Korean War Legacy Project

Tag: Dongducheon

Political/Military Tags

1950 Pusan Perimeter, 8/4-9/181950 Inchon Landing, 9/15-9/191950 Seoul Recapture, 9/22-9/251950 Battle of Pyongyang, 10/15-171950 Wonsan Landing, 10/251950 Battle of Chosin Reservoir, 11/27-12/131950 Hamheung Evacuation, 12/10-12/241951 January 4 Withdrawal, 12/31-1/71951 Battle of Bloody Ridge, 8/18-9/15/1951 Battle of Heartbreak Ridge, 9/13-10/15/1951 Battle of Jipyeongri, 2/13-151952 Battle of Old Baldy, 6/26-8/41952 Battle of White Horse, 10/6-151952 Battle of Triangle Hill, 10/14-11/251952 Battle of Hill Eerie, 3/21-6/211953 Battle of the Hook, 5/28-291953 Battle of Pork Chop Hill, 3/23-7/161953 Sieges of Outpost Harry, 6/10-181953 Armistice 7/271968 Pueblo Abduction1968 Blue House attack1969 EC-1211976 Poplar Tree Ax Incident1983 Langgoon blowup1996 Gangneung attack1999 Yeonpyeong naval battle2000 South-North Summit2002 2nd Yeonpyeong naval battle2008 Geumgang Mountain killing2006 1st nuclear test, 10/92009 2nd nuclear test, 5/252010 Cheonan sinking2010 Yeonpyeong Island bombing2013 3rd nuclear test, 2/122016 4th and 5th nuclear tests, 1/6 and 9/9

Geographic Tags

AnyangAprokgang (Yalu River)BusanByeokdongCheonanCheongcheongang (River)ChuncheonDaeguDaejeonDongducheonEast SeaEuijeongbuGaesongGangneungGeojedoGeumgangGeumgang (River)GotoriHagalwooriHamheungHangang (River)HeungnamHwacheonHwangchoryeongImjingang (River)IncheonJangjinJipyeongriKunsanKunwooriLanggoonMasanNakdonggang (River)OsanPanmunjeomPohangPyungyangSeokdongSeoulSudongSuwonWolmidoWonjuWonsanYellow SeaYeongdeungpoYeonpyeongYudamri

Social Tags

Basic trainingChineseCiviliansCold wintersCommunistsDepressionFearFoodFront linesG.I. BillHome frontImpressions of KoreaKATUSALettersLiving conditionsMessage to StudentsModern KoreaMonsoonNorth KoreansOrphanagePersonal LossPhysical destructionPovertyPOWPridePrior knowledge of KoreaPropagandaRest and Relaxation (R&R)South KoreansWeaponsWomen

Bernhard Paus

Establishing NORMASH

Lucie Paus Falck discusses how her father, and his cousin, worked with the Red Cross to establish a field hospital in Korea. They began their work in Japan buying supplies for the hospital beginning in April of 1951. The NORMASH hospital would open in July of 1951 courtesy of the Norwegian government.

First Patient

Lucie Paus Falck reads from her father's diary describing the first patient he treated. The patient was a 13 year old boy named Park who was severely burned in July of 1951. The boy was transferred away to Seoul but would return when Dr. Bernhard Falck engineered his return after hearing about him from a nurse who journeyed to Seoul to see him.

Letter to His Grandchildren

Lucie Paus Falck reads a letter that her father wrote years after his service to his grandchildren. In the letter, Bernhard Paus describes his reasons for going to Korea. He did not know much about Korea, but sympathized as he lived through Nazi occupation of Norway much like Koreans did during Japanese occupation. He describes the NORMASH hospital and the early use of the helicopter to transport the wounded.

Bjorn Lind

Working at NORMASH

Bjorn Lind describes his daily experience at the NORMASH field hospital in 1952. He describes the pace of about 60 patients a day that of course depended on the frequency of fighting. Even with so many wounded, the unit maintained a 1% death rate. He describes one patient with 40 shrapnel wounds. These wounds were the majority of the types of cases they saw. Bjorn worked on organizing the surgical room to increase efficiency by developing a better process for preparing and recovering patients making use of the limited number of operating tables in a better manner.

Return to Korea 60 Years Later

Bjorn Lind returned to Korea in 2014 after 60 years away having left service in 1954. He was surprised and impressed upon his return to Seoul. When he left in 1954, he remembers not being sure if South Korea would ever survive. He recounts how used X-rays would become windows in homes. Bjorn Lind is proud of how South Korea grew from a poor agricultural nation. He is impressed with their improvements and also respects how they treat veterans like him to this day.

Better than the Swedes

Bjorn Lind describes how patients moved from the aid stations at the front lines, to his NORMASH unit, and then to evacuation hospitals further south to recover. He discusses death rates at the front lines being at around 4% compared to his unit's 1% rate. Bjorn Lind talks about a group of Swedes who visited from their hospital located in Busan. With pride, he pokes fun at how his unit's accomplishments compared to those of Norway's national rival Sweden.

Charles Crow Flies High

Entering Korea in 1993

Charles Crow Flies High was sent to Korea for his first deployment in November 1993. He flew into Kimpo Air Force Base, and then he was sent to Seoul to get finished setting up to protect South Korea. He recounts that they were "locked and stocked" at all times from that point forward. His job was to watch for Kim Jong Il and his North Korean troops to make sure that they did not take over Seoul.

David Carsten Randby

Electrician for NORMASH

David Randby served as an electrician for NORMASH. Electricity was important for a field hospital. The electrical equipment was very rudimentary and required skill to keep running. He kept the generators running in times of great need.

Military Life

David Randby described conditions in Dongducheon. He provided details about helping with surgery at one point due to the many actions at the front. He described going on a trip from Dongducheon to Seoul and having to watch a video over how to act when out on leave.

Eilif Jorgen Ness

Why Norwegians in Korea?

Eilif Jorgen Ness explained why thousands of Norwegians applied to serve in Korea. He believed that some, like him, were adventurous while some did it to improve their resumes. He thought that the majority, however, were idealists who fought for the principles that Korean freedom represented.

MASH Got It Right!

Eilif Jorgen Ness explained how the television program, MASH, accurately displayed life in a MASH unit. He was amazed at how if faithfully depicted the camp set-up and living conditions. His one complaint was the show overstated the use of helicopters which only became a major part of delivering the wounded toward the end of the war. He also demonstrated pride at the speed his unit was able to get the wounded to the operating table.

Eleuterio Gutierrez

Living Conditions

Eleuterio Gutierrez described the living conditions while in South Korea. He received food from both the United States and Philippines, preferring Philippine rice over US C-rations. He noted it was much more comfortable staying in bunkers at Camp Casey than it was on the front lines.

Finn Arne Bakke

Bakke Met His Wife

Finn Bakke was an ordinary private in the 2nd and 7th contingents operating in the NORMASH field hospital. Although originally run by the International Red Cross, his unit was soon absorbed by the 8th United States Army. Staffed at first by Norwegian nurses and doctors, the hospitals began training Korean women just out of school. His future wife was one such nurse. When the NORMASH unit closed, she joined the Red Cross hospital in Seoul, working in a ward built to treat Korean children with tuberculosis. Pressed to describe his attraction for his wife, He spoke admiringly her, stating, "She was a very nice girl."

Service in NORMASH

Finn Bakke credited his experience in Korea to the first secretary-general of the United Nations, Norwegian Trygve Lie. Trygve Lie brought the plight of the Koreans to the Norwegian people, and Norway sent soldiers, doctors, and nurses to a field hospital to Korea. He explained there were three reasons he volunteered to go to Korea to work in a NORMASH hospital: he wanted to help, he craved the excitement of traveling to the other side of the world, and he needed money to begin his university studies. Although he was not trained as a nurse, he worked in a laboratory and was trained in basic first aid care at the field hospital.

Few Problems Treating Soldiers and Working at the PX after the Armistice

Finn Bakke reported there were few problems working in Korea following the armistice. While treating soldiers, most were injured due to land mines or traffic accidents. After about February 1954, few soldiers needed treatments as most patients were Korean civilians. He was transferred to the postal exchange (PX) and had no problems there except once being robbed of the goods he was transporting when stopped at a railroad crossing.

Frederick Schram

Potpourri From Around the World

Frederick describes his first assignment with the 25th Division in Dongducheon and his decision to stay in Korea. While in Dongducheon, he comments on the encampment being made up of people from all over the world. He shares vivid memories about the various groups and issues they dealt with while in the camp. Since the 25th Division was returning to Hawaii, he discusses his decision to join KMAG, the Korean Military Advisory Group, to work directly with Koreans in Busan.

George Zimmerman

Mess Halls and Lawn Mowers

George Zimmerman recounts how he and a fellow soldier "Downey" built a lawnmower for cutting brush in the compound. Their creation earned them an article in the military magazine "Stars and Stripes." He shares another welding job which included building a mess hall. George Zimmerman greatly respects everyone involved in the war, particularly the hardworking Korean people. He credits his military service for helping him grow up and giving him valuable experiences.

John Naastad

Hiring locals to get out of KP duty

John Naastad describes what KP duty is and why this work was often done by Korean locals. He discusses military pay and how soldiers had the resources to hire locals for daily kitchen service.


John Naastad describes what it was like to be stationed near the DMZ in 1956. He discusses reports of troop movements and tensions along the line. He also recounts a trip he took to see the Bridge of No Return.

Then and Now

John Naalstad describes the state of Korea during this time. He recounts a local Sunday school service he attended and the rough state of the church. Later, he contrasts that image with his pride in what Korea has become today.

John P. Downing

Dangers as an Infantrymen

John P. Downing spent 13 months fighting in the Korean War north of Seoul. During night patrols, he fought the Chinese and participated in ambush patrols. During his patrols, he suffered a wound to his right arm, but it didn't take him away from Korea.

Life as a Soldier on Hill 355

John P. Downing explained that life as a soldier was cold, wet, and hungry. He had limited rations and many of his friends died during his time participating in the Korean War for 13 months. Hill 355 was a hill that overlooked the 38th parallel and it was constantly under attack by the enemy. Artillery and mortars were incoming while John was protecting the hill.

Joseph M. Picanzi

I Was the Lucky One

Joseph Picanzi discusses the purpose of each type of patrol and different issues while living on the line. He emphasizes how he was a lucky one because he came out of the war without being wounded. Yet, he recalls one night where he came extremely close to being wounded during a mortar attack.

Lawrence Dumpit

Training and Protecting South Korea

Lawrence Dumpit went from bootcamp to Osan Air Force Base and went North to Camp Casey in Korea. This was located near Dongducheon and his duties were to destroy enemy tanks. For this first tour in Korea, he was there from 1997 to May 2000.

Prior Knowledge of the Korean War

From 2004 to 2008, Lawrence Dumpit's second tour, was filled with working with tanks on the ground. This was a change from the first tour in 1997. He didn't know a lot about Korea before he was stationed there, but he did know about the war because he learned about it during school.

First Impressions of Korea in 1997 and Korean Culture

Lawrence Dumpit was not a lot to go off base when he went to Camp Casey until he was given a one-week training about the Korean culture including the food, language, and civilians. The living conditions in Camp Casey were old WWII barracks because they were the oldest on the base and it was a lot better than the Koreans living in one room. He was paid 3,000 dollars a month.

South Korean Soldiers Work With US Troops

Lawrence Dumpit worked with South Korean soldiers, but they were not professional soldiers because they were drafted into the military. Therefore, many of the soldiers were not as professional as the US troops. The Korean soldiers made rank, but the US soldiers felt that they didn't earn it, so this started some problems with the US troops.

Trygve Jensen

Why Korea?

Trygve Jensen explains why he chose to go to an active war from his peaceful service in the Norwegian Army occupying Germany. At the time, he thought the experience treating wounded patients would be good for his paramedic career. He arrived during the final three months of the war and assisted with surgeries.

A Memorable Patient

Trygve Jensen describes one memorable patient who was severely wounded when his artillery gun exploded killing 7 of the 8 soldiers working it. The soldier had lost his hands and his legs. The paramedic on site used a flamethrower to cauterize his wounds and save his life. Later, the wounded soldier sent the unit a picture of himself back home with prosthetic legs.

Camp Casey Special Guest Star

Trygve Jensen describes attending 4th of July celebrations at Camp Casey in 1953. Besides lots of American beer, Trygve Jensen also got to see Marilyn Monroe. She was late to arrive and the anxious and beer-soaked soldiers greeted her by throwing tomatoes.