In November, Coronado will honor these men with a statue in Glorietta Bay Park.
The “Naked Warrior,” as named by sculptor J. Seward Johnson Jr., is a gift of the National Navy UDT-SEAL Museum in Fort Pierce, Florida. The Coronado City Council accepted the gift at its meeting Tuesday.
Coronado’s Cultural Arts Commission recommended approval of the public art piece, which features a UDT swimmer astride a World War II battle obstacle after receiving input from the Parks and Recreation, Historic Resource and Design Review commissions.
The city says it will establish the statue’s base and perform the landscaping required at the site, near the Glorietta Bay Boat Launch Ramp. Site preparation and installation will cost $50,000 with a dedication ceremony planned Nov. 11 to coincide with Veterans Day 2016.
Nicknamed “Naked Warriors” for their lack of clothing and equipment, these frogmen would swim into enemy waters from far offshore to reconnoiter heavily defended beaches without weapons or support. T
hey would return with explosives to destroy any natural or man-made obstacles they found that might impede Allied amphibious landings. The statue is approximately 6 feet tall and mounted on a 2-foot “horned scully,” a type of boat obstacle that was placed on beaches to prevent Allied amphibious landings.
Two “Naked Warrior” statues exist — one in Fort Pierce and one in Waimanalo Beach in Hawaii.
But no monument commemorating U.S. Navy SEALs and their unique culture, history and connection to Coronado exists here. Seven locations were evaluated, the city said.
The installation will include lighting, construction of the base, landscaping and a commemorative plaque. A raised pedestal will raise the statue to a finished height of 10 feet.
>> Subscribe to Times of San Diego’s free daily email newsletter! Click hereFollow Us: