Pritzker Military Museum & Library Debuts "SEAL The Unspoken Sacrifice"

Exclusive Photo and Artifact Exhibition Captures the Lives of Navy SEALs and Their Families

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"SEAL The Unspoken Sacrifice" opens May 15

'When people come to see the sacrifices of these team members and understand their way of life, I think the truth is going to come out. And it's not Hollywood, it's not make believe—this is life, and this is death.' — Retired SEAL Michael D. Ryan

Chicago, IL (PRWEB) April 17, 2014

On May 15, the Pritzker Military Museum & Library will open “SEAL The Unspoken Sacrifice.” The original exhibit features more than 80 photographic images of SEALs and their families by Stephanie Freid-Perenchio, artifacts on loan from the Navy SEAL Museum located in Fort Pierce, Florida, a rare book display from the Museum & Library’s collection, and an official U.S. Navy photo exhibit memorializing fallen SEALs from 2001 to the present day.

"Navy SEALs have received a lot of attention over the past few years, and this exhibit distinguishes itself because it explores the brotherhood between SEALs and the impact of their service on their families, without sensationalism,” said Kenneth Clarke, President & CEO of the Pritzker Military Museum & Library. “We are honored that this exhibit has been embraced by every part of the SEAL community across the nation.”

“SEAL The Unspoken Sacrifice” features photographs from Freid-Perenchio's book of the same name, which distinctively and intimately portrays the experiences of the very private Navy SEAL community. She received unprecedented civilian access to the lives of some of America’s most elite military personnel and joined SEAL teams throughout the world and stateside in the aftermath of September 11. Freid-Perenchio’s striking black and white photographs feature the themes of Brotherhood, The Trident, Love and Loss, Deployment and Homecoming, Training, and the SEAL Code.

“I am extremely proud to debut this exhibition in Chicago’s Pritzker Military Museum & Library. The exhibit captures the lives of these warriors and their families during a period in our history when more was being asked of them, more was expected of them and the stakes could not have been higher,” said Freid-Perenchio. “This experience had a profound impact on me as an artist, a woman, and as an American citizen. I am honored to share my work with others in hopes they can better understand the sacrifice these men and their families make every day on our collective behalf.”

To provide historic context to Freid-Perenchio’s photos, the Museum & Library will display artifacts on loan from the Navy SEAL Museum for the duration of the exhibit, including uniforms, equipment, and keepsakes collected from World War II through today. The Museum & Library will display items from its rare book collection on the history of the U.S. Navy, and an original short history of the SEAL program by Tom Hawkins, former president of the UDT-SEAL Association, will be made available. Additionally, photos and citations for the SEALs killed in action or in training since September 11, 2001 have been provided by the Naval Special Warfare Preparatory School in Great Lakes, Ill. (the first stop in SEAL training).

“When people come to see the sacrifices of these team members, and understand their way of life, I think the truth is going to come out,” said Michael D. Ryan of Lombard, Ill., a former SEAL and 1970 graduate of BUD/s Training Class 48E. “And it’s not Hollywood, it’s not make believe. This is life, and this is death—this is the cost of what we put out there. This (exhibit) is giving the city of Chicago—giving the metropolitan area and the Midwest—a chance to come down and look at this, and just walk through and say ‘thank you.’”

The new exhibit is part of the Museum & Library's ongoing effort to provide information to citizens and citizen soldiers alike on important military related topics in a compelling way. Opening events, scheduled for May 15-17, include: a fundraising dinner, an opening cocktail reception, book talks and panel discussions featuring retired SEALs and authors, and other programming for the public.

For more information on the exhibit and opening events, visit

About the Pritzker Military Museum & Library:
The Pritzker Military Museum & Library is open to the public and features an extensive collection of books, artifacts and rotating exhibits covering many eras and branches of the military. Since opening in 2003, the Museum & Library has become a center where citizens and Citizen Soldiers come together to learn about military history and the role of the Armed Forces in today’s society. The Museum & Library is a non-partisan, non-government information center supported by its members and donors.



"SEAL The Unspoken Sacrifice" "SEAL The Unspoken Sacrifice"

Exclusive photo and artifact exhibition captures the lives of Navy SEALs and their families