Duty messmen , not cooks.
To explain further:
There remains a typical set of misconceptions that can cloud the experience of embarkation for all. This is the notion of some uninitiated Marines that the U.S. Navy exists primarily as a taxi service for Marines and should conduct itself in an appropriately service-oriented manner. Then, on the other extreme, are the occasional Navy personnel who think that Marines exist solely to interrupt a ship’s routine, clutter spaces, and make a mess of the paintwork on vehicle and cargo areas. Neither concept could fall farther from the truth. The amphibious force and naval aviation doctrines of the Navy and Marine Corps team provide one of the most striking military capabilities of the history of warfare, primarily through the unique concepts of teamwork, cooperation, and integration that have evolved over decades of training and operations. Your first charge as an officer embarking with your troops must be to create an atmosphere of teamwork, demonstrate the desired symbiotic relationship with navy counterparts. Accordingly, be prepared to readdress ruthlessly all instances of real and pretended friction that can rise from untrained and inexperienced personnel reacting to the obvious conditions of shipboard life.
The CO of troops therefore functions with respect to the ship’s organization as another department head, reporting for the embarked detachments to the commanding officer and executive officer of the ship. Musters, duty assignments, working parties, and the all-important needs of the troops for training and maintenance support on board ship require much attention from the CO of troops. Many of the duties of the CO of troops also approximate those of the commander of the Marine Detachments of yesteryear, so your conduct places you equally at the forefront of tradition and an exemplar of Marine Corps virtues to our sister service.
Shipboard duties for Marine officers embarked with their units may include the following: team embarkation officer, ship’s platoon commander, troop officer of the day/guard officer, billeting officer, troop mess officer, officer’s mess treasurer, and troop communications officer. These and other requirements are made clear by the ship CO before embarkation occurs, mainly through liaison with the advance party that your unit will send to the ship. Your unit will provide a standing working party (ship’s platoon), cooks, and messmen on a fair-share basis to assist in the functioning of the ship, which will be your collective home for the period of embarkation.
Edited by Ken Estes, 03 December 2014 - 1312 PM.