My husband and I recently watched the movie, “Lone Survivor”, which begins by showing some actaual footage of men training to become Navy SEALS. They say you have a better chance of getting hit by lightning than becoming a SEAL, and after seeing how difficult and brutal the training is, I believe it!
Watching this emotionally moving film took me back to an amazing trip we took to Hutchinson Island, located on Florida’s east coast. The island has 23 miles of beautiful beaches, and is home to the National UDT-SEAL Museum. The museum is located in Fort Pierce, on the actual spot where the original “Frogmen” trained in preparation for World War ll. At the time, they were known as the Underwater Demolition Team (UDT), a band of specially trained soldiers that worked stealth operations during the war.
At the National UDT-SEAL Museum, you’ll see fascinating artifacts and exhibits from that period up to the present, including a nice collection of boats, submarines, vehicles, apparel, uniforms, gear, and impressive displays of authentic weapons. My husband thought the rifles, pistols, knives, grenade launchers, etc. were awesome; for me it was a little overwhelming, especially seeing an actual Nazi Luger from WWII…the same type of weapon that could have been used to shoot at my dad when he was fighting in WWII!
Many of you may have seen the movie “Captain Phillips”, which depicts the hijacking of the Maersk Alabama by Somali pirates and the rescue of the Captain by SEALS. The actual lifeboat where Captain Phillips was held hostage is on display for all to see (and board, which we did!) Very interesting!
Another must-see is the Navy SEAL Memorial, a moving tribute to the SEALs and Frogmen who died in the line of duty. And make sure you budget in time to visit their gift shop. My husband wanted to buy a SEALS tactical knife, but I convinced him he would be better off with a T-shirt!
I highly recommend that you plan on visiting the National UDT-SEAL Museum. You’ll not only be amazed at the accomplishments of these super soldiers, but it’ll give you one more reason to be proud to be an American!