Navy Statue Dedication Set for Veterans Day

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Navy Statue Dedication Set for Veterans Day

Contact:  Kelly Purvis
(619) 522-2633

City to Dedicate 'First Ashore' Art Installation
'Naked Warrior' Statue Ceremony set for Veterans Day

First Ashore Dedication
Photo Courtesy retired U.S. Navy SEAL Brian Lippe

CORONADO, CA (October 24, 2016) – The City of Coronado invites the public to attend the “First Ashore” art installation, dedication ceremony and statue unveiling of the “Naked Warrior” at 11 a.m. on Veterans Day, November 11. The ceremony will include remarks by Coronado Mayor Casey Tanaka and Rear Admiral Tim Szymanski, commander of Naval Special Warfare Command. 

The event will be held in Glorietta Bay Park, 1875 Strand Way. The site is adjacent to the Glorietta Bay Park Boat Launch Ramp at the northwest corner of the park. A reception will follow the dedication at the Coronado Boathouse, 1985 Strand Way. This event is free and open to the public, but attendees are asked to kindly RSVP.

The “First Ashore” installation includes a bronze statue commemorating the elite men of the Navy’s Underwater Demolition Teams, or UDTs, of World War II. The “Naked Warrior,” as named by sculptor John Seward Johnson II, is a Navy combat swimmer wearing shorts, fins and a face mask. 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. They would return with explosives to destroy any natural or man-made obstacles they found that might impede Allied amphibious landings.

The installation includes the six-foot-tall statue mounted on a two-foot “horned scully,” a type of boat obstacle that was placed on beaches to prevent landings. The statue also honors all maritime commando units that have provided the same skills and support found in today’s U.S. Navy SEAL teams. Currently, there are two “Naked Warrior” statues, one in Fort Pierce, Florida, and one in Waimanalo Beach in Hawaii.

The Coronado City Council accepted the statue in April as a gift from the National Navy UDT-SEAL Museum in Fort Pierce, Florida, and the U.S. Navy SEAL Foundation. Coronado strives to place public art throughout Coronado. The Coronado Cultural Arts Commission, the Schmidt Design Group Inc. of San Diego and the Urban Corps of San Diego County worked on the project. 

There is no other monument in Coronado commemorating U.S. Navy SEALs and their unique culture, history and connection to the City. For more information regarding this event and the project or to RSVP, please visit

For additional information, please contact Kelly Purvis, contract arts administrator, at [email protected] or (619) 341-0137.


"Naked Warrior" Statue
Posted on 11/07/2016
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