I’m sure everything you said is absolutely correct. When I was at the SEALs training facility on Coronado I was told the odd number SEAL Teams are on the West Coast and the even number SEAL Teams are on the East Coast. I Believe Chief Stella, who showed me around, is with SEAL Team 3.
I asked him how much of the training is mental and how much is physical and he said SEAL training is probably 90% mental. You’re right about being injured, it;s a set back, but you’re still allowed to continue. Chief Stella said up until a few years ago if you were DOR you could try again, but not anymore once you go DOR you’re done for good.
I was so impressed with these young men. It was their day off and Rob took me onto the obstacle course, but still the men who were going through BUD/S were still out on the obstacle course trying to perfect the course, trying to get their time down a minute or two.
One of the first impressions I had of these fine men which stuck with me was when I first walked through the doors into the facility. Chief Stella was explaining something to me and two trainees came through the door and I stepped back against the wall so they could walk by and they asked me very politely if I could step forward so they could pass behind me so they wouldn’t interrupt. My God, I thought where do they find these men? I was very impressed.
We watched the new “tadpoles” as they called the BUD/S students going through their training. You could easily identify them because they were the ones in green utilities, combat boots, helmet liners, bulky Kapok life jackets, carrying a 150 pound rubber boat over their heads, running everywhere they were supposed to be.
Graduation day of Hell Week, where you were lucky to get 8 hour's sleep in a week, was no less rigorous. There was a boat race to one of the Coronado-San Diego bridge pylons and back to the boat ramp, pickup the boat, and double-time to the drill field. Complete the race and you'd made it through Phase 1 of training.