Political/Military Tags1950 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 TagsAnyangAprokgang (Yalu River)BusanByeokdongCheonanCheongcheongang (River)ChuncheonDaeguDaejeonDongducheonEast SeaEuijeongbuGaesongGangneungGeojedoGeumgangGeumgang (River)GotoriHagalwooriHamheungHangang (River)HeungnamHwacheonHwangchoryeongImjingang (River)IncheonJangjinJipyeongriKunsanKunwooriLanggoonMasanNakdonggang (River)OsanPanmunjeomPohangPyungyangSeokdongSeoulSudongSuwonWolmidoWonjuWonsanYellow SeaYeongdeungpoYeonpyeongYudamri
Social TagsBasic trainingChineseCiviliansCold wintersCommunistsDepressionFearFoodFront linesG.I. BillHome frontImpressions of KoreaKATUSALettersLiving conditionsMessage to StudentsModern KoreaMonsoonNorth KoreansOrphanagePersonal LossPhysical destructionPovertyPOWPridePrior knowledge of KoreaPropagandaRest and Relaxation (R&R)South KoreansWeaponsWomen
Infiltrators Hiding in Barrels
Albert McCarthy recalls an incident that happened when he worked for the security agency. Intelligence came in that there were 12 North Korean infiltrators sneaking into South Korea through the Han River hiding in barrels. Once caught, the infiltrators were killed that night. He also recalls receiving intelligence of a school bus filled with infiltrators heading to kill the South Korean president. They also blew up at least two gunboats a week.
This Information is Classified
Albert McCarthy outlines his job responsibilities as a part of the National Security Agency. They had to assess whether the intelligence was covert or not. Many of the intelligence he was a part of collecting is still not classified information today. Due to this, he uses many metaphors to describe certain situations he was involved in.
Making Sure Communication was Always On
Bob Mitsou Imose recounts one 1954 flight mission to penetrate air defense systems in the western part of the peninsula. He describes his time in Korea as a communication electronics officer with the 5th Air Force beginning in 1967, working in cooperation with the 8th Army Division, to ensure communication always remained on. He details the military bases he visited in Korea as part of his duties during this period.
Cecil Franklin Snyder
Food for Korean Orphanages
Cecil Snyder, a clerk stationed at Osan Air Base, talks about delivering food to nearby orphanages. He describes collecting and delivering unused food, oftentimes used to feed the orphanages' livestock such as pigs.
Charles L. Hallgren
Back to Korea During the Vietnam War
Charles Hallgren describes being deployed to Japan in 1970 for the purpose of inspecting Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) units in Korea. He explains that Korea had tactical nuclear weapons which had to be inspected in various base locations on the peninsula. He describes his impressions of seeing a modernized Korea in 1970.
Chong Rae Sok
Inchon Landing and Osan
Chong Rae Sok talks about his participation in the Battle of Inchon Landing. His unit landed at Inchon on September 18, 1950 and fought their way to Suwon. One day later, he describes moving by foot to Osan and losing soldiers along the way, including a fellow KATUSA.
Edward A. Gallant
First Weapons Monitory System
Edward Gallant was assigned as a weapons monitoring repairman on a MSQ 28 System (Fort Bliss, TX). This 40 foot computer could provide 6000 miles of microwave radar which was 2 times the distance of the United States. Edward Gallant said they could see all the way to Russia. After the Cuban Missile Crisis, Edward Gallant said that the Russians who had pulled their weapons out of Cuba, gave the WMD to China, and the Chinese sold it to North Korea which is why they have access to the materials they claim they have. They gave 3 of these Weapons Systems to Germany, 2 Korea, and Edward Gallant operated one that sent over 256 missiles towards their target (mission led by Howard Hughes).
Camp Howard (near Osan) during the Cold War
Edward Gallant is a Korean War defense veteran because he protected South Korea starting in 1966. During his time in Korea, he was stationed at Camp Howard near Osan to work on the monitoring system for missiles that could reach across many countries. This 40 foot computer was watched over constantly just in case it needed to be used during the Cold War against communists.
Edward Langevin learned how to repair Hawk (Homing All the Way to Killer) missiles which are semi-active radar surface to air missiles. He spent 40 weeks in Huntsville, Alabama for basic training. While in Korea, he did repairs on the missiles near the DMZ.
Living Conditions at Osan Air Base
Gene Welch describes the living conditions in Korea. He remembers staying in a metal hut with concrete floors. While there was fuel for heat, it would get extremely cold in the winter. He also explains what the showers and chow hall were like.
Captured near Pyongyang
Gerald Cavagnaro describes how his unit was cut off during an attack by the Chinese. He describes running out of ammunition. He shares how he along with 100-150 other men were captured in November in 1950. He describes a march he took to what the soldiers named "Death Valley".
Gilberto Diaz Velazco
Recovering the Fallen / Recuperando a los caídos
Gilberto Diaz Velazco recalls the difficulty of the fighting at Hill 180 and the carnage of war. He recounts that they suffered casualties during the fighting but were not allowed to leave the dead behind. As a follow up mission, he was a member of the operation to recover the dead. He explains that he felt like bait because the enemy was waiting for them to recover the fallen and fired at them injuring his lieutenant.
Gilberto Díaz Velazco recuerda la dificultad del combate en el Cerro 180 y la crueldad de la guerra. Cuenta que sufrieron bajas durante la batalla, pero no se podía dejar atrás a los muertos. Como segunda misión, él fue miembro de la operación para recuperar a los
cadáveres. Explica que se sintió como carnada porque el enemigo estaba esperando que recuperaran a los caídos y les dispararon hiriendo a su teniente.
Half Dead or Captured
Horace Sappington describes his encounter with North Koreans and Russians a few miles outside of Osan. Ill-equipped and undermanned, he details the scene of a Major driving out in a jeep to meet and talk with the oncoming mass of North Korean and Russian troops. He shares that the enemy fired a cannon, blowing up the jeep and killing the major, continuing to advance upon their position. He adds that he was wounded during the fighting and was tended to by a medic who was killed shortly after during their retreat. He explains that over half of US soldiers there that day were either killed or captured.
Learning to Fly
Ivan Holshausen left South Africa as a Second Lieutenant. He recalls the South African government learning that near the time he was to head to Korea there would be a conversion to jets. He details the variety of aircrafts that he trained on in South Africa as well as later at K55 in Korea. He explains that the South African government was responsible for paying for any lost aircraft.
First Engagement: Task Force Smith
Jack Goodwin recounts his experience in Task Force Smith, the first group to engage with North Korean soldiers during the Korean War. He shares that they were severely outnumbered and ill-equipped with only four hundred or so men against roughly twenty thousand North Korean soldiers, having severely limited ammunition. He recalls remaining U.S. soldiers being forced to leave their position and walk during the night to a village where they were captured the following morning.
Life in Korea then and now
John Denning describes the living conditions of the South Korean people when he was there compared to when his son was in Korea more recently. He describes the people living in packing crates and huts with thatched roofs and the unpaved roads that were just mud and rubble. He describes the pictures he saw that his son recently took and being amazed at the vast developments and modernization.
Moments of Danger
John Rolston shares how he had to land on pierced steel planking instead of cement. He shares concerns he had about flying in certain weather conditions. He explains how the snow and rain were terrifying conditions that made his plane spin around. He shares the fears he had that he might not survive some landings or take-offs.
Close Encounter with a North Korean Pilot
John Rolston describes being a flight leader and bringing people to Japan and they were returning. He shares how he was very close to shooting down a North Korean pilot who went below the 38th parallel. He shares how he could have shot the pilot, but he didn't want to murder someone who was lost.
Life at Osan Airbase in 1954-55
John Rolston shares his fourteen-month experience at the Osan Airbase. He shares information about the F-86 planes there and the number of pilots that would be there. He states the weather was so cold that the fuel would freeze in the planes. He shares information about food during this time and missing his family. He explains the stability at the DMZ during this time since both the North and South didn't want to restart the war.
Enlisting in the United States Army
Marion Burdette's job in the U.S. Army was a Battle Commander's Traveler. He recalls being sent to Yokohama, Japan, in early June to prepare for the invasion of Korea. He recounts entering Korea from an L3T and then storming the beaches on June 27, 1950. He shares he did not know much about Korea at the time.
Battles from City to City Across Korea
Merle Peterson describes the difference between the 2.6 rocket launchers and the new 3.5 models. He explains that the rockets from the 2.6 launcher merely bounced off the tanks but the 3.5s were able to pierce the tanks, enabling them to take out eight of the eleven tanks that had attacked them. He goes on to describe meeting with the 7th division in Osan and from there moving through Seoul, Pyongyang, and onto the Yalu River until the Chinese joined the North Koreans and they were forced to retreat.
Paul H. Cunningham
Basic Training, Technical School, and Arriving in Korea
Paul Cunningham recalls sitting for seven weeks waiting for his assignment after basic training. Since he did not want to go to Germany, he volunteered for Adak, Alaska, but while training in South Carolina, the Korean War began. He remembers arriving in Korea at Pusan on September 20, 1950, and recalls setting up a radar station at the top of a hill in Pusan. After that, he moved to Osan, Incheon, and Kimpo Air Base to continue setting up radar stations.
Radar Sites in Korea and a Last Look in February 1952
Paul Cunningham set up a large radar station near the Kimpo Air Base, and that ended his seventeen-month deployment in Korea after spending two long winters there. He recalls leaving Korea with the image of poverty, huts, and dirt roads in February 1952. He also remembers the rail transportation office in Seoul as being all broken down and adds that he never thought Korea would rebuild itself like it has today.
Ralph M. Wilkerson
Ralph Wilkerson Recounts a Special Forces Mission after the War
Ralph Wilkerson notes the differences between 1951 and 1971. He returns to Korea in 1971 on a Special Forces mission called Freedom Vault while a Green Beret. This decoy mission included false radio traffic, false landings on the coast, and tried to convince North Korea of sending agents across the DMZ. The United States even dropped dummies made of dry ice that would leave evidence of infiltration but the "soldiers" bodies melted away.
Ricardo Torres Perez
Entering Korea as a Defense Soldier
Ricardo Torres Perez shares he did not want to go to Korea in 1977 since it was so far away. He admits he was nervous about the probability of war rising again. He recalls realizing the possibilities of war were still as high as in 1953 after hearing planes come in and out of Osan Air Force Base where he landed.
Radio Maintenance Specialty and a Civilian Encounter
Each soldier is trained with a specialty to strengthen the military. Richard Bartlett's duties were to keep the radio equipment working and operational as it was used to guide aircraft along the 38th Parallel. There was a lot of on-the-job-training. While stationed at Osan, Richard Bartlett encountered many civilians off base.
The Air Force's All-Korean Basketball Team Experience
Richard Bartlett played for the All-Korean Basketball Team while in the Air Force and stationed in Korea. He traveled to Seoul and played a variety of Korean teams. These experiences allowed him a chance to get to know some Korean civilians. The Korean teams were comprised of talented basketball players.
Legacy of the Korean Defense Veteran
Richard Bartlett believes that the defense veterans serve and fill the void after the Korean War ended. He feels defense veterans over the years have done a very good job keeping the North and South Koreans separated since the war. He wishes he had personally done more to help the Korean people while there.
Experiencing the Front Lines
Stanley Jones describes the differences he saw between the National Guard and the traditional Army. He shares an experience he had where officers were relieved and chaos and mistreatment ensued. He describes where the ballistic stations were located as well as a situation concerning a fuel dump in Busan.
The Journey to Korea from England
Tony White shares when he left Southampton, England, the ship experienced a steering problem in the Indian Ocean which resulted in hitting the rudder with a sledgehammer in order to steer. He remembers how the ship diverted to Singapore. He recalls they also journeyed to Hong Kong and then to Kure, Japan, after enduring a typhoon. He remembers how spent three weeks in Japan training and then went on to Korea.
The Significance of the 52nd Ordnance Ammunition Company
Warren Middlekauf's ship landed in Incheon in Jan. 1953 after a long trip. After loading a train to Pusan, he dropped off supplies and traveled to Taegu. While driving his truck, filled with ammunition, Warren Middlekauf went to Osan to unload boxes of weapons to supply Yongjong.
Most Harrowing Moment Aboard the USS Radford
William Beastrom describes his most dangerous day aboard ship. The USS Radford entered Osan Harbor to assist a cargo ship that was out of ammunition and was being fired upon. He explains that his ship was running low on rounds also but they were able to intimidate the enemy with what they had, leading to their cease fire.
William C. “Bill” Coe
Famous Task Force Smith
William Coe was a member of the famous “Task Force Smith.” He explains why the group was so well-known and important. He gives some details about what happened during that time, including taking a Russian vehicle.
Battle of Osan and Interaction with North Koreans
William Coe remembers his experiences at Osan with the North Koreans. He would have to shoot many North Koreans that were attacking, and he lost a lot of his friends during this battle. He was very lucky as a radio operator because he was not really hit.