Warriors in their Own Words

Remarkable stories of war told by the men who fought for a proud nation. Their words. Their voices. Our first episodes tell riveting stories from World War II, then we move on to the Vietnam War and other dramatic conflicts.

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CCM Jerry Markham: D-Day from a Seabee’s Perspective

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Chief Machinist Mate Jerry Markham served as a Navy Seabee during World War II and was tasked with destroying German obstacles that could have prevented a successful beach landing on D-Day.

The Naval Construction Battalions, which quickly became known as the Seabees due to their abbreviation, were formed at the beginning of American involvement in World War II. They were created as an amphibious force to construct advanced bases in combat zones, and quickly became well respected because they were composed of only experienced men.

CMM Jerry Markham was a Seabee assigned to a Naval Combat Demolition Unit. On D-Day, their job was to clear German mines and obstacles that were placed in the water at Omaha. Without them, troops would never have reached the shore.

Markham was in close proximity to multiple explosions during the invasion, and began to pass blood. On the third day, he went to a hospital ship, and wasn’t permitted to return to the battle due to his injuries.


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