Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
Seabees ~ Can Do
We build ~ We fight
For peace with freedom
(On the frieze behind the statue):
With willing hearts and skillful hands, the difficult we do at once; the impossible takes a bit longer
(On the panel to the left of the statue):
Dedicated to the men of the United States Naval Construction Batallions
Born in the early days of World War II when the nation was in dire peril, their mission was to build bases for the combat forces, to defend those bases and to provide support of whatever kind required.
Organized and commanded by officers of the Civil Engineer Corps of the Navy, recruited largely from building trades of organized labor, butressed by the construction industry, the Seabees quickly proved their total competence.
High morale, expert skills, versatile ingenuity, strong devotion to duty and deep sympathy for the needy are the hallmarks of their record. Their motto "Can Do" symbolizes their tradition and their achievements.
Generations of Seabees have added to the laurels of their forbears. In war and in peace they have maintained their high repute as builders, fighters and humanitarians.
(On the panel to the right of the statue):
whose arm hath bound the restless wave
who biddest the mighty ocean deep
its own appointed limits keep
O hear us when we cry to Thee
for those in peril on the sea.
Lord, stand beside the men who build
and give them courage, strength and skill
O grant them peace of heart and mind
and comfort loved ones left behind
Lord, hear our prayer for all Seabees
where ere they be on land or sea.
Location. 38° 53.049′ N, 77° 3.868′ W. Marker is in Arlington National Cemetery, Virginia, in Arlington County. Marker is on Memorial Drive near Jefferson Davis Highway. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Fort Myer VA 22211, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Hiker (within shouting distance of this marker); Richard Evelyn Byrd (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); 101st Airborne Division (about 700 feet away); The Embassy Bombings (approx. 0.2 miles away); Armored Forces (approx. 0.2 miles away); The 23rd Regimental Combat Team in Korea (approx. ¼ mile away); Naval Combat Demolition Units (approx. ¼ mile away); 199th Light Infantry Brigade (approx. 0.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Arlington National Cemetery.
More about this marker. When the United States was suddenly and dramatically pulled into World War II following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in December 1941, there was an acute shortage of military bases to support American combat forces deployed in Europe and the Pacific. To alleviate the shortage, the United States Navy established an engineering and construction force known as the U.S. Naval Construction Battalion, or C.B.
Soon its members were universally known by the nickname derived from those initials, the Seabees.
Along Memorial Drive near the Arlington Cemetery Metro stop, this monument is dedicated to the men who have served as Seabees. A larger-than-life figure dominates the monument depicting the momentous contributions made by the Construction Battalion. The image is that of a Seabee, who in the midst of a construction project, stops to make friends with a young child.
On a semicircular bronze bass-relief, sculptor Felix de Weldon (who also sculpted of the Iwo Jima monument)
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on January 23, 2008, by Tom Fuchs of Greenbelt, Maryland. This page has been viewed 1,969 times since then. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on January 23, 2008, by Tom Fuchs of Greenbelt, Maryland.