Craig Smith, EOD Training & Operations Subject Matter Expert at R3 attended the groundbreaking ceremony to mark the start of construction of the Navy Special Operations Memorial at the EODGRU 2 compound at Joint Base Little Creek-Fort Story on Aug. 19.
The ceremony featured speakers and leaders from the Navy Explosive Ordnance Disposal community, both active duty, and veterans, followed by a groundbreaking with shovels.
Speakers included Rear Admiral Brad Andros, director of J10 Directorate of Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction; Capt. Chuck Eckhart, commodore of EODGRU 2; Rear Adm. Frank Morneau, ret. and board member of Navy Special Operations Foundation (NSOF), and Henry Thrift, president of Navy Explosive Ordnance Disposal Association (Navy EODA).
The memorial will be located on the EODGRU 2 compound, and it will feature the names of Navy Explosive Ordnance Disposal technicians and Navy Divers who died in the line of duty. The memorial will be completed in February 2024.
EODGRU 2 is a critical part of the Navy Expeditionary Combat Force (NECF) that clears explosive hazards to provide access to denied areas; secures the undersea domain for complete freedom of maneuver; builds and fosters relationships with a constellation of capable and trusted partners, and protects the homeland and American way of life.