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Happy 70th Birthday to the Navy Seals! "First Ashore" Dedication to Honor SEALS Held Friday at Coronado's Glorietta Bay!

Nov 13, 2016 11:47AM ● By Paul Spear

Happy 70th Birthday to the Navy Seals! "First Ashore" Dedication to Honor 

 SEALS Held Friday at Coronado's Glorietta Bay draws  crowd estimated at over 300 people!

"First Ashore" a Dedication Ceremony at Glorietta Bay Park in Coronado, CA, Dedicated a statue, "Naked Warrior" on a day that honored them both on Veterans Day and on the SEALS 70th birthday.

The 50th Mayor of Coronado, Casey Tanaka, welcomed an estimated crowd of over 300 guest that come out to honor the Navy Underwater Demolition Teams UDT/SEALS Sea Air and Land for their service.

This was the 3rd Naked Warrior Statue to be dedicated. The first was in 1988 at the UDT-SEAL Museum with the second dedication at Bellows Beach in Oahu, Hawaii in 2014. 

The "Naked warrior" was created by Johnson Atelier of Princeton, New Jersey, the workshop of the sculptor John Seward Johnson II.

The very detailed painted bronze statue details the SEAL in WWll attire, Shorts, swim fins, mask grease pencil and tablet, and demolition equipment only.  These SEALS were the "First Ashore"  to research and collect sand samples before the invasions on Omaha and Utah Beaches during WWll.  They were unarmed and unprotected.  The Motto always reminds each one from creation to today and beyond that they "Never Quit" no matter how difficult or seemingly impossible the task confronted.

The attendees included some special former SEALS:  Richard Lyon (Longest serving active duty member of the U.S. Navy SEAL's, also stated as BULLFROG 1. First Navy SEAL to achieve the rank of Admiral in United States Naval History).Class #2, Buzz Eyler Class #3, from the first groups and Marcus Luttrell (Navy Cross) from Class #228 and many from current Classes.
The significance of the date and time 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month is a reference to Armistice Day commemorating the End of WWl and remains a day of recognition for all service members and was officially recorded October 8th 1954 as the first Veteran's Day by President Dwight D. Eisenhower.   

President Eisenhower signing HR7786 changing Armistice Day to Veterans Day

President Eisenhower signing HR7786, changing Armistice Day to Veterans Day. From left: Alvin J. King, Wayne Richards, Arthur J. Connell, John T. Nation, Edward Rees, Richard L. Trombla, Howard W. Watts.

The celebration was begun with a welcoming message by Coronado Mayor Casey Tanaka and the Blessing by Steve Mather, President of Coronado Council of Churches.  The Procession of Colors was conducted by Islander Company Color Guard NJROTC Coronado High School.  The National Anthem was performed by Melodie Bradley PO2 SEAL Team 17. 

Remarks and introductions were made by Mayor Tanaka, RADM Timothy Szymanski Commander Naval Special Warfare Command, Jeff Tyler Cultural Arts Commission and David Watts President Board of Directors of the National Navy UDT-SEAL Museum (Please see the attached video for the full commentary)

The honorary members of the "Unveiling" were:

Gary Bonelli- RADM, USN Retired Class #51 Chairman, Navy SEAL Foundation

Mark Hileman- CDR, USN Retired Class #97 President Navy UDT-SEAL Museum

Richard Lyon- RADM, USN Retired Class #2

Mel Tanaka- MCPO, USN Retired Class #41

Dave Watts- LT, USN Class #27

Reading of the Plaques- Dan'l Steward- CAPT, USN Retired Class #95

This was an emotion provoking ceremony for all present and a congratulatory celebration of our own Navy SEALS historically, presently and for the future  

A reception was held following the ceremony at the Boat House with food drinks and cakes commemorating the 70th Anniversary of the Navy Seals in Coronado.


Linda Heath, Senior Reporter, 


First Ashore "Naked Warrior" Dedication November 11th 2016 in Coronado CA by

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