U.S. Navy Seals Appreciation Thread (ON TOPIC!)


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Trad climber
Somewhere halfway over the rainbow
May 7, 2011 - 01:40pm PT
Open your mouth Blah blah it's time to change shoes.
The Chief

Trad climber
from the Land where Free Mongols still roam!
May 7, 2011 - 09:18pm PT
One of the most incredible, powerful and honorable Human Beings I have had the sincerest privilege to meet during my 24 year Naval Career and my entire life thus far. Gave me the best direction any young Sailor/Man could have ever gotten from an Old Warrior.

A true honor for me I tell ya. Will never forget him nor those incredible words of motivation he offered me back in 1979, for as long as I live.

MEDAL of HONOR Citation

“For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while participating in a daring operation against enemy forces. PO Thornton, as Assistant U.S. Navy Advisor, along with a U.S. Navy lieutenant serving as Senior Advisor, accompanied a 3-man Vietnamese Navy SEAL patrol on an intelligence gathering and prisoner capture operation against an enemy-occupied naval river base.

Launched from a Vietnamese Navy junk in a rubber boat, the patrol reached land and was continuing on foot toward its objective when it suddenly came under heavy fire from a numerically superior force. The patrol called in naval gunfire support and then engaged the enemy in a fierce firefight, accounting for many enemy casualties before moving back to the waterline to prevent encirclement.

Upon learning that the Senior Advisor had been hit by enemy fire and was believed to be dead, PO Thornton returned through a hail of fire to the lieutenant's last position; quickly disposed of two enemy soldiers about to overrun the position, and succeeded in removing the seriously wounded and unconscious Senior Naval Advisor to the water's edge. He then inflated the lieutenant's lifejacket and towed him seaward for approximately two hours until picked up by support craft.

By his extraordinary courage and perseverance, PO Thornton was directly responsible for saving the life of his superior officer and enabling the safe extraction of all patrol members, thereby upholding the highest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service.”

Lt. Mike Thornton

Thank you Shipmate!

Mountain climber
Bay Area
May 7, 2011 - 09:31pm PT
Chief, that's a cool tribute.

Trad climber
Santa Clara, CA
May 7, 2011 - 09:46pm PT
Chief, that is badass!!!

That is why I'm proud of these guys. F*#kin-A, that dude is a hero. Whether he's a SEAL or not. Just proud.
The Chief

Trad climber
from the Land where Free Mongols still roam!
May 8, 2011 - 12:56am PT
Ironically, the man that Mike saved, was himself also a SEAL and also a MOH Awardee.

Here they are together a couple of years ago at a MOH reunion:

LT. Thomas R. Norris

MEDAL of HONOR Citation:

Lt. Norris completed an unprecedented ground rescue of 2 downed pilots deep within heavily controlled enemy territory in Quang Tri Province. Lt. Norris, on the night of 10 April 1972, led a 5-man patrol through 2,000 meters of heavily controlled enemy territory, located 1 of the downed pilots at daybreak, and returned to the Forward Operating Base (FOB). On 11 April, after a devastating mortar and rocket attack on the small FOB, Lt. Norris led a 3-man team on 2 unsuccessful rescue attempts for the second pilot. On the afternoon of the 12th, a forward air controller located the pilot and notified Lt. Norris. Dressed in fishermen disguises and using a sampan, Lt. Norris and 1 Vietnamese traveled throughout that night and found the injured pilot at dawn. Covering the pilot with bamboo and vegetation, they began the return journey, successfully evading a North Vietnamese patrol. Approaching the FOB, they came under heavy machine gun fire. Lt. Norris called in an air strike which provided suppression fire and a smokescreen, allowing the rescue party to reach the FOB. By his outstanding display of decisive leadership, undaunted courage, and selfless dedication in the face of extreme danger, Lt. Norris enhanced the finest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service.

Truly two of the most courageous, incredible and selfless Human Beings that walk this earth today.

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
May 8, 2011 - 03:17am PT
That's Iceal Hambleton of the Bat 21 story, right? Yeah, that was definitely
worth a MOH!

May 8, 2011 - 06:58am PT
Our local shipyard just christened its newest destroyer, the USS Michael Murphy.


Mountain climber
Queenstown, NZ
May 8, 2011 - 07:19am PT
I'd done a modest punch of ROSO in the RAN. Through service, I'd shared a few windy wet days with the USN and US Army on exercises. I've noted that many a pusser and infantry grunt can go just as hard as many-a SF/SO operator for the first 24-hours; it's the ambition and ability to back that up day after day with a healthy sense of humour that sets the best apart.

Seals rock. And I understand that some of them think bad arse alpinists rock too.
The Chief

Trad climber
from the Land where Free Mongols still roam!
May 8, 2011 - 09:50am PT
The key ingredient of a "Frog" is that everything they do is simply just the job that they signed up for. The most important aspect of that job is that "Failure is Not and Option". What ever is put in front of them is simply a challenge/objective that must be met and completed with precision and 100+% of intensity, focus and selflessness. They are the epitome of the true meaning of a professional. Nothing more, nothing less.

"Quality NOT Quantity"

"The Only Easy Day Was Yesterday"

"Never, Never, Never Quit!"

BUD/S Class 129

Here is a very brief synopsis of my personal experience with the incredible "Frog" philosophy. I will not divulge any names just ranks/rates.

The saddest and most intense day of my Naval career was back in the Spring of 1985 when I was called into the CMC's Office at the SPECWAR BUD/S Compound. I was a First Class and already had over ten years of duty under my belt. Been in "Class" for most of all three phases and pretty certainl that I was going to graduate and continue on with STT, get Pinned etc and then onto a Team and then Operate. Unfortunately for me, I had an ASD repair procedure completed when I twelve. It was all part of my BUD/S application/screening package. I was approved to test up and if I passed to be scheduled for the soonest class. That all went without a hitch and reported to and then classed up at the Amphib/BUD/S Compound, Coronado, in Sept of '84. Well, I knocked then was ordered "to enter" the CMC's office. I did so, reported and was told to be seated in front of the CMC's desk. I quickly noticed that both the OIC and the Dive Med Officer where seated to right side of the office. Master Chief then asked me how my day was going and I quickly answered fine and gave a good ass hoooyaa. He didn't dilly dally around. He came straight to the point. He told me that the BUMED Dive Div in Panama City FL, had returned a report concerning my ASD repair and how it could potentially fail on dive op below 100'. They stamped me a "FAIL". The end recommendation was that I was to be immediately NPQ'd from BUD/S and returned to the Fleet with no possibility of future return to BUD/S nor any Naval Training/Duty Program that entailed diving. My heart sank! Immediately the OIC spoke up and stated that this was one of the worst dismissals from BUD/S or the TEAM's he had ever witnessed or had to order. Then Master Chief quickly told me that he had read my record and saw I was an ABH1, reviewed my prior experience on the 66 Boat and my flying days on the Ice and SAR duties prior to coming to BUD/S. He stated that the TEAM's were definitely losing a valid asset. But, and a big but, the but that followed me the rest of my Naval Career, was that the Fleet and more importantly the Navy, was getting back the class naval professional individual that I was. He instructed me to go back to my duties on the deck of the carrier with pride and to hold my head up high. That this deal was indeed a rotten one but that it would only serve me to be a better ABH and more importantly, the over all mission of the US Navy. The OIC then instructed me to carry on with all that I have learned there at BUD/S and pass on the Frog tradition of "Quality NOT Quantity" for the remainder of time I chose to serve in Navy. They all stood up and came over, shook my hand and thanked me for my dedication and hoped that I would choose to remain in the Navy as I was a over all asset to the big picture.

Life was hard for me for the rest of the year but I shook off the disappointment of being NPQ'd and moved on to the deck of the 43 Boat then to the 65 Boat where I finally made Chief, then volunteered to and flew Combat SAR in Somolia, and after 5 years of service as the Air Dept LCPO retired in March of '99, with a very stellar and awesome career. At least that is what Adm B*R stated at my retirement ceremony.

To this day, my heart and soul lives by much of what I was taught and learned about myself at BUD/S. Truly a precious and life altering experience that I am so grateful for and would never turn in for anything different.

Between my BUD/S experience and that which LT Thorton passed on to me earlier in '79, I am today nothing less than a product of the intense of honor and motivation of the "Frog" mentality and philosophy. Those ST individuals out there that personally know me, understand completely.

I am and will be forever grateful for it all. My sincerest Thank You if anyone out there reads this little written piece and may remember being a part of my life during that timeframe.


Trad climber
Santa Clara, CA
May 8, 2011 - 02:20pm PT
That is f*#king proud, Chief!

enjoy this;

Sport climber
Boulder, Colorado!
Jan 25, 2012 - 10:19am PT
Navy Seals strike again. Great appreciation to these individuals!


Trad climber
30 mins. from suicide USA
Jan 25, 2012 - 11:50am PT
"Vengeance is mine, saith the lord".........

but he subcontracts...


Trad climber
Yacolt, WA
Jan 25, 2012 - 12:47pm PT
Job well done - again.

Trad climber
The Illuminati -- S.P.E.C.T.R.E. Division
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 25, 2012 - 03:28pm PT
Navy Seals Raid Somalia Base

Seal Team Six, the same team that killed Osama Bin Laden in Pakistan last year, raided a Somali pirate camp yesterday to rescue an American woman and Danish man being held hostage. Both are aid workers who’d been kidnapped by the pirates last October. Nine pirates were killed in a firefight during yesterday’s attack, and another five taken prisoner.
Spider Savage

Mountain climber
The shaggy fringe of Los Angeles
Jan 25, 2012 - 04:02pm PT
Please to hear they are keeping our boys in shape practicing on 3rd world goons.

This kidnapping rescue should begin to curtail that industry in Somalia.

While this type of violent hit may carry a high level of injustice, it save the lives of millions and is preferable to a large idiotic war.

A big thanks to those who take the orders and put their life on the line to get'er done.


Mountain climber
GOP Convention
Jan 25, 2012 - 04:22pm PT

Thanks for all of your service.

The evil one
Stefan Jacobsen

Trad climber
Jan 25, 2012 - 04:27pm PT
US Navy SEALs strikes again!
Thanks for freeing our (Danish) citizen as well!

Trad climber
San Diego, CA
Jan 25, 2012 - 08:29pm PT
I was at the Solid Rock gym in San Diego, CA, circa late 1990's, when I watched an incredibly lean and fit climber leading a 5.12 route in the lead cave. After recognizing him on his success, he revealed that he was a Navy SEAL from out at the base on Coronado Island after sharing that I was too was a fellow shipmate. In conversation he also talked of having to keep a sheep alive, after having a mortal wound purposely inflicted, as part of his training. This kid was SWOLE, to say the least!

Since San Diego is the principal homeport of the Naval Pacific Fleet, and having Santee Boulders and Mt. Woodson in my backyard, I encounterd Navy personell and SEALs/wanna-be SEALs quite often. Another memory was of a SEAL named "Kevin" who walked me through the traverse on the Twenty Point Boulder at Santee for the first time after twenty seven years of visiting the place. Being as smart and as fit as those kids are definitely gives them a firm foundation for climbing.

Trad climber
Santa Clara, CA
Jan 25, 2012 - 08:35pm PT
One thing, that I find amazing about these guys, is they never seek recognition, nor fame of any kind.
Certainly, that can't be said for the media darlings, who egotistically occupy our sport of climbing.

While climbers risk their lives to serve themselves, Seals risk their lives for a greater purpose, to serve others.

Doing something greater than yourself, is the very definition of a hero.

Probably one of their most honorable attributes. Everyone knows they are the best, but unlike spray-master climbers, they do not brag, and rarely talk about their exploits.

Being a badass is one thing, but never bragging about it is another.

Truly, the most lethal yet honorable soldiers alive today. I have nothing but admiration for these guys, and their missions are NEVER easy...

Trad climber
San Diego, CA
Jan 25, 2012 - 08:48pm PT
Hey Chief, former HM2 "Doc" here...how did they approve you for Amphib/BUDS training with your ASD repair on your FITREP? Did they overlook the ramifications for deep dive training? I'd say that was a major SNAFU!
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