The Right Coast

July 17, 2005
A long way from Afghanistan
By Tom Smith

Report on the memorial service at the Punchbowl for 8 Navy SEALs killed in Afghanistan.

Story of the mission here. Apparently, this is the largest loss of life for SEALs on a mission since WWII. The SEALs are a tightly knit community. Many SEALs and former SEALs live in San Diego, and a number of SEALs have come through USD law school over the years. They tend to be good students. Verna, who used to run the law school from her perch in the registrar's office for many years, had her retirement party recently, and I noticed a tiny gold trident hanging from her neck. It turned out that both her sons had been Master Chiefs in the SEALs, now both retired, but one now working as a bodyguard in Iraq. His mother didn't want him to go, but he said "that's where my buddies are."

This loss is going to hit them hard, but I doubt if it will do anything but increase their resolve.