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  Jacksonville, FL  32212-0106

 Naval Mobile Construction Battalion FOURTEEN

 History

       Naval Construction Battalion (NCB) 14 was commissioned July 14, 1942 as the 14th Naval Construction Battalion out of Camp Allen Norfolk, Virginia (Naval Construction Training Center) in support of WWII. The battalion's first commanding officer was CDR T. F. Reilly, Jr. The total number of personnel  deployed from the 14th NCB was 991.Naval Construction Battalion (NCB) 14 was commissioned July 14, 1942 as the 14th Naval Construction Battalion out of Camp Allen Norfolk, Virginia (Naval Construction Training Center) in support of WWII. The battalion's first commanding officer was CDR T. F. Reilly, Jr. The total number of personnel  deployed from the 14th NCB was 991.
The 14th NCB departed September 9, 1942 by ship and aITived in Noumea, New Caledonia on September 30, 1942. There they were tasked with building new facilities and constructing airfields. Their tasking changed on October 20, 1942, as resources were needed at Aola on Guadalcanal to build new facilities and construct airfields in support of operation ACORN RED ONE. The 14th NCB atTived in Aola Bay on November 4, 1942 after surviving an attack by an enemy submarine. While at Guadalcanal, they were constantly attacked by enemy air raids. Even amidst the attacks, the 14th NCB continued to survey the grounds for an airfield and create a temporary camp to accommodate the personnel there. Once the area was clear, the troops departed Aola Bay and on November 26, 1942 landed on Koli Point. Shortly after reaching Koli Point, the 14th NCB began work on the famed "Mahogany Bridge" where they successfully com­ pleted the connection of the Koli area with the Lunga area in less than two weeks. The 14th NCB also prepared an emergency landing strip in 13 days.
The next big project for the 14th NCB was the 6-24 runway (Camey field) and the Northwest Taxi-way. This project began on December 28, 1942 and was completed by March 23, 1943. A huge reconstruction project was r nbequired due to damage caused by heavy rains in May of 1943. The reconstruction of the Mahogany Bridge plus the stabilizing and resurfacing of the 6-24 runway were priorities,  however camp repairs and improvements were also made at this time.  All of these projects were completed by June 15, 1943.
      After detachment from Acom Red One and being reassigned in July 1943, the 14th NCB was tasked with building another bridge known as the Metaponia Bridge. This bridge was completed in 18 days. The 14th NCB was relieved by the 6lst NCB, and departed Guadalcanal on November 9, 1943. After a 3-day port visit to Pearl Harbor they arrived in the United States at Camp Parks, California on December  11, 1943.After detachment from Acom Red One and being reassigned in July 1943, the 14th NCB was tasked with building another bridge known as the Metaponia Bridge. This bridge was completed in 18 days. The 14th NCB was relieved by the 6lst NCB, and departed Guadalcanal on November 9, 1943. After a 3-day port visit to Pearl Harbor they arrived in the United States at Camp Parks, California on December  11, 1943.
The 14th NCB departed for their second deployment on October 21, 1944 and an-ived in Pearl Harbor on October 29, 1944. There they continued where they left off in November 1943, again under the command of CDR Reilly. The 14th NCB stayed in Pearl Harbor doing various projects until February 1945 when they made preparations for departure to Saipan.
The 14th NCB landed and reported to the 8th Naval Construction Brigade and 35th Naval Construction Regiment on April 1, 1945. At that.time, they began staging for Okinawa, Japan. The Battalion landed on Okinawa on May 15, 1945. There they did what they'd become known for, "build and fight." In June 1945 the 14th NCB performed several projects such as, the Minecraft Storage Refuge, the Ship Pier Storage Yard and the Tengan Auxiliary Pier. Also, during this period (June 27, 1945), the Battalion began reporting to the 10th Naval Construction Brigade and the 44th Naval Construction Regiment.
On July 15, 1945 the 14th NCB fell under a new commanding officer, CDR C.J. Simandl. Under his command they performed many tasks. They worked on the ammunition Piers, Chimu MoGas Farm (Sealines), GSK Warehouse, and the other ongoing projects assigned to the battalion before he took over. CDR Simandl remained their commanding officer until the deactivation of the battalion on April 12, 1946.
RNMCB 14 was commissioned on July 1, 1961. The Battalion readiness supp011site was established in Jacksonville, FL where it is located today and was composed of I 0 units located in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, and Alabama rightfully earning it the title "The Pride of Dixie".
      The Battalion was re-designated NMCB 14 in July 1991, and was made up of 9 detachments in Florida, Georgia and Puerto Rico. Between 1961 and 2004, NMCB 14 performed reserve training at such locations as Davisville, RI., Camp LeJeune, NC., Little Creek, VA and Camp Goshen VA., GulfPort, Camp Swampee and Pascagoula MS, Charleston SC, Camp Pendleton CA, New Orleans LA., Pensacola, FL. and Roosevelt Roads, Puerto Rico. The Battalion also deployed overseas to locales like Spain, Germany and the Panama Canal Zone where they took part in jungle warfare training. Other training performed during these deployments and annual training cycles included: developmental and organization
training, operation capability analysis, amphibious assault training, military/technical skills and various construction projects. In March of 2004, NMCB  14 was called to active duty under the command of CDR John D. Prien III in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom II.  The Battalion deployed 397 members to Al Anbar Province Iraq, via Camp Morrell Kuwait. During their seven-plus month deployment they participated in numerous civil-military operations including: construction of three Iraqi Border Police  outposts along the Iraqi  border, a major camp improvement project  in Husaybah  for the Marines, a 50 Southwest Asia (SWA) hut berthing project, a massive  125 SWA hut expansion project completed in less than two months, a police academy, a detention  center, an outreach  center, improvements to an Iraqi National  Guard training facility and they took the lead in teaching Iraqi youth construction skills in the Iraqi Construction Apprentice Program (ICAP) which NMCB 14 graduated the first class in yhe country. Just weeks prior to the end of the deployment ,
CDR Prien was promoted to Captain by the Commander of the First Marine Expeditionary Force (IMEF) Engineer Group (IMEG), RADM Charles Kubic. .
The Battalion returned from Iraq and arrived in Gulfport, MS on October 29, 2004. On November 2, 2004 a change of command ceremony was held in which CAPT John D. Prien III was relieved by CDR Scott Shiver. CDR Shiver continues to cany on the fine tradition of NMCB 14 and prepares the battalion for the next time they are called on to "build and fight."
 
 


 
We Will Never Forget
     The Seabees of Naval Mobile Construction Battalion FOURTEEN said good bye to seven of their brothers who were killed in Iraq. During a memorial ceremony held May 15, 2004 in Ar Ramadi, Iraq, members of NMCB 14, Marines and Soldiers paid their final respects to seven Seabees who sacrificed their lives defending freedom.The Seabees of Naval Mobile Construction Battalion FOURTEEN said good bye to seven of their brothers who were killed in Iraq. During a memorial ceremony held May 15, 2004 in Ar Ramadi, Iraq, members of NMCB 14, Marines and Soldiers paid their final respects to seven Seabees who sacrificed their lives defending freedom.
On April 30, 2004 while returning from a mission to deliver materials and equipment to a Marine outpost on the Iraq-Syria border, FOURTEEN's convoy was hit by an improvised explosive device. That evening, two brave Seabees, Hull Technician 2nd Class (Surface Warfare) Jason B. Dwelley, age 31, from Apopka, Fla., and Equip­ ment Operator 3rd Class Christopher M. Dickerson, age 33, from Eastman, Ga., were killed in action against the enemy. Six other Seabees were wounded.
     Then on May 2, 2004, indirect mortar fire took the lives of five men; Builder 2nd Class Michael C. Anderson, age 36, from Daytona Beach, Fla.; Equipment Operator 2nd Class Trace W. Dossett, age 37, from Orlando, Fla.; Construction Mechanic 2nd Class Scott R. McHugh, age 33, from Boca Raton, Fla.; Builder 2nd Class Robert B. Jenkins, age 35, from Stuart, Fla., and Steel Worker 3rd Class Ronald A. Ginther, age 37, from Auburndale, Fla. Another 31 Seabees were wounded.Then on May 2, 2004, indirect mortar fire took the lives of five men; Builder 2nd Class Michael C. Anderson, age 36, from Daytona Beach, Fla.; Equipment Operator 2nd Class Trace W. Dossett, age 37, from Orlando, Fla.; Construction Mechanic 2nd Class Scott R. McHugh, age 33, from Boca Raton, Fla.; Builder 2nd Class Robert B. Jenkins, age 35, from Stuart, Fla., and Steel Worker 3rd Class Ronald A. Ginther, age 37, from Auburndale, Fla. Another 31 Seabees were wounded.
     The ceremony included the playing of the national anthem followed by an invocation by LCDR Lulrick Balzora, Chaplain of NMCB 14; Commanding Officer, CDR John Prien; Command Master Chief (SCW), Kevin Trost; Chief Construction Mechanic (SCW) Benjamin Slaughter; Construction Mechanic 1st Class (SEAL) Mark Steffner all spoke of their fallen comrades. The 21 gun salute, taps and the final good byes finalized the memorial commemorating the lives of FOURTEEN's fallen brothers.
     The centerpiece of the service was a memorial that was erected to represent the seven men. It was simply an Ml 6 rifle with fixed bayonet topped with a Seabee construction helmet and seven dog tags draped on the stock of the rifle for each of the fallen men. A pair of dese11boots were placed at the base of the rifle. The memorial represented the Seabee legacy that these men shared, "we build, we fight." The memorial was placed between the American and NMCB 14 Battalion flags.
     Prien told the assembly, "Our seven Seabees died in defense of their country as they fought to bring peace to this region and fight terrorism." After speaking about each of the fallen men, Prien closed with, "These men loved what they did. They loved the Navy. They loved the Seabees. And they loved their country. But above all, they loved their families. I am very proud to have served with these fine men. They each served with honor, courage and commitment and were most assuredly respected by all of their shipmates. We all feel a tremendous personal loss in their deaths. Shipmates, you stand relieved. We have the watch"
Slaughter, who trained and traveled with these men throughout Iraq, spoke of the sacrifice of these Seabees; "their sacrifice has made us stronger," said Slaughter. "I will still gain strength from them. We will carry on....we will prevail ...for them, for their families and for the great country we so proudly  serve."
After Slaughter spoke, Steffner took the podium to speak about the men he had served with, lived with, grew with and helped train during the previous months. "We must bond together even stronger as one, so their effort doesn't go in vain.  We must continue to recover, grow strong and fight in honor of these men."
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NMCB FOURTEEN NEW MOTO & LOGO
After the DET realignments in FY14, the old logo and map depicting the NMCB Area of Operations was obsolete, since we now extend to North Carolina (DET 2014 -in Charlotte) and Virginia (DET 2914 in Virginia Beach).  We also have cross assigned in members at 78 other NOSC locations, extending from Maine to California.  The Battalion leadership reviewed the existing logo and moto, considering several design concepts.  The new logo reflects the global nature of the Battalion yet retains key images from our long history.  Specific design items are:
- The Compass Rose = Our Worldwide Capability as well as our Members across the entire US
- Guadalcanal 1942 and Iraq 2004 = our two most significant combat actions.
- The Seabee and a BEEP emblem = two iconic Seabee emblems.
- "Semper Fortis" = Always Strong, this Latin phrase is a favorite of SECNAV and one which certainly applies to NMCB 14!
-  Red, White and Blue Color Scheme = the colors of our great Nation!
I hope all current NMCB 14 Seabees and Veterans share our excitement in being part of the next phase of NMCB 14 history.  Shown below, in addition to the new logo, are all of NMCB 14’s historic logos.
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