Combat Camera Underwater Photo Team – A US Navy diver during underwater photography training off the coast of Guantanamo Bay, Cuba

The US employs divers in several branches of the armed forces, including the navy, army, marines, air force and coast guard.

United States Navy

United States Army

United States Marine Corps

The USMC Combatant Diver Course is located at the Navy Diving and Salvage Training Center, Naval Support Activity Panama City, Panama City, Florida.

United States Coast Guard

Currently, United States Coast Guard Regional Dive Locker Teams are assigned to Deployable Specialized Forces, full-time diving capability for three primary missions: Ports and Waterways Coastal Security (PWCS); Aids to Navigation (ATON); and ship husbandry and repair in remote polar regions. At these units, divers perform a variety of missions, from buoy tending to science support in the polar regions and security diving operations in ports around the country. The Units are located at the following: Portsmouth, Virginia Regional Dive Locker East (RDLE), Regional Dive Locker West (RDLW) is located in San Diego, California and Regional Dive locker Pacific (RDLP) which is located in Honolulu, Hawaii. Divers attached to Maritime Safety and Security Teams, have the unique capability of detecting and, if necessary, stopping or arresting submerged divers, using the Underwater Port Security System. It is the only special operations group that can arrest submerged divers.

According to Record Group 226 at the National Archive over 45 United States Coast Guard men were attached to the Office of Strategic Services Maritime Unit Operational Swimmer Groups (OSG). All OSGs had Coast Guard men, and several CG men were attached to UDT 10 in the Pacific after training with the OSS MU. LT John P. Booth (USCG) was Commanding Officer in the field of OSG 1. He was attached to OSS Detachment 101 and OSS Detachment 404 in the China and Burma and India war area where he and his team conducted reconnaissance and infiltration by sea, scouted enemy shoreline, and participated in combat swimmer and covert operations. These OSS Frogmen pioneered the use of unassisted diving techniques to include the Lambertsen Unit (allowing men to swim underwater for up to 3 hours), swimfins and the underwater compass. These men also experimented with underwater delivery systems referred to as the "Sleeping Beauty". Several of these Coast Guard/OSS Frogmen, including LT Booth, were awarded the Bronze Star for their "service with the Office of Strategic Services" by the Commanding General CBI. Although it is widely thought[by whom?] that the Navy UDT's were the first Frogmen, in fact it was the combined efforts of the OSS Frogmen (Operational/Combat Swimmers), USN Scouts & Raiders, and NCDUs/UDTs, that laid the foundation for what would later become the U.S. Navy SEALS. The first OSS Frogman, according to the Naval Special Warfare Foundation was USN Petty Officer John Spence who trained at OSS Maritime Unit AREA D on the Potomac River with USN LT Jack Taylor, who is widely considered the first SEAL. Over half of the OSS Frogmen / Combat swimmers were in fact Coast Guard men sought out for their advanced swimming, diving, and boat handing skills.[7]

As of July 2008 qualified Coast Guard officers and enlisted petty officers are permitted to volunteer for Navy SEAL training. 21 May 2010 two Coast Guard officers graduated BUD/S class 277 and moved on to further Naval Special Warfare Training; ultimately to join active Navy SEAL teams. RADM Gary Bonelli, Deputy Commander of the Naval Special Warfare Command stated to the USCG Web journal the following:

"Naval Special Warfare is proud to team with the nation's first U.S. Coast Guard officers qualified as U.S. Navy SEALs...During the past fourteen months, they have proven their mettle and have truly earned the right to be called our teammates. Cooperation among all services is a critical component of the National Maritime Strategy. Today's graduation is just one more example of the many integral ties that bind our maritime services. Congratulations to SQT Class 277!"[8]

United States Air Force

See also


  1. ^ a b Archived 31 October 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ "Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician : Special Operations : Careers & Jobs". Retrieved 19 May 2011.
  3. ^ "Navy Diver : Special Operations : Careers & Jobs". Retrieved 19 May 2011.
  4. ^ "Navy Diver : Special Operations : Careers & Jobs". Retrieved 19 May 2011.
  6. ^ "Navy SEALs vs. Delta Force: Who's Really Tougher?". Seeker. Group Nine Media Inc.
  7. ^ Guardian Spies: The Story of the U.S. Coast Guard and OSS in World War II
  8. ^ "iCommandant: Navy SEAL Graduation – First Coast Guard Graduates". 21 May 2010. Retrieved 19 May 2011.
  9. ^ "Pararescue". Retrieved 23 January 2022.
  10. ^ "Combat Control". Retrieved 23 January 2022.
  11. ^ "Special Reconnaissance". Retrieved 23 January 2022.
  12. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 23 November 2016. Retrieved 13 November 2017.((cite web)): CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)