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Navy Seabees to be recognized with monument at Airborne & Special Operations Museum

By DREW BROOKS | The Fayetteville Observer (Tribune News Service) | Published: February 25, 2017

The Airborne & Special Operations Museum will dedicate a new unit monument to Navy Seabees next month.

The March 5 dedication will honor a unit that has long supported special operations forces overseas.

According to officials, SeaBees have provided services and construction support to all services since 1942.

During the Vietnam War, they constructed all Special Forces base camps and continue to build forward operating bases for special operations forces in Afghanistan today.

"Although they are not a special operations unit, the support they have provided the community has been tremendous," said Paul Galloway, executive director of the Airborne & Special Operations Museum Foundation. "I do not think people understand that these are the builders of the infrastructure of the military in all areas of operations from the base camps to the airfields."

The Seabees monument will be in the front of the museum, alongside monuments for historic airborne and special operations forces and other support units. It will be the first on the museum grounds honoring a Navy unit.

The public event will begin at 2 p.m., officials said. It also will honor two Medal of Honor recipients, Special Forces 1st Lt. Charles Williams and Construction Mechanic 3rd Class Marvin Shields. Shields is the only Seabee Medal of Honor recipient.

The monument will be dedicated by the Seabee Veterans of America Island X-6, Fayetteville chapter.

Navy Capt. Craig Hamer, of Naval Expeditionary Combat Command, will be the guest speaker.

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©2017 The Fayetteville Observer (Fayetteville, N.C.)
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The Navy has unveiled an updated Seabees logo and theme ahead of the fighting construction force's 75th anniversary in 2017.
COURTESY OF THE U.S. NAVY

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