Dr. Jeffrey M. Leatherwood
Associate Professor of History for American Military University
Every first week in May, the U.S. Navy Explosive Ordnance Disposal School (NAVSCOLEOD) holds a wreath-laying ceremony at the National EOD Monument. Usually, this ceremony held at Eglin AFB, Florida involves the addition of names of men and women recently killed in the line of duty. However, with the passing of the World War II and Korea generation, historical researchers are bringing to light new names from old conflicts.
For those unacquainted with Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD), it has evolved beyond the simple label of “bomb disposal,” as designated in World War II. Today, EOD is considered an important part of military sustenance, rendering its technical services in cases ranging from faulty ordnance to the improvised explosive devices (IEDs) that often appear in the Global War on Terror. All four military service branches have EOD detachments, and the Navy EOD School is a joint training facility.