JAKE - The MkV Monument (Limited) Statuette
In 2006, “The Mark V Monument Project” Committee, formed and undertook the mission to obtain the necessary US Navy approval to fabricate and erect a ten foot tall bronze/granite military diver monument at the entrance to the Naval Diving and Salvage Training Center (NDSTC) in Panama City, Florida. The monument known as 'JAKE', was privately funded from sales of limited edition statuettes and was designed to stand on a granite base with each side of the pentagonal shape with each side displaying a bronze seal of one of the five services of the US Military.
During the period of 2007 to 2012 a total of 300 Limited Edition (LE) Bronze Statuettes were produced at a bronze foundry in California and sold to respective collectors all over the world. The committee was deeply involved in the aspect of the design to ensure the final product was technically accurate.
The 10 foot MkV Monument known as 'JAKE,' now stands outside the US Naval Diving & Salvage Training Center in Panama City Beach, Florida. It is believed to be the most visited monument in the State of Florida and is formally dedicated to all US Military diver graduates. The plaque on the granite base states; ‘Presented to Naval Diving & Salvage Training Center to honor those graduates of US Navy Dive Schools past, present & future who go down in the sea to work’. The monument celebrates the traditions of divers around the world who have given their life’s work to underwater ships husbandry, underwater construction, salvage of ships lost at sea, combat, and clandestine missions.
The monument was unveiled on 26th October 2012. Its unveiling was followed by a flurry of global emails and telephone calls from private collectors, wishing they had made the investment.
The last statuette to be sold in public was on the evening of the unveiling and it achieved $4200 USD. Since then, the value of the statuettes can only be assumed to have increased, therefore all those who made the initial investment not only own a unique piece of diving history, but own valuable asset. They are considered by many owners to be more valuable than a MkV diving helmet; due to the limited number made. They will remain a part of the US Military Diver's heritage for many hundreds of years to come.