'I'll try it, Sir; I'll do my best.'
Lieutenant William Barker Cushing's words to the Assistant Secretary of the Navy Fox before his successful sinking of the CSS Albemarle.
All through the civil war William B. Cushing distinguished himself by signal acts of perilous adventure. He combined coolness and sound judgment with a courage unsurpassed, and on all occasions proved himself a valuable officer. (From his obituary in the New York Times).
Though SEALs did not exist during the Civil War, Cushing has often been called 'the first Navy SEAL.