2009 -- H 5890

Enacted 02/26/09



H O U S E  R E S O L U T I O N




     Introduced By: Representatives Carter, Slater, Gallison, Watson, and Fox

     Date Introduced: February 26, 2009



     WHEREAS, As the Second World War dawned on the horizon, the United States Navy

realized that fighting in a variety of theaters across the globe would require a vast infrastructure

and the assembling of a unique and highly trained organization that would support the United

States Navy and Marines in remote locations and also have the ability to defend themselves if

attacked. Thus the Seabees, men who were highly skilled craftsmen such as electricians,

plumbers, equipment operators, and construction tradesmen and also fighting men, were formed

and deployed around the globe; and

     WHEREAS, Rear Admiral Ben Moreell, Chief of the Bureau of Yards and Docks,

requested specific authority to organize and man this special organization on December 28, 1941.

On January 5, 1942, he was given that authority and the original battalions were formed at a new

naval base in Davisville, Rhode Island. The first naval construction unit to actually deploy

oversea left Davisville, Rhode Island on January 17, 1942 and arrived at Bora Bora in the Pacific

on February 17, 1942; and

     WHEREAS, On March 5, 1942 all construction battalion personnel were officially

named Seabees by the United States Navy Department and a logo, the Fighting Bee, was created

by Rhode Island native Frank Iafrate, a civilian worker on base; and

     WHEREAS, The Davisville Advanced Base became operational in June of 1942 and

Camp Thomas, a receiving station for personnel, was established in October of that year. The

Base eventually contained 500 Quonset huts for personnel. Finally, on August 11, 1942, the

Naval Construction Training Center, known as Camp Endicott, was commissioned at Davisville.

The camp trained over 100,000 Seabees during World War II; and

     WHEREAS, From the construction of and heroic defense of Henderson Air Field on

Guadalcanal to the Normandy invasion, the Seabees participated in every major amphibious

assault in World War II. They quickly earned a reputation for exceptional creativity and bravery.

More than 325,000 men served with the Seabees in World War II, fighting and building in more

than 400 locations around the globe. They knew more than sixty skilled trades. Many fighting

Seabees perished in the service of our nation; and

     WHEREAS, Since the end of World War II, the Seabees have served our nation in every

conflict America has been involved in, from Korea and Vietnam to the Deserts of the Middle East

and the Global War on Terrorism, as well as serving in numerous humanitarian missions around

the world. The Seabees have always answered the call of duty when our nation was in peril; now,

therefore be it

     RESOLVED, That this House of Representatives of the State of Rhode Island and

Providence Plantations hereby declares March 5th annually to be "Rhode Island Seabees Day".

We thank them for their bravery and for their service to our nation; and be it further

     RESOLVED, That the Secretary of State be and he hereby is authorize and directed to

transmit a duly certified copy of this resolution to Mr. Donald Kurtz.