"It was just August when the company commanders created the concept of Raider One — a single vehicle that can deposit up to 10 scouts on the ground within seconds to fight in conjunction with Light Armored Vehicles known as "war pigs." The setup provides new flexibility during hand-to-hand combat and has proven so effective that Raider is assigned constant missions in Fallujah."
"This is urban combat to a 'T,' with 360 degrees of danger," says Sgt. Kevin Boyd, the young-faced chief scout from Pittsburgh, Pa., who forged Raider's clockwork skills of houseclearing by daily practice on the ship to the Middle East, storming stairwells and clearing catwalks on upper decks.
"You've always got to be looking in every house — behind every couch there could be a guy hiding," says Sergeant Boyd, an Eagle Scout who wore his first camouflage at age 3 and owns more than 20 guns.
Boyd graduated from high school on a Friday, celebrated on Saturday, and left for the Marines on Monday. He says Fallujah is "10 times" as dangerous as the Iraq invasion, during which LAR lost one marine, who stepped on an artillery shell.
"It's a lot faster combat, a lot more deliberate. Grenade, grenade, rocket-boom! You're in," says Boyd. For luck, he keeps an Ace of Spades in his helmet.
"I love the adrenaline of it, the fast pace," Boyd adds. "I'm breathing in plaster and composition B from the grenade, choking on it — spitting out black stuff as I'm clearing the room out. It's great!"
USATODAY.com - Marines on the front lines talk of God and guns