Seabees celebrate birthday with annual ball

Seabees take pictures before entering the ballroom.
Seabees take pictures before entering the ballroom.
Table for prisoners of war and those missing in action.
Table for prisoners of war and those missing in action.

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - Seventy-two years ago this month the Seabees were created. The Seabees gathered to celebrate their work and history at the Mississippi Coast Convention Center. Seven hundred Seabees and their families from Naval Construction Battalion Center gathered at the Mississippi Coast Coliseum for a time of celebration and reflection on the Seabee legacy.

Information Systems Chief Tara Mayes, "They provide a very important service to the Marines, Army and Navy forces throughout the entire world. So they support everybody."

"The Seabees support the U.S. Military and they go all over the world deploying and they've been doing so ever since 1942 in all of our conflicts and it's an opportunity to just take a break and celebrate our birthday," said Captain John Adametz.

"It's a chance for the younger guys in the Navy to come out and experience what our history and heritage mean, as well as, bring some of the older retired folks in who come in and celebrate and we all have a different set of experiences and level of experience. So it's good to get together and just mesh with all that," said Senior Chief Petty Officer Chris Beck.

Though there were plenty of causal discussions and storytelling, the event moved on schedule as Color guard members paraded the colors around the ball room.

Next those who served in wars were recognized by applause.

Veterans from the Armed Forces Retirement Home got the longest ovation for their deployments in World War Two, Vietnam and Korea. In a sea of tables one was set up without any guests. This was the table for the Prisoners of War and those soldiers missing in action.  State and city leaders, representatives from various battalions and guest speaker Rear Admiral Frank Morneau also attended the event.

This year the event was smaller than last year due to three battalions out on missions.

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