USA: Navy Divers to Help Clean Up San Diego Bay During Community-Cleaning Event


Navy divers assigned to Mobile Diving Salvage Unit (MDSU) 1, Sailors from Assault Craft Unit (ACU) 1 and civilians volunteered their Saturday to help clean up San Diego Bay during a community-cleaning event Aug. 27.

Operation Clean Sweep is an annual community event put together by the San Diego Port Tenants Association (SDPTA) where volunteers from the waterfront community come together to help improve the cleanliness of the bay.

“A lot of the trash comes from upstream and some of it goes back to World War II. We do this to benefit future generations,” said Gregory W. Boeh, SDPTA board member. “The main goal of the program is to take trash out of the bay and to bring awareness to the community and the vast resources the bay provides.”

Volunteers along the shore combed the beaches on Port Tidelands picking up trash ranging from old swim trunks to a hair curler machine and an English coin. Military and civilian divers cleaned the bottom of the bay finding trash like shopping carts, old bicycles and a motorcycle.

Of the more than 1,500 volunteers who showed up to help clean the bay in this year’s event, about 750 were from the Navy. Boeh stressed the importance of the Navy’s role during the event.

“While we have a commercial dive unit, the people that really have the skills to get under there is the Navy,” said Boeh.

“It was a fun experience,” said Navy Diver 1st Class Justin Cavitt, assigned to MDSU 1. “You get to hang out on the boat and do some diving.”

The event concluded with a performance from the Navy Band Southwest’s contemporary entertainment ensemble, “The Destroyers,” and a contest awarding the finder of the most unique piece of trash.

It’s a good community event,” said Chief Navy Diver Michael Hunt, assigned to MDSU 1. “It lets the people know that the Navy supports them. There is a lot of Navy here in San Diego, and we just like to leave a positive note on the community.”

One of the judges for the most unique trash competition this year was Rear Adm. William French, Commander, Navy Region Southwest, who chose the strangest piece of trash to be recovered this year, a motorcycle.

“We live in the community, we are the community,” said French. “Our Sailors, Marines, and our families that live here go to the same schools, shop in the same places, attend the same places of worship, and we compete on the same Little League teams. The more we work together makes this place just that much better to live.”

Source: navy, August 31,2011;