National Navy SEAL Museum
Located at the museum is a memorial created to honor the Navy SEALs who have died while serving their country. There are 280 men honored with their names' carved into granite panels that surround a sculpture. The sculpture is a modern SEAL combat diver in bronze. Another important statue stands in front of the museum. This statue is called the Naked Warrior he was named this because he represents the typical WWII era diver who had no weapons or protective clothing. Inside the museum there are exhibits on special weapons, canine SEALs, special vehicles, as well as original obstacles used in military training dating back to 1942. The weapons on display at the museum are unique because many are on of a kind or designed specially for SEAL missions. SEALs use the best weapons in the world and these exhibits display them to the public
Backstory and Context
The Navy SEAL is a unit that has accomplished a lot of tasks for the United States Government. Even before it’s formal creation in 1962 “Responding to President Kennedy’s desire for the Services to develop an Unconventional Warfare (UW) capability” (Military.com 28), the SEAL had previous unofficial history between the Korean War and World War II. For WWII, the Allies needed an amphibious assault unit to create path for other units to push against enemy axis lines, which is why, according the Military.com, “Army and Navy personnel assembled at Amphibious Training Base, Little Creek, on 15 August 1942 to begin Amphibious Scouts and Raiders (Joint) training.” This unofficial organized unit was also made to learn more about other tasks than amphibious assault such as demolition and raiding tactics, further implicating it into a specialized unit. And along the way, they became specialized in infiltration and covert operations. Later when the Korean War began in 1950, the unofficial SEAL also engaged in operations in the war up to the point of its formal creation in the United States military. After such, the military utilized this special unit in many operations in the coming conflicts and wars that the U.S had been involved in, from covert operations, to infiltration, to demolition assignments, sabotage, and amphibious assault.
The U.S Navy SEAL, however, never would have made it into what it is now, if it wasn’t the training they received. When they first were created it was amphibious assault training and later the same year it was demolition and explosive wire-cutting concentrated training to total the team into knowing and training for both things rather than just one thing and one focus. On top of all these objective-based training, each soldier in the team had to be absolutely physically fit and able to go to the extreme than an average soldier. According to the U.S Navy's website in career recruitment, “SEAL training has been described as 'brutal', preparing you for the extreme physical and mental challenges of SEAL missions. Preparation consists of more than 12 months of initial training that includes Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL BUD/S School, Parachute Jump School and SEAL Qualification Training (SQT), followed by an additional 18 months of pre-deployment training and intensive specialized training. It’s all designed to push you to your physical and mental limits.” This type of training calls for the right environment for it, and Florida was a big choice even to this day. The grounds on which the NAVY SEAL-UDT Museum is built on, was formerly one of the few locations the SEALS trained on. Florida was a perfect choice because it is almost completely surrounded by sea water and training grounds like the one the Museum is built on (which was used between 1943 to 1946), has a perfect conditioned beach in proximity of it that had been used for exercises such as log runs and underwater and surface water activities such as diving or rafting. And within the training grounds is a large even area perfect for building various obstacle courses SEALs were trained to go through. To this day you can get a good sight of a simulated small obstacle course the SEALs used, at the museum. Florida was also a great choice since it gave SEALs the opportunity to train alongside with other soldiers and interact with other soldiers since a lot of military establishments were built in Florida since WWII.
To this day, a museums such as this are placed to commemorate the soldiers themselves and the grounds of which they have trained on. The Navy SEAL-UDT Museum is in place today since 1985. “From the Patrol Boat Riverines (PBRs) that enabled the Navy SEALs in navigating and dominating the rivers and canals in Vietnam to a replica of Osama Bin Laden’s compound in Abbottabad Pakistan, the Navy SEAL Museum houses an array of artifacts that showcase several perilous SEAL missions and tell the story of their forerunners,” according to the Museum’s website. The museum does a great job of giving the long history of the Navy SEAL even of before it’s official establishment in the Department of Defense all those times long ago. The museum later on was classified as a National Museum in 2007.
The museum can be visited today, and various things like weapons, vehicles, and interactive obstacle courses are on display for the public to use. Statues such as the Naked Warrior is present and weapons such as the customized MacMillan sniper rifle is also on display. Submarines are on display and boats of which can be entered and interacted with are shown as well for visitors to take joy in learning, examining, and understanding the things of which SEAL operatives have had to use.
About the Navy SEAL Museum.” National Navy UDT-SEAL Museum, National Navy UDT-SEAL Museum, www.navysealmuseum.org/about-the-navy-seal-museum.
“Train to Become an Elite U.S. Navy SEAL.” FInd Jobs & Careers in the U.S. Navy - Navy.com, Navy Recruiting Command, www.navy.com/careers/navy-seal
Military.com. “Navy SEALs: Background and Brief History.” Military.com, www.military.com/special-operations/about-the-navy-seals.html.