View Full Version : New NAVY SEALS Monument opened today in Virginia Beach

07-20-2017, 08:09 PM
It's beautiful to see. Not far from my home. Opened today.
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07-20-2017, 08:18 PM
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) – Seventy-five years ago, the Navy SEALs got their start in Virginia Beach — back then known as the Scouts and Raiders. But until Thursday, there was no way to publicly honor the service and sacrifice of the elite fighting force.

“I think it’s important for the city and for the people of the city to understand the history we have here,” said a retired SEAL who identified himself only as Tony. He was one of hundreds who turned out for the unveiling of the Navy SEAL monument at the Virginia Beach Oceanfront.

Bruce McCormick, of Chesapeake, an original Scouts and Raiders member, was also there. He called the tribute long overdue.

“There’s nothing like it, as far as I’m concerned, for what it stands for. When I look back, that’s what I did,” McCormick said.

The monument depicts the rich history of the SEAL program and the city’s part in their story. The monument’s centerpiece is a statue of a Naked Warrior that stands six feet tall. At the monument’s base is sand from more than 100 locations worldwide, where important missions have been carried out. Along the back portion of the tribute, there are 292 gold stars for every Navy SEAL killed in the line of duty and eight paw prints for their fallen K-9s.

The Naked Warrior is purposefully life-sized, rather than larger than life, like some other statues along the boardwalk. It’s a quiet nod to the SEAL mindset that they should be ordinary men who do extraordinary things.

“That’s the way it should be. The original frogman, a quiet professional, yet representing all of our community in a great way,” said Steve Gonzalez with the UDT-SEAL Association, who came out for the unveiling.

Rear Admiral Tim Szymanski, Commander Naval Special Warfare Command, was also in attendance. He says while the SEALs have changed over the years, the mission remains the same.

“Today’s Naked Warriors — the SEALs — have evolved to meet the challenges and seize the opportunities to fight and win against our enemies and protect our sacred homelands, its freedom and its values,” he said.