Lecture delves into first African American bomb tech

Master Chief Boatswain’s Mate Sherman Byrd was an expert in conventional, nuclear, biological and chemical bomb disposal. CONTRIBUTED

The History of Diving Museum will welcome author Cynthia Byrd Conner on Wednesday, Aug. 19 at 7 p.m. for a virtual Immerse Yourself presentation. Byrd Conner will detail her father’s life as the first African American explosive ordnance disposal technician in the United States Armed Forces, as depicted in her book, “Quiet Strong.”  

Master Chief Boatswain’s Mate Sherman Byrd was an expert in conventional, nuclear, biological and chemical bomb disposal. It wouldn’t be until later in life that Byrd Conner would find out all of the accomplishments her father made during his time in the Navy. Before reaching the rank of Master Chief Boatswain’s Mate, he graduated from Deep Sea Diving School and from the Naval School Underwater Swimmers in Key West in 1957.

Cynthia Byrd Conner’s book, “Quiet Strong,” is based on the life of her father, Sherman Byrd, who was an expert in conventional, nuclear, biological and chemical bomb disposal.

Byrd Conner travels throughout the United States sharing her father’s historical naval contributions and leadership skills with those in the military and intrigued with this history.  She is retired from the Department of the Navy, where she was a management and program analyst for over 25 years, working in ship maintenance and repair. 

The museum and Byrd Conner will be co-hosting the presentation live through a private Zoom meeting. Those interested in joining may email Emily Kovacs, community outreach coordinator, at [email protected] or call the museum at 305-664-9737 to receive the Zoom meeting number and password. Meet capacity is limited to 100 participants; registration closes at noon on Aug 19. For those who can’t participate or would like to share later, the session will be recorded and posted on the HDM YouTube page.

The event sponsor is The Surgery Center.

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