By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Michael Russell
CORONADO, Calif. – Members of Naval Special Warfare Center hosted students from the San Diego School Safety Patrol and officers from the San Diego Police Department during a day with Navy SEALs, May 18. 2015.
SDPD Juvenile Services, Southeastern Division teamed up with NSWCEN to provide a once in a lifetime opportunity to 185 School Safety Patrol students from the San Diego Unified School District.
“Through our partnership with the SDPD, we have been able to host this event annually for four years,” said Cmdr. (SEAL) Alan Wing, executive officer Naval Special Warfare Center. “The day is intended to thank these great young Americans for the dedication and assistance they provide their schools as part of their school’s safety patrol. We also seek to challenge them and to teach them some of the attributes that are important to a life of service.”
The morning started off with a motivational speech from retired Master Chief (SEAL) Lu Lastra who explained the importance of overcoming adversity.
“The patrollers were challenged at the beginning of the event to live up to the attributes in which our Naval Special Warfare Ethos was built,” said Lastra. “It’s great to see these young school patrol participants exhibiting courage and teamwork as they work together in order to complete the Naval Special Warfare combat course.”
After a face-painting session, the students went to the SEAL obstacle course where students climbed ropes, balanced logs, maneuvered under barbwire and performed surf passage in inflatable boats.
“It used to be that at the end of the year the kids would go to camp but we lost funding due to budget cuts, which meant the kids wouldn’t get to do anything at the end of the year,” said SDPD Officer Chad Crenshaw. “We thought that was unacceptable so we contacted the Navy and the SEALs said they would work with us to give the kids something for all of their hard work.”
All safety patrol students received a medal of recognition and each student captain was recognized with an honorable certificate.
“We want to thank the SEALs for all of the generosity year after year. Every kid leaves wet, cold and with the biggest smile on their face,” said Crenshaw.