Can Do!: The Story of the Seabees (Bluejacket Books) by Naval Institute Press
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When William Bradford Huie, a reporter for H. L. Mencken's American Mercury, signed up with the united state Navy in 1943, he obtained a commission as a public connections policeman in the obscure Civil Engineer's Corps Construction Battalions-- the Seabees. With the publication of Can Do! the list below year, Americans soon came to cherish the importance of the corps's job and the threat of their war time tasks. As understandable and entertaining today as it was some fifty years back, this account mentions to the story of the Seabees who landed with the Marines at Guadalcanal and Wake Island, Sicily and Salerno. Experienced noncombatant engineers, carpenters, steam-shovel drivers, plumbing technicians, common carrier, surveyors, and so on, they landed with the initial waves of American assault soldiers, bringing heavy equipment ashore to build roads, bridges, and airfields and repair service whatever they could. Often functioning under opponent fire, they incurred many different casualties and won the deep regard of everybody who entered into call with them.Huie's book is loadeded with perky accounts of the Seabees's achievements in the Aleutians, the South Sea islands, Europe, and Africa. An enthusiastic and persuading proponent, Huie composed guide not just to call attention to their accomplishments however to work as a motivation to others, and he typically has the Seabees tell their stories in their own words. Appendixes provide useful information, consisting of lists of casualties, award recipients, and Seabees' rhymes. An intro by Donald R. Noble is included in this new paperback edition.