Twentynine Palms, Calif.
“I was in a mine resistant ambush protected vehicle [MRAP] and a Marine must have fired 1,000 rounds through the machine gun and I thought it was awesome,” said Bostok. “I knew I wanted to go through the course here so I can be a gunner on future convoys.”
Instructors at the course are excited about the exemplary performance Bostok has displayed.
“As a private first class he has never touched a .50 caliber machine gun, or any machine gun, and for him to come and break disassembly records in a day and a half, where in [Military Occupational Specialty] school for machine guns we have a week per weapon systems is outstanding,” said Sgt. Jeffrey Gause, a Miami, Fla. Native and the head Machine Gun Instructor at BSTS.
Gause credits Bostok’s success to previous Marines who have attended the course and brought the information and skills they learned back to their unit.
“We’ve had Marines from CLB-2 come through previous courses and what [Pfc. Bostok’s performance] shows is that the information is being passed down to the junior Marines, and that’s what we want them to do after this course,” said Gause. “Whether it is taking the information from this course and going back to their shops, or going to the armory and taking out crew-served weapons and passing down information to other Marines."