Donations needed for Navy SEAL monument at the Oceanfront

An artist rendering of what the monument will look like. (Photo courtesy Navy SEAL Museum)

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — Virginia Beach City Council on Tuesday voted to build a monument in honor of the Navy SEALs at the Oceanfront, but donations are still needed to fund the project.

“A nation that does not honor its heroes will find them in short supply when it really needs them,” said Rick Woolard, a retired Navy captain and SEAL.

Woolard has spearheaded the design and building process.

“I knew it was a good idea when people wanted to get involved for free,” he joked.

Engineering firm Clark Nexsen designed the monument pro bono, but funding is still needed for construction.

“I could use some more $25,000 and $50,000 donations. We’ve had several of those already, but I could definitely use some very soon.”

The monument will include the Navy SEAL Museum’s “Naked Warrior” statue. The warrior will be six feet tall and lifelike, not exaggerated. It’s a nod to the SEAL’s history of being ordinary men, who do extraordinary things.

The tribute, which will stand at 38th Street and the boardwalk, will depict the history of the SEAL program and the city’s part in their story. The monument will also have a star for every SEAL — and a paw print for every SEAL K-9 — killed in the line of duty. At it’s base, the monument will feature sand from more than 100 beaches where vital seal missions have been carried out.

Woolard says no donation is too small, and he has this message for the active duty SEALs:

“I’ll tell you the active duty SEALs, they’d much rather go to the ends of the earth and send me a bag of sand then reach into their pocket books and send me some money. Come on guys, it’s not going to build itself!”

You can donate to help build the monument here.