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The Legacy of Seabee Betty

Courtesy story from Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 11 Public Affairs

PITI, Guam – Born in 1934 in the village of Yona, Seabee Betty established a lasting relationship with service members in the 1950s and was a temporary mother and friend to thousands of Seabees until her untimely death in 2003. Seabee Betty hosted welcome and farewell parties for each Seabee battalion stationed on the island and fostered a family spirit among the battalions and the island community.

 

Lt. Cmdr. Sterling Ingram, officer in charge, Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 11 Detachment Guam, right, addresses Seabee Betty’s daughter, Debbie Peredo Lujan, and Captain Stephanie Jones, commanding officer, Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Marianas as part of the annual Seabee Betty Memorial, June 20, 2018. (Phoot by CE3 Binh Le)

 

She hosted at least three events each year, cooking for and serving over 200 Seabees at a time. President Ronald Regan recognized her countless efforts in the 1980’s, naming her an Honorary Seabee and commissioning a display at the Seabee Museum located in Port Hueneme, California to commemorate her legacy.

Many high ranking officials from various commands on Guam were present for the ceremony and spoke on the selfless spirit that Seabee Betty embraced throughout her life. “We are forever indebted to Seabee Betty and the rest of the Peredo family for the many acts of generosity received by the Seabees and other service members during their time on Guam away from family,” said NAVFAC Marianas Commanding Officer, Captain Stephanie Jones.

 

Video: In honor of the 75th anniversary of the Seabees, Joint Region Marianas Public Affairs produced a special video to highlight the contributions of “Seabee Betty”, who served as a surrogate mother to thousands of Seabees stationed in Guam for more than a half of a century. The video tells the story of “Seabee Betty” otherwise known as Vicenta Chargualaf Peredo. Peredo, who passed away in 2003, changed so many lives as she took it upon herself to welcome the construction battalion members to Guam. Thanks for your service Seabee Betty!

 

“It was an absolute honor to be able to represent the men and women of the 30th NCR and pay our respects to Seabee Betty as we prepare to return to Guam full-time. Her kindness and support to the Seabees is well known throughout the community and we look forward to carrying on her legacy of putting others’ needs ahead of our own and looking out for our neighbors on Guam and throughout the Indo-Pacific region,” said 30th Naval Construction Regiment Chief Staff Officer, Commander Michael Carr.

The final speaker of the ceremony was Seabee Betty’s daughter, Debbie Peredo Lujan. “If my mother was here with us now, the amount of love and support she has received over the years from her beloved Bees would put the biggest smile on her face. I know she is smiling down upon us right now. Thank you all,” said Debbie Peredo.

 

Seabees assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 11, Detachment Guam, release balloons in remembrance of Seabee Betty during the annual Seabee Betty Memorial, June 20, 2018. NMCB-11 is forward deployed to execute construction, humanitarian and foreign assistance, and theater security cooperation in the 7th Fleet area of operations. (Phoot by CE3 Binh Le)

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