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
Arriving in Korea and Placement
Alan Guy recounts his arrival in Korea. He remembers bitter cold and a horrendous smell as Koreans had just fertilized nearby rice patties with human manure. He recollects a band playing rousing music upon arrival and being transported to a transit camp in Busan. He details his placement in a field hygiene section.
Ali Muzaffer Kocabalkan
Recounts From Post-Armistice Korea
Ali Muzaffer Kocabalkan describes post-Armistice South, Korea. He describes women with small feet from forced stunting. He also describes the suffering of the people from a war-torn land. People were starving. Ali Muzaffer Kocabalkan gave food to the people. However, this was against military rules. He had to spend fifteen days in military prison for giving food. He also discusses the taboos of the suffering of the people.
Thoughts on the Korean War Legacy Project
Alice Allen understands the importance of the Korean War Legacy Project and its potential impact on future generations. Her husband, Jack Allen, did not really discuss his Korean War experiences before the interview, and now he speaks freely about it. Alice Allen believes
that it is important that younger generation learn about the Korean War and the experiences of the veterans.
College, Letters, and Love
Alice Allen was going to college when her husband, Jack Allen, joined the military in 1948. During his time away, she earned a degree in education, and began teaching which helped pass the time while he was away. On leave in 1950, Alice Allen was married to Jack Allen and the two stayed in contact through letters while he participated in the Korean War from 1950 through 1951.
Injuries During War Never Tarnished Their Love
Alice Allen was on the home front when her husband, Jack Allen, was injured during the Korean War. Thankfully, he was injured on his right arm and not his left because he is left-handed. Even with an arm and leg injury, Alice Allen maintained her love for her Korean War Veteran.
Alice Rosemary Christensen
Discussing Her Family Military History, Message to Students, and Feelings on Women in Combat
Alice Christensen reflects on the many benefits serving in the military provided her--personally, professionally, and financially. She discusses her opinion on women in combat, as well as the long history of family members who served in the military, which has led to her passion for the military.
Women in the Military
Alice Christensen explains the concept of the "WAVES" in the Navy, as well as the women Marines, whom she worked with extensively while serving on a Marine base in North Carolina. She describes the rules for their uniforms and makeup. She discusses the camaraderie between the women in the two branches.
Receiving a Commendation for a Special Patient Case
Alice Christensen recalls a special patient she cared for during her time in Portsmouth. She shares how the patient had viral encephalitis and survived the condition, which was extraordinary for the time. She describes the treatment this patient underwent, especially the use of an iron lung. She adds she received a special commendation from Washington, D.C., for her role in the care of this patient.
Evacuation of Civilians after the Battle of the Chosin Reservoir
South Korean civilians wanted to escape so bad that they were willing to leave behind everything and jump aboard overcrowded ships to leave the war-stricken area. It was estimated that 99,000 civilians were crammed on two boats with the survivors from the Battle of the Chosin Reservoir with aid from a Chaplin who convinced the boat skipper to bring all the civilians to safety.
Meeting Marilyn Monroe
Andrew Greenwell describes meeting Marilyn Monroe at a USO (United Service Organizations) show while in Korea. He recounts making his way up towards the stage for the performance and positioning himself to obtain her autograph. He recalls persuading her to sign his book not once but twice.
Andrew Lanza was upset when the armistice took place in 1953 because he was fighting for every last hill against the enemy. The United States Marines were so sad to see his fellow troops die on the last few days of war. After going home, he was overjoyed to see his girlfriend, family, and friends again.
Inchon Landing: 15 Foot Ladders
Arthur Gentry and his comrades created 15-foot ladders to use to "land" in Inchon by scaling a 15-foot sea wall. The tide went out for 6 miles, so this was how the troops had to get ashore.
The marines climbed over the side of the ship and went into the boats. Rockets and bombardments awaited the Marines as they approached Inchon.
War Torn: 1950 Heungnam Evacuation
Arthur Gentry had an emotional experience when he and his fellow Marines were evacuated from Hamheung along with 100,000 North Korean refugees. As the reality of war set in, seeing the ships in the harbor the troops and the countless refugees were relieved to be rescued. Arthur Gentry remembered all the ships, his company straightening their lines, and the Marine Corps singing hymns as they marched forward.
The Dangers of Providing Supplies for Troops
Basilio MaCalino landed at Incheon in March 1953. From there, he went to Sasebo on his way to his station in Ascom City. When arriving there, human waste was everywhere and the smell was something that he'll never forget. When leaving his station in a truck to bring supplies to troops, he was shot at multiple times.
Everyone Looked Beautiful
Bernard Brownstein describes his arrival in Incheon and drive to his camp. He explains that the soldier driving him whistles at Korean women as they are driving. He explains that initially he didn't find the girl attractive but as time went on, everyone became beautiful.
Coping with Loss and Memories of Korea
Bernard Clark is still saddened by the loss of his friends while serving. He dealt with those losses as a young man in a few different ways. He also attended several concerts during his time in Korea, and he remembers a road march while on reserve which entailed a fiery mishap. Napalm drops took place during the Korean War, and he describes the aftermath of this weapon.
Medical Care for Wounded
Bill Hall recalls the challenges doctors faced in treating the wounded. He remembers their inability to treat everyone, so they frequently stacked the injured up and covered them with a blanket. He vividly describes one new, very green reservist who arrived in Korea having never touched a gun. This reservist was injured and later transferred to a navy hospital for treatment. He jokingly recalls how an army nurse declared that this young man would live.
The Plight of the Korean People
Bill Lynn describes the destitute conditions the Korean people lived in during the war. He has revisited Korea and compares what he saw during the war with what he witnessed when he returned. Now he describes South Korea as a paradise and is completely astonished with the way the South Koreans have developed their country.
Billy J. Scott
The Rubble of Seoul
Billy Scott describes civilian men, women, and children starving in the destruction of Seoul. He shares that he and other American soldiers had never seen anything like it. He recounts gathering c-rations along with other fellow troops and tossing them to those in need.
The Friendship of Two Strangers
Billy Scott describes his friendship with a KATUSA (Korean Augmentation to the United States Army) named Pyon during his time in Korea. He recounts the opportunity Pyon was given to pay a visit to his family he had not seen in roughly a year's time. He shares that American soldiers gathered food, clothing, blankets, and money and gifted them to Pyon to secure his family's safety. He adds that he will never forget him.
Home for Christmas?
Bruce Ackerman feared being surrounded by the Chinese in the Chosin Reservoir and had to endure the cold Korean winters, frost bite, and a near explosion close to his bunker. He thought that the soldiers would be home for Christmas in 1950, but sadly, he was wrong. Bruce Ackerman remembered the evacuation of 100,000 refugees during the winter of 1950 and that included North Korean civilians who were left homeless due to the invasion of the Chinese to support North Korean troops.
Bruce W. Diggle
Departure and Revisit
Bruce Diggle left Korea in 1954 by ship and went to London. In London, he met up with his soon-to-be wife who left for London when he left for Korea. They were married upon his arrival in London. He returned to Korea with a revisit program offered to New Zealand veterans. He is very appreciative of South Korea's efforts to bring veterans back and is impressed by the development of South Korea since the war.
Evacuating Heungnam, Off to Busan
Carl Hissman describes his experience at the evacuation of Heungnam. He remembers being the last one off of the beach. He recalls seeing many North Korean refugees and remembers the roads were so full of people. He shares they were able to save some but not all. He remembers seeing a blown-up village and two civilians frozen dead. After Heungnam, his unit went down to Busan and began pushing back up north towards Seoul.
Carl M. Jacobsen
Carl Jacobsen describes the living conditions he endured while serving. He remembers extremely cold temperatures and not being outfitted with proper winter gear. He recalls the K-Ration meals he ate and recounts a few meals he shared with locals.
Carl W. House
I Now Know Why I'm Fighting in the Korean War!
Carl House's attitude of "why am I here fighting this war?" changed from a free education to the protection of civilians. Carl House and his fellow soldiers were sent on a mission to find the enemy that was targeting US planes. While they were searching, they found women who had been tortured and murdered which instantly changed his perception of war. He would much rather fight to help the Korean people, than see this happen to his own family back in the United States.
Carlos Guillermo Latorre Franco
First Impressions / Primeras Impresiones
Carlos Guillermo Latorre Franco discusses his first impressions of the war and Korea. He remembers that he and others experienced real fear upon first landing in Incheon. During the first two months he spent in Korea, he recalls that they trained in modern warfare and took care of prisoners of war. He recounts the desperation of the civilian population, in particular, what women were forced to do to survive.
Carlos Guillermo Latorre Franco cuenta de sus primeras impresiones sobre la guerra y Corea. Recuerda que él y otros tuvieron miedo cuando llegaron por primera vez en Incheon y vieron lo que es la guerra. Durante los dos primeros meses que pasó en Corea, recuerda que tenían entrenamiento y los asignaron a cuidaron a los prisioneros de guerra. El se acuerda de la desesperación de la población civil, en particular, de lo que las mujeres se vieron obligadas a hacer para sobrevivir.
Thoughts of an Airman: Get the Hell Out Of There!
Charles Buckley's initial thoughts when he reflects on his experience during the war was to "get the hell out of there." He remembers his contribution to the country by helping various people, specifically the orphaned children. Charles Buckley would order from the Sears and Roebuck catalog and he would look forward to seeing the smiles on the children's faces. He also recalled the living conditions of all of the children and the civilians were able to obtain supplies they needed to rebuild their own country.
Charles Connally describes two psychological strategies utilized during the war. He describes connecting large speakers to the bottoms of B-52s and playing recordings of Korean women compelling the North Korean men to go home to their wives. He goes on to explain how the Chinese would fly planes over their camp at night, occasionally dropping hand grenades and bombs, in order to limit the amount of rest soldiers got. This the troops referred to as "Bed Check Charlie."
Charles Falugo, Jr.
Communicating During and After the War
Charles Falugo does not recall what he was paid, but he does remember sending his paychecks home to his wife, Rosemary. He recalls writing and receiving many letters back and forth with her during his time in the Korean War. He also talks about a Korean man that he befriended and somewhat adopted. He seeks to reconnect with him.
Horrors of War
Charles Fowler describes the devastating effects of the war on women and children. He shares that the North Koreans even used children as decoys. He also recounts images of those afflicted by napalm as being some of the most difficult for him.
Clara K. Cleland
Caring for Patients Upon Arrival
Clara Cleland discusses her arrival in Korea, approximately ten days after the Incheon landing. She shares her first assignment was to what she remembers as an old schoolhouse which was being used as a hospital to treat civilians. She especially remembers the children she treated there who suffered from burns and other injuries. She recounts how she and other nurses came under fire while attempting to help injured servicemen.
Nursing Duties and Medical Facilities
Clara Cleland describes her nursing duties prior to the Chinese invasion. She explains what the medical facilities looked like, the types of patients she treated, and the types of supplies they had. She recalls some patients she remembers well.
Clarence J. Sperbeck
Camp 1: Sustenance
When Clarence Sperbeck arrived at his first POW Camp (Camp 1-Ch'ang Song), Chinese soldiers gave each man a wash cloth and a bar of soap, but then they were instructed to go to the polluted river at the camp to take a bath. Korean civilians (women and children) stood on the bridge overlooking the river and watched the G.I.'s take a bath. Men were given little food and Clarence Sperbeck describes the pork they ate and how the Chinese would slaughter and drink the blood of the pig.
Letter Writing to Family and Fighting Men of Michigan
Clayton Burkholder wrote letters home to his wife twice a week. In the letters, he wrote about the different propaganda posters that he made. He also made releases for US newspapers using sketches of pilots that he drew. These releases were used to publicize the war in the pilots' hometown.
Colin C. Carley
I'm Leaving For War without Any Ties to Home
Colin Carley shares how he lied about his age to sneak into the role of a New Zealand soldier during the Korean War. He recounts being so sneaky that not even his parents knew where he was. He recalls that the most difficult part of the war for him was the cold. He describes how living and working with both the Australian and New Zealand troops was difficult but adds that they all were good soldiers.
Colin J. Hallett
Engaged During the War
Colin Hallett describes his engaged to Ina Everitt. Both Collin Hallett and Ina Everitt sent letters to stay in contact. Colin Hallett sent letters that spoke of daily and weekly events. Ina Everitt had a busy life at home that kept her busy and not just thinking of her fiancé.
After 16 months of training, Dale Schlichting was sent to Florida to join Attack Squadron 35. The only propeller aircraft that was still being used in the Korean and Vietnam War was worked on by Dale and this made his so proud. He was supposed to be dismissed from the military two months early, but he wanted to stay with his squadron to travel the world. If was left behind with 13 of this squad mates because Squadron 35 wouldn't be back to their base by the time Dale Schlichting would have to leave.
David H. Epstein
A Destroyed City
David H. Epstein discusses seeing Seoul during the Korean War. He recalls that the city was a destroyed, flattened area in 1953, and describes the South Korean people as being very friendly. He describes seeing women and children walking on the roads, and remembers not being able to communicate with them.
Recollections of Korea
Dennis Grogan talks about the sacrifice he made to serve in Korea. He explains how he received correspondence from his wife, saying his daughter had been born while he was in Korea. He discusses why he is proud to have been a part of the Korean War legacy and the issue of little acknowledgement of the sacrifices made by Korean War veterans.
Go to Jail or Go to the Marines
Don McCarty joined the US Marine Corps when he was 17 years old because if he didn't, he would have ended up in jail. With is mom's permission, he was sent away to Parris Island, SC for boot camp. After growing up in Chicago, Illinois and Kentucky, he said that he received the positive push in life that he needed once entering boot camp.
Fear on the Front Lines That Led to PTSD
Don McCarty was afraid every minute that he was in Korea. Even after the Korean War ended, North Koreans continued to surrender to the Marines by crossing the 38th parallel. Don McCarty feels that he has a better understanding of life once he fought in the Korean War because there were so many Marines that lost their lives. Every night at 2 am, he wakes up with nightmares from his time at war. PTSD is a disease that Don McCarty is still living with 60 years after the Korean War ended.
Donald L. Mason
A Wife's Perspective
Donald Mason's wife, Sheri, recalls what he told her about the Korean War. She says he does not like to share much about Korea because it makes him emotional. She reflects on her visit to Korea, when she and her her husband visited. She shares that the trip was wonderful, and she notes how appreciative the Korean people are. They both enjoyed the food and say they were treated like royalty. Sheri recalls that their hotel bed had a large sign on it saying "Our Hero". One of the most memorable events for her was visiting the DMZ.
Doris B. Porpiglia
Letters to Where?
No soldier could have imagined that their letters would be analyzed to determine their IQ. Doris Porpiglia was called aside while at Camp Cook and she was told to go through stacks of mail to determine which G.I.s had high IQs. If they had high IQs, they would be assigned certain jobs, but she didn't know what they were being assigned to.
Ladies Don't Do Such A Thing
Doris Porpiglia was asked how her family felt about her being in the military. Although her parents and immediate family were proud of her, her rich aunt told her that "Ladies don't do such a thing." Doris Porpiglia replied, "I am more of a lady than you'll ever be, and what I wear isn't going to determine the person I am going to be."
Women's Wartime Jobs
During the Korean War, women worked as switchboard operators and they drove jeeps for officers. Doris Porgiglia was given an aptitude test and she was qualified for over 150 types of jobs. She decided to go to Indianapolis to obtain the training for the Post Office.
Training For The Future
Doris Porpiglia explained that many women had standard jobs that most women had during that time period. This included telephone operator and secretary. She said the main thing women wanted from their experiences during the war, was skills they needed that they could use when the war ended.
The Women Just Sat There and Wouldn't Shoot
During her time in basic training, the women GIs were given the opportunity to practice shooting weapons. They were actually given a choice in the event that at any given time they were told they had to shoot their weapon, they should be ready. Doris Porpiglia said she wanted to be prepared, but most women just sat there and didn't attempt to try shooting at all, but Doris Porpiglia didn't understand their reasoning.
Doris Porpiglia tells a story that the most surprising thing about her job was some of the men that didn't know how to read or write, so they would quietly ask her to read the letters they received. The male GIs since didn't want others to know that they were uneducated. Doris Porpiglia felt sorry for them and she said that most of the men who had difficulty reading were from the south, but race didn't matter. She believes that it inspired her to become a teaching assistant when the war was over.
Letter from the President of South Korea
Dorothy Stanosek shares she received a letter from the President of South Korea in September of 2011. She comments on how very proud she was to receive the letter and is to be a Korean War Era veteran. She mentions her brother, Donald Sharp, served in the Korean War as a bombardier.
Sexism and Racism in the Air Force
Dottie Harris recalls the first time she ate at the mess hall at Connally AFB. She explains that she was the only WAF stationed at Connally at that time and was reluctant to go to the mess hall by herself. She describes walking in and, with all eyes on her and the room silent, she sat at nearest table and hurriedly ate her meal. She explains how she had inadvertently sat at a table where African American Airmen were also seated and was harassed not only for being a female officer, but for sitting with African Americans.
WAF Living Conditions on Base
Dottie Harris describes her living conditions while living in the barracks with other women. She explains that the barracks she shared with three other women at Connally AFB was entirely too small and only allowed for twenty-eight inches of open space between the bunk beds. She describes the open bay area of uncomfortable cots at Lowry AFB.
From Khaki to Air Force Blue
Dottie Harris explains that the book she is currently (at the time of the interview) writing entitled 1951 From Khaki to Air Force Blue is fictional but contains some factual events that she experienced. She shares photos from her time at Connally AFB. She recalls an incident involving the men on base playing a prank on her.
Dwight Owen discusses writing letters home to his girlfriend whom he married when he arrived home in August of 1951. He adds that his wife will not share the letters with anyone. He also speaks of his mother and how she must have been worried as not one but three of her sons were in the war at the same time.
Korea Prior to War
Edmund Reel recounts being stationed in South Korea prior to the war. He recalls the easy ability to see into North Korea from the mountains near the 38th Parallel. He comments on the peacefulness and shares that right before he left Korea, tensions started to mount.
Edward A. Walker
Rolls of Film and a Girlfriend
Edward Walker took photos of the Korean boy he hired to cut his hair and of Korean women carrying their babies on their backs. He sent rolls of film home to his girlfriend, Shirley. Shirley joined the interview and said she missed her boyfriend so much and she cried while he was away. Shirley also noticed that textbooks in New Zealand did not feature much content on Asia, so many people did not know where the men were fighting.
Night Patrol to Apprehend Migun Wianbu
Edward Brooks patrolled at night to catch American soldiers looking for US military comfort women & their pimps. They apprehended them on many occasions.
The comfort women and their pimps were turned into the Korean authorities and then the soldiers were disciplined for their illegal actions.
It Was About the Civilians...
Witnessing the conditions of the civilians firsthand, Edward Mastronardi was sympathetically moved by the Korean people. As the Americans advanced with tanks, guns, etc. through the Porchon Valley, they shot up everything. Knowing the Chinese did too, Edward Mastronardi witnessed so much destruction left behind. He told of a story about the Korean people dressed in white due to a funeral, and he noticed a woman lay, dying, and trying to still breast feed a dead baby. Edward Mastronardi was angry about the reckless killing of all people. It showed truly first hand what effect the war had on the Korean people.
Retreat from the Yalu River
Edward Redmond was surrounded by evacuating Korean refugees. They were leaving behind burned houses and their land. After fighting the North Koreans back to the Yalu River, Edward Redmond held their spot until the Americans started to retreat which surprised the British Army.
Edwin Durán González
First Impressions / Primeras impresiones
Edwin Durán González details his first impressions of Korea upon his arrival in the winter of 1951. He was most shocked by the cold he encountered. Furthermore, he explains that he could not understand how a country could divide itself in the way Korea did. He still remembers the fear he felt upon arriving and the relief that followed periods of rest and relaxation.
Edwin Durán González relata detalles sobre sus primeras impresiones de Corea a su llegada en el invierno de 1951. Lo que más le impactó fue el frío que encontró. Además, explica que no podía entender cómo un país podía dividirse en dos como lo hizo Corea. Todavía recuerda el miedo que sintió al llegar y el alivio durante los períodos de descanso y relajación.
Edwin R. Hanson
I Jumped In Front of a Torpedo Bomber to Mail My Postcard
Edwin Hanson reminisces about one occasion at Kor-'o-ri when a torpedo bomber (plane) came through to pick up wounded soldiers. He had a postcard that he wanted to deliver to his mother. He remembers the bomber sitting at the end of the runway, preparing to take off, and running down the middle of the runway blocking his takeoff and waving his letter. This postcard was among the many sent home to his mother, but he notes that most dealt almost exclusively with the weather.
Descriptions of Korea
Eingred Fredh describes the Korea she saw. She was very happy she volunteered. There were many refugees and people in bad ways. She worked six days a week in various wards at the hospital. In one ward she would care for soldiers. In another ward there were many patients had tuberculosis. As the war pushed North, away from Busan, she cared for more civilians.
Elbert H. Collins
What Happened to Injured Civilians and Soldiers?
Elbert Collins recalls what sticks out most in his mind- tons of civilians, including women and children- walking down the sides of the road. He describes a time that these civilians almost killed a man. As a medic, he often questioned what happened to the people that he treated, but Elbert Collins did get a letter from one Marine he treated.
Ernest J. Berry
Basic Training and Meeting Refugees
Ernest J. Berry describes the training as a medic at Waiouru Military Camp and sailing to Korea. He knew nothing of Korea. As he arrived, the communists were penetrating southward. He remembers streams of refugees traveling south as well. He explains his first impressions of Korean people.
Ethel Julia Archibald
Role in the Korean War Effort and Taking Care of Patients
Ethel Archibald describes her logistics role in the war effort while stationed in Japan. She expresses that her job was filling orders for supplies needed in Korea as well as helping out in hospitals after her work day was done to help support the lack of medical personnel. She remembers the hospitals being full of injured soldiers who had been evacuated from Korea and caring for them.
Incident During Rest and Relaxation Leave
Ethel Archibald recalls a memorable experience while taking leave with a colleague. She shares they were intercepted by Japanese soldiers who kept them under guard at a hotel for almost the entire week of their leave. She details how the soldiers finally realized they were approved to be in that location and let them go. She speaks of her fear during that situation.
Fermín Miranda Valle
Impact of War / Impacto de la Guerra
Fermín Miranda Valle was negatively affected by the war as he suffered from PTSD. He explains that he drank too much, and suffered from nightmares and sleepwalking upon his return. He attributes the difficulty in returning to normal life to the fact that he witnessed many soldiers killed.
Fermín Miranda Valle se vio muy afectado por la guerra ya que sufría de TEPT. Explica que por años bebía demasiado, sufría de pesadillas y sonambulismo a su regreso de la guerra. Atribuye la dificultad para volver a la vida normal al hecho de que fue testigo a la matanza de muchos soldados.
Finn Arne Bakke
Absorbed by the 8th US Army
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. Finn Bakke's 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, Finn Bakke speaks admiringly her, stating, "She was a very nice girl."
Home Front Hardship
Francis Bidle recounts the hardship he experienced upon his return home. He shares that he was turned away from several job opportunities simply because he was a Korean War veteran. He recalls claims of US soldiers at the time treating the women in Korea poorly and shares that many business owners on the home front where he returned associated all Korean War veterans with the claims. He shares that he eventually passed over the fact that he had served in his succeeding job interviews.
$97 a Month
Franklin Searfoss earned $97 each month while he lived in Germany in 1954. He used his pay to cut his hair, launder his uniforms, and support his wife. Otherwise, life was fairly stable, although normal accidents happened among the army soldiers.
Korea Revisit Program in 1986: The Evolution of Korea
Fred Liddell could not believe that evolution of South Korea in 1986 when he revisited through the Korea Revisit Program. He remembered Seoul train station completely in ruins along with all the buildings, but when he saw it rebuilt, it was a miracle. When he visited the Suan cultural center, Fred Liddell was able to share all of the changes that he saw from 1951 to 1986 including straw huts to homes and women plowing fields to mechanization. Fred Liddell was invited to visit the hut where the peace treaty was signed, but he felt extremely nervous because it was so close to North Korea.
Letters From Home as a POW
Fred Liddell received letters from his wife who delivered their baby right after he was released from the hospital, but before he became a POW. He received a picture from his wife and the baby and it was supposed to contain a religious medal, but the medal was taken. Fred Liddell was so upset that he screamed at the leaders of the POW camp and was punished by standing overnight with his arms outreached. He was thankful that another man, who had been thrown through the door, was there to lean on during those long hours.
Mostly Gunshot Wounds
Gene Peeples describes his treatment of the most common wounds he encountered as a medic during the Korean War. He explains his quick treatment of gunshot wounds before sending injured soldiers off to evacuation. He also describes another of the most common conditions they saw in the hospital, venereal disease.
The War's Innocent Victims
Dr. George Drake discusses his research on Korean War information found in various archival locations. He explains the repercussions of war on society. He describes the problem with poverty left in Korea because of war, and his passion for getting more information out about his humanitarian concerns.
A Life Abroad Before Korea
Dr. George Drake explains how growing up in poverty affected his life decisions. He describes his travels to South America and Europe before enlisting into the United States Army. He recounts wanting to be a part of the Army Corps of Engineers to study topography, but he was placed with Intelligence instead.
George Enice Lawhon Jr.
PTSD on Korean War and War on Terror Veterans
George Enice Lawhon Jr. was assigned to the Korean War for one year because the US government knew that men couldn't handle the mental stress of warfare. He recognizes the strain on present-day veterans when they are sent back to war zones over and over again because they'll need mental help. George Enice Lawhon Jr. and his wife knew that the veterans' hospital is going to need to take in a lot more veterans to make sure that they can handle the transition back to civilian life.
The Difficulty with Sharing the War
George Myron concedes that he experienced difficulty in sharing his experiences with war and that opening up was a slow process. He particularly remembers what he saw the civilian women having to endure as unfortunate, such as them lying down in gutters to deliver their babies. He recalls offering his poncho to one such lady as she gave birth there on the street.
George P. Wolf
Flying in the Berlin Airlift
George Wolf was a pilot in the Air Force during the Berlin Airlift after WWII. He provided food, but mostly coal to the people living in West Berlin during the Russian blockade. He flew the same path that the famous, Gail Halvorsen, flew during the 11-month blockade.
George W. Liebenstein
The Most Difficult Part
George "Bill" Liebenstein recollects the most difficult parts of his time in Korea. At the top of his list was being away from his wife and his business. He shares that he wrote her about every two days but was not always able to share what he was experiencing. He still possesses many of the letters he wrote her but, sadly, does not know what happened to those she wrote. He remarked that he also missed good home-cooking, playing ball with friends, and simply being free to do what he wanted.
Live or Come Home In A Box
Gerald Land described how long the journey was from California to Japan which was a total of 14 days. When he arrived in Yokohama, Japan, they were picking up more soldiers to take to Korea and he stumbled upon an old high school friend (yelling down from the top of the ship to the deck). They had some time to talk about why he was in Japan, and his friend said he had gone AWOL while in the Air Force because of a girl he wanted to be with in Japan, but was located and brought to trial. He was given a choice: go to Fort Leavenworth to serve a 4-year sentence or be sent to Korea with the 40th Division. "Live and your record is wiped clean or come home in a box."
Gerald Land described how he felt in December 1952 on Heartbreak Ridge in the middle of the winter. An Army loudspeakers would play Christmas carols and a woman would be telling stories back home of your girlfriend cheating on you with your best friend. He also recalled a time shortly after New Years when one of the guys started firing his weapon by making a series of shots that sounded funny and the Patton tank at the base of that mountain fired a round which it lifted their spirits. He said he felt very homesick.
Occupation and Missing Apologies
Gilbert Hauffels compares German occupation of Luxembourg to the Japanese occupation of Korea. Largely due to apologies from Germany, Luxembourg has been able to move past resentments from occupation, exchanging the negative term "Prussia" for the more expansive term "Deutschland" in reference to Germany and Germans. Although Shinzo Abe apologized to the Korean nation for occupation, Gilbert Hauffels notes that Japan falls short of apologizing for the use of Korean women as sex slaves. Having read much about Japanese atrocities throughout east and southeast Asia, he finds the lack of apology unacceptable.
Speaking About War: A Healing Process
Grace Ackerman feels that the Korean War Legacy Foundation is important because it allows the veterans to speak about their experiences during the Korean War. Students and future generations will also be able to gain knowledge from the interviews. Experiences such as the cold weather, being away from family, and personal experiences endured during the Korean War.
PTSD: Iraq and Afghan War Veterans
Grace Ackerman goes to the veterans' hospital in Syracuse, New York with the Auxillery group to help in the healing process. Her group is not officially there to help veterans from the Iraq and Afghan War overcome their Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome (PTSD), but they are there to listen when the veterans need it. Older war veterans have had time to heal and process their experiences, whereas the young veterans are still finding their way. Grace Ackerman believes that veterans' hospitals should be doing more to address PTSD in our young veterans.
Releasing Memories About the Korean War: Terrifying
Grace Ackerman was glad that she was able to be there for her husband, Bruce Ackerman, when he started to talk about his experiences during the Korean War, but it was terrifying to know the conditions that the veterans had to endure. Bruce Ackerman didn't start speaking about it until he was retired and able to have more time to ponder his time in Korea. Grace Ackerman recalled how most of the US didn't know about Korea when the war began in 1950 until the media started to cover the Korean War.
Returning to Korea and Supporting the US Veterans
Grace Ackerman was told by her husband, Bruce Ackerman, about the poor conditions in Korea during the war with mud paths, dirt roads, and huts. While visiting Korea during a church trip, she was able to see their new beautiful churches and the teenagers who were so courteous. As part of the Auxiliary, Grace Ackerman helps the veteran community by adopting a floor at the local veterans' hospital to make food, send gifts, and play bingo.
Growing Up in Greece
Haralambos Theodorakis was born into a farming family with 5 brothers and 3 sisters on Crete, Greece. While attending only a few years of school, he was not taught about Korea. He didn't even know about Japan or China, so his schooling was very narrow based on his home country.
Korea at the Beginning of the War
Haralambos Theodorakis left for Korea in 1950 and came back in 1951. Everything was destroyed when he arrived and the people were very sweet people. Korean civilians didn't have a lot of clothes to wear or food to eat. If Haralambos Theodorakis had extra food, he gave it to the civilians and he saw a lot of Korean children running the streets during his 8 months there.
Harold Bill Christenson
Harold Christenson remembers the fun he had with friends in Japan, going to Japanese bars and buying women drinks. He recounts one experience in particular where he gave a woman $20, which was a larger sum of money at the time, to buy drinks, and she did not return with his change. He also shares of his experience riding in a rickshaw.
Pusan Landing and Retreating to the Imjin River
Harry Hawksworth recalls arriving in Korea and docking in Pusan. He describes how African American United States troops were playing instruments as they arrived and creating a grand entrance. He shares how he, along with the Gloucestershire Regiment, traveled by foot up to the Yalu River in December of 1950 without spotting a Chinese soldier. He remembers being told he would be back home by Christmas and shares how he knew that would not happen after the US and British troops were forced to withdraw to the Imjin River.
Memories of Women and Children Hiding
Harry Olson reflects on one experience during the retreat from the Battle of Unson. He details his discovery of a cave during the retreat and finding eight to twelve Korean women hiding with their children. He recounts how the image of those women holding on to their children has haunted him. After this encounter, he remembers witnessing the destruction of supplies at the airport and being upset that they were burning food because he could not remember the last time he had eaten.
Refugees During War
Herbert Werner became very emotional as he described being an 18 year old seeing war first hand. He said witnessing the wounded, being under fire, civilians fleeing, and children affected by war made him overcome with emotion. He never saw as much fear as he did while there and it still gets to him even today. Herbert Werner made an instant personal connection with the refugees during the Hamheung Evacuation since he was an orphaned child himself.
Earnings for his Service
Homer Garrett briefly described, what few kids understand, which is how little soldiers were paid for their service. When he first entered as a Private First Class soldier, he started making $43.00 per month even while having a wife and two children back at home. When Homer Garrett came home, his highest earning was $130.00 per month which was much better than when he first entered the service in 1965.
Captured Submarine & Firing at the UN Troops
Homer Garrett described encounters with North Korean agents during his service in Korea. His unit captured a 2-man operating submarine that was trapped on a sand bar which carried 4 North Korean agents. That same submarine is now located in the 2nd Infantry Division Museum. The other close call incident involved their Military Police Jeep and a lady who was standing in the road. She ran from the intersection when suddenly shots were fired piercing the radio in their jeep.
Dedicated to Improving Civilian Lives
Homer Garrett never witnessed people in such despair not want help from their government, yet the Korean civilians continued to prosper with what they had. Korean civilians had a willingness to improve their lives. Homer Garrett felt the values of the South Korean people are lessons all Americans could learn from. He appreciated what he witnessed and respected Koreans' desire to succeed.
When Homer Garrett first arrived in Korea, the only means of transportation were ox-drawn carts for the wealthy, buses, and small taxis ("red birds"). The roads were only dirt roads that the Military Police shared with the civilians to transport goods and supplies. When Homer Garrett revisited Korea in 2007, (his wife visits often since she is from Korea- met and married her there and brought her back to Texas) he recalled the highway system in Seoul rivals that of our highway system in the United States, and that there are more cars on the road there, than there are in Dallas or Houston, Texas!
Howard Ballard discusses being trained to serve in Korea from 1947 to 1948 with the 57th Field Artillery Battalion, 7th Division. He recalls leaving Korea but returning later after re-enlisting. He remembers landed at Pusan at night to fight the North Koreans at the Pusan Perimeter on August 2, 1950. He recalls how he saw North Korean soldiers slaughter entire South Korean villages which made it difficult for him to speak about the war.
Training ROK Officers and Korean Culture in the Late 1940s
Howard Ballard recalls training officers for the Republic of Korea (ROK) before the start of the Korean War. He remembers how the ROK hated the Japanese because they had taken everything of value back to Japan during the Japanese occupation of Korea. He recalls training the South Koreans to become officers, shoot Howitzers, and become leaders before the Korean War began (1948). He describes aspects of Korean culture, noting the attention to respect and the practice of purchasing wives through the use of pigs.
Howard Street shares that his most difficult obstacle in Korea was keeping clean. He recalls it being tough to find a shower and good food. He recounts having to sleep on the ground in tents, even in snow as high as six feet and temperatures below 40 degrees.
Howard W. Bradshaw
Howard Bradshaw wrote to his wife every day. In the letters, he described the impact he'd made on the Korean people through his faith. Howard Bradshaw felt that these letters saved his life by giving him comfort and joy.
a Soldier's Wife Remembers Life Without Her Loved One
Laverne Bradshaw, just like Howard Bradshaw, spent every night writing letters to each other. She described how she grew a vegetable garden to save money while her neighbors would shoot a deer to help feed Laverne Bradshaw's family. Howard Bradshaw wrote about how he would help to feed orphans while he was away in Korea.
Ian J. Nathan
Small Boys, Heavy Loads, and Weather
Ian Nathan shows pictures of his time in Korea. One photo has a small Korean boy carrying a load supported by an A-frame pack. Other photos represent living conditions such as a tent covered in winter snow and a swollen creek blocking access to the latrines in the rainy season.
Letters to Mom
Ian Nathan did not have a girlfriend at the time of his service in Korea, but he wrote to his mother and brother. His brother helped him identify Venus from his observations of the dark night sky from his tent. He visited Seoul once during his time in the Army, but the city was in shambles due to the fighting that occurred there. Markets were set up, but most of the goods had been created from scavenged items. He contrasts his experience with pictures of modern Seoul.
Rules for Nurses
Inga-Britt Jagland describes rules that the US military assigned for nurses. Nurses could not take men into their bedroom. If a nurse broke the rules, the punishment was being banned from the United States. Members of the Swedish Red Cross were paid by the US military. Inga-Britt Jagland earned the rank of First Lieutenant.
Concussion Grenades and the Aggressive Chinese Army
At the end of November 1950, Jack Allen was wounded by the Chinese who overran the US troops. The Chinese had so many troops that they easily came over the hills. A concussion grenade took the nerve out of Jack Allen's right arm, so he couldn't use it and his knee was shot too. He was laid on straw and a tarp until a helicopter basket took him back off the line and onto Japan to recover. There were hundreds of wounded that accompanied Jack Allen, but he knew that he wouldn't be left behind because that's a Marines' motto.
Frozen Bodies and Paralyzed Limbs
Jack Allen was sent to an Army hospital in Japan and he stayed there for 7-10 days until he was shipped to a Naval hospital where Marines were supposed to be sent. When he walked in there, there were over 100 frozen bodies that lost arms, legs, and/or toes. Thankfully, a neurosurgeon performed surgery to help get feeling back in his arm while at the Naval base. Jack Allen was sent back to the US in February 1951.
Communication with Home
Jack Wolverton remembers writing letters home. He was not married and recalls relationships were tough to keep going while he was at war. He would correspond via letters with his mother, updating her on his day-to-day activities. She would return letters with stories from home. He recalls asking his mother, at times, to send back some of the money he forwarded home.
The Difficult Job as a US Marine
James Ferris shares that his assignment did not allow him to stay in Korea for a long time. He explains that his job had him flying in and out of the entire country. He shares he earned good money for the 1950s as a corporal and recalls how he sent most of it home to his family. He adds that once he arrived back home, he went on his first date with a girl he wrote to for over a year while serving in the war.
James Kenneth Hall
Sending a Letter Home
James Hall recounts how the Chinese wanted the prisoners of war to write letters home after the peace talks began in 1951. He explains how the prisoners were told to write about accolades of the Communist way of thinking and to put down the United States government. He recalls how he refused to write the letters and remembers a Chinese nurse helping him write a letter to his mother to let her know he was alive.
Begging to Join the US Army
James Low wanted to join the US Army after he graduated high school because he wanted to do his part just like everyone else did during WWII. There was a group of James Low's friends that went to volunteer month after month until there was a spot open. Finally, in February 1951, he was accepted into the Army, but had to wait until he was 18 years old to sign the paperwork because his mom refused to give permission to his 17 year-old son.
James Parker recalls writing letters home to his sister. He produces a folder containing a letter he had written and offers the viewing of a magazine he was sent from the States pertaining to Heartbreak Ridge. He utilizes the map to show the routes he and other soldiers took during the campaign.
Jean Paul St. Aubin
First Impressions of Korea
Jean Paul St. Aubin describes his first impressions after landing in Korea. He recounts the destruction, seeing few trees and buildings. He shares that it was hard to believe how poor the living conditions were for the Koreans as he witnessed malnourishment, naked children begging in the streets, and women working in the rice fields with their babies.
Letters During War
Jean Paul St. Aubin recalls writing letters home and receiving letters often. He remembers that he, collectively, received 3-4 letters from his family members and girlfriend each week despite being on the front lines and mentions that the mail service was good. He describes the topics of conversation on which most of the letters centered.
Maybe She Helped Spring Korea Forward
Jeff Liebregts shares his experience of saving a baby while walking with his friend after the Battle of Hoengsong. He describes walking along the road and all of a sudden being under fire. As they took cover, he recalls hearing a baby crying and seeing a child strapped to a mother who had expired. For fear that the child would die from exposure, he shares he extracted her and delivered the child to the medical station. When he sees people on the street, he wonders if any of them are the child that he saved. He hopes she was part of the generation that helped Korea become successful.
Joan A. Clark
Basic Training and America's Perception of the Korean War
Joan Clark recalls learning of the outbreak of the Korean War during basic training. She explains how she began teaching and her later Officer Candidate School attendance. She shares how upon training completion, she became involved in the pilot training program. She reflects on America's attitude towards the Korean War, recalling that many people did not understand why the United States was involved in the war.
Job Duties as Protocol Officer and Receiving a New Job in Europe
Joan Clark discusses how she came into her job as Protocol Officer in the pilot training program. She summarizes her responsibilities and recalls that when she left that position, they replaced her with three people. She recounts how she was sent to Paris, traveling with the Joint Chiefs of Staff and notes that she became Protocol Officer for USAFE (United States Air Forces in Europe), helping to oversee all of the airbases in Europe.
Deciding to Join the United States Air Force
Joan Clark recalls the circumstances that led to her deciding to join the Air Force. She shares how she was unsure of the medical field despite the fact it was the field she was majoring in in college. She recalls taking an aptitude test which told her that she was a "jack of all trades." She recounts deciding to join the Air Force because of her belief in aviation as a field which would become very important as well as wanting to do something worthwhile. She notes it was a way to make a good living.
Care Packages that Warmed Not Just Soldiers' Heart, But Also His Body
Joan Taylor was 21 years old when the Korean War was taking place. She lived with her parents while her first husband was away at war. Joan Taylor provided care packages for her husband that included warm clothes because winter military clothes were not provided yet.
Korean War Soldiers Returning Home
Joan Taylor's first husband came back home early from the war due to a death in the family. His father passed away and his mother was left to run a business, but she needed help. Joan Taylor's first husband was stationed as an Army Security Agent (ASA), so he did not participate in any fighting, but he recalled the bombs dropping and hiding in the bunkers at night.
Girl In The Picture
As his battalion moved from the south to northern Korea, Joe Larkin's battalion passed through several villages coming in contact with the Korean people. The civilians were very thankful for what the US troops were doing. One little girl saw a picture of Joe Larkin's niece in his pocket, and kept pointing at the picture, but Joe Larkin didn't understand. He called over an interpreter and he said the girl couldn't believe that his niece had a flower in her hair.
Joe O. Apodaca
Baking at Sea and Corresponding with Spouse
Joe O. Apodaca recalls experiencing bouts of seasickness while aboard the USS Henrico. He shares how severe weather and rough waters made baking cakes and other goods difficult. He remembers how the ship's crew graciously enjoyed the food despite any mishaps. He explains he had married a woman in the last year of his enlistment, and during that time, his wife lived in an apartment in San Diego, working for various government agencies. He recalls how hey kept in touch regularly through letters.
First Landing in Busan, Korea and Many Evacuation Flights that Followed
John Cumming landed on Busan's runway which was pitted with bombing holes. In order to load the casualties, POWs were used to assist the flight crew and once in flight, flight nurses held the injured to keep them from dying due to the temperature.
Life as a Flight Nurse and the Long Waited R&R
John Cumming would wear five layers of clothing to stay warm during the winter of 1951 and he learned the hard way never touch the skin of a plane otherwise, you lose your own skin. R&R in Tokyo as a young man was a blast and he didn't end up with any extra money.
John Funk offers an account of the 8076 Mobile Army Surgical Hospital (MASH). He describes the facility and the nearby area. He recalls soldiers being admitted with their uniforms still on as well as sometimes still in their sleeping bags and details the triage system utilized to determine who was tended to first. He additionally speaks of the role women played as nurses.
John J. Baker
Vivid Memories of Murdered Civilians
John J. Baker details movement from east of Taegu to a place called Ulsan. He recollects moving through the region with his company commander when they encountered the National Police and the Korean Army on both sides of the road. The commander explained that these people were South Korean Communists. He notes that much of his unit had been wiped out in Taejan leaving only 179 left in the unit. They returned to Taegu and onto Kumchon with the 19th and 21st Infantry. When they arrived, they encountered a gory scene along the roadside.
Can I Please Join the Australian Navy?
John Moller recalls joining the Australian Navy when he was seventeen with his parents' permission. He describes working in the supply branch aboard the HMS Sydney, which was an aircraft carrier with three flight squadrons. He shares that he on the aircraft carrier along with multiple Spitfire planes.
Growing Up in a Korean Orphanage
John Munro shares that he did not experience any dangerous moments while patrolling the DMZ in early 1954. He recounts how, as part of 1 Battalion, he went to Seoul to spend the day at an orphanage. He recalls his time spent at the orphanage and how he was given six children to eat with and play with throughout the afternoon.
Jorge Eliecer Cortez Medina
The Battle of Old Baldy / La Batalla de Old Baldy
Jorge Eliecer Cortez Medina provides an account of the Battle of Old Baldy. He explains that their unit had incurred heavy losses after two weeks of bombing and was attacked by the enemy who seized on their weakness. This battle was particularly brutal because Chinese troops outnumbered them ten-to-one. The following day, he and a handful of others volunteered to climb back up Old Baldy to recover the dead and wounded.
Jorge Eliecer Cortez Medina brinda un relato de la Batalla de Old Baldy. Explica que su unidad sufrió grandes pérdidas porque los chinos los bombardearon por dos semanas antes de la batalla y aprovecharon de su debilidad cuando los atacaron. Esta batalla fue brutal porque las tropas chinas los superaban en número diez a uno. Al día siguiente, él y una docena de soldados más se ofrecieron como voluntarios para volver a subir a Old Baldy para recuperar a los muertos y heridos que quedaron en la colina.
Jose A. Vargas-Franceschi
Emergency Leave from Korea
Jose A. Vargas-Franceschi describes his arduous journey from Korea on emergency leave. He notes how his leave allowed him to be with his pregnant wife in Puerto Rico.
José Guillermo Posada Ortiz
Most Difficult Moments / Momentos Más Difíciles
José Guillermo Posada Ortiz remembers the most difficult moments of the war. He explains that any time they were on the move it was incredibly dangerous as they were always met with mortar attacks. He remembers how they were ambushed one night, and his friend was killed. He wonders if he killed anyone as they shot in all directions as they could not see the enemy. Forever etched in his memory are the hardships of civilians and what they had to resort to in order to survive.
José Guillermo Posada Ortiz recuerda los momentos más difíciles de la guerra. Él explica que cada vez que se movía del sur hasta el frente era increíblemente peligroso porque siempre lo atacaban con morteros. Recuerda que una noche los emboscaron y mataron a su amigo, y ellos disparaban en todas direcciones porque no podían ver donde estaba al enemigo entonces él no sabe si mato a nadie. Las miserias de los civiles y lo que tenían que hacer para sobrevivir le han quedado grabadas en su memoria.
First Impressions / Primeras Impresiones
José Guillermo Posada Ortiz discusses his first impressions of Korea. As soon as they landed in Busan, they were transported by truck to the north, and he recalls the terrible condition the country faced. He was especially taken aback by the misery of civilians. Within hours of arriving to the front, he witnessed an American airplane shot down.
José Guillermo Posada Ortiz explica sus primeras impresiones de Corea. Tan pronto como aterrizaron en Busan, fueron transportados en camiones hacia el norte, y él recuerda las terribles condiciones en las que se encontraba el país. Mas que la destrucción, se acuerda de la miseria de los civiles. A las pocas horas de llegar al frente, el enemigo derribo un avión estadounidense.
Joseph De Palma
Creating The Demilitarized Zone (DMZ)
Joseph De Palma describes his experiences during the creation of the Demilitarized Zone and his interaction with the local Koreans who lived in the area along the 38th parallel. He describes the day a woman with two toddlers needed to be moved south to safety. He recalls that along the way she wanted to stop and build a fire and prepare a meal for her children but since that was not feasible, he gave her cans of food and she and the children sat on a rock and had a picnic.
Army Pay During Korean War
Josephine Krowinski did not recall how much she was paid while working during the Korean War as an Army nurse. She sent all the checks directly to Boston to her mother. Josephine Krowinski could tell that her mother needed the money more than she did, so that's why all her pay was sent back home.
A Nurse's Duty in Korean War
Josephine Krowinski did not know anything about Korea before she was assigned to go, but she always trusted that wherever the Army needed nurses, that's where she was to go. She always did what she knew best, how to nurse people back to health ever since she graduated from nursing school in 1942. Josephine Krowinski was never scared and she always felt prepared for anything.
They Took Care of Us
Josephine Krowinski described how well-protected she was by the Military Doctors she worked with. She always had G.I.'s looking after her. As a woman, Josephine Krowinski felt she was treated with respect and dignity.
Kenneth D. Cox
A Unique Meeting in Hawaii
Kenneth Cox shares a story of meeting a Korean waitress in Hawaii years after his service in Korea. He recounts that she lived near the hospital the 44th Engineer Battalion built near Teagu. He recalls exchanging a few memories and catching up on its present state.
Kenneth F. Dawson
Seoul Was a Dead Place
Kenneth F. Dawson describes the cruelty of Chinese soldiers and their murder of a Korean woman as they retreated from a battle. He recounts the destruction that took place in Seoul. He is proud to have served the Korean people and asks to join a group of veterans returning to Korea for the 70th anniversary celebration.
Lakew Kidane Goshene
Korea in 1954
Lakew Kidane Goshene describes the conditions of the country upon his arrival. He describes how Korean women would scavenge for wood. He also explains how his unit would share their rations with civilians. He is amazed at how different the Korean people's lives are now from then.
Laurence E. Johns
Laurence "Bud" Johns discusses joining the U.S. Coast Guard. He discusses how small the U.S. Coast Guard was at the time. He mentions the women who served in the Coast Guard, the SPARs. He shares that though he did not see many, they existed.
Selling Their Mothers and Sisters
Leo Calderon describes the atmosphere of South Korea after the war. He notes that some of the people did not like the American presence. He also describes the crime and poverty after the war. The people sold anything, including their mothers, sisters, haircuts and boot shining for cigarettes. Bars eventually popped up though American soldiers were not allowed to go beyond the MSR (Main Supply Rode).
Daily Life in Anti-aircraft Operations Unit
Leslie Fuhrman describes the daily living conditions and explains that it was fairly comfortable. He recalls having heat, cots to sleep on, a mess hall, and house ladies to clean the floors. He recalls earning two hundred dollars a month as a Second Lieutenant. He shares he sent most of his pay to an account back home but kept some money to spend at a small px, or military exchange, that was a few miles away.
They only had each other
Lester Griebenow describes how the unit of twelve men he was with had nothing but they got by with what they could. He describes eating C and K rations. He goes on to explain how they rigged a WWII Catapillar to help make their gun encasements faster and dam up a creek so that the soldiers could bathe. Their nude bathing led to complaints on behalf of some Red Cross nurses who were scandalized to see naked soldiers swimming. The men were told to wear boxer shorts from then on.
Civilians Digging In The Trash to Survive
As a naive young man who had never witnessed much beyond a small Midwestern town, Lloyd Thompson saw Korean civilians digging in the US soldiers' trash for scraps. The realization was knowing what the UN were fighting for. Lloyd Thompson recognized the hope to give Korean civilians a normal life again.
Marian Jean Setter
Basic Training and First Assignment
Marian discusses her experience at basic training and explains her first assignment in a general hospital near Modesto, California. She treated both medical and surgical patients. Many of her patients were injured World War II veterans who had been in the hospital for quite some time.
Nursing on Medical Evacuation Trains
Marian talks about her second nursing assignment, which was helping to transport World War II prisoners of war from the ports, where they arrived by ship, to hospitals closer to their homes. On these medical trains, she and other nurses would ride with the patients the entire length of the trip, and care for them, and assist them with any needs that they had. She remembers the men being severely malnourished as a result of their time in captivity.
Serving in Korea with the Army of Occupation
Marian discusses her next assignment, which was to Korea prior to the war. She served for two years at the 34th General Hospital, about twenty five miles north of Seoul, with the Army of the Occupation (later the Army of the Liberation). She remembers the hospital being housed in a former training academy, and says that they were lucky to have an actual facility, rather than living in tents. Her patients were all military, and had some Korean civilians as well.
Second Tour in Korea
Marian remembers her second tour to Korea in the 1960's, where she served as Assistant Chief Nurse at the 121st Evacuation Hospital for five months, and as the Chief Nurse at a hospital in Busan for seven months. She reflects on the difference in Korea from her first assignment, pre-Korean War to her second assignment, post-Korean War. During this assignment, she had much more contact with Korean civilians.
Treating the Rescued Hostages from the USS Pueblo
Marian recalls a notable experience while serving her second tour of duty in Korea. Upon their release by the North Koreans, she was one of the nurses that cared for the hostages of the USS Pueblo on Christmas Eve 1968. She and her fellow nurses gave each of them physical examinations, treatment if needed, and fed them a Christmas dinner.
Marjorie Elizabeth Cavanaugh
Knowledge, Firing, and Perception of the Korean War
Marjorie Cavanaugh discusses the extent of her knowledge of what was occurring in Korea and reflects on the slow communication of that time. She remembers her reaction to General MacArthur's firing. She comments on the American public's opinion on the role the United States played in the war and the difference in opinion compared to World War II.
Treatment of Korean War Veterans and Women Veterans
Marjorie Cavanaugh discusses the difference in the treatment of World War II veterans upon the war's ending, compared with Korean War veterans. She reflects on the impact of joining the American Legion after her discharge, saying that it gave veterans a sense of belonging. She details her experience as being a woman veteran of the Korean War, remembering that women in the military were generally looked down upon.
Perception of Women Veterans and Experiences with Sexism
Marjorie Cavanaugh shares her experiences as a woman veteran, recalling implied sexism through newspaper articles and radio programs/news. She provides a specific example that happened directly to her upon her attempting to enroll in college using the G.I. Bill. She notes this interaction was just one of many obstacles she faced as a woman veteran.
Impressions of the Treatment of Women in the Military
Marjorie Cavanaugh recalls the treatment of women in the military as being very good, saying that she had good experiences and never felt deterred while in the military. She remembers her treatment upon leaving the military was much worse than the treatment she received while serving. She discusses being treated fairly by men while serving but details the caste system between enlisted servicemembers and officers.
Thoughts on the Racial Integration of the Armed Services
Marjorie Cavanaugh speaks about the racial integration of the military, offering her thoughts and experiences specifically as well as other examples she noticed second-hand. She remembers the differences in opinion based on the region where the service members were from, noting that she believes the women from the South likely did not like having to take orders from their African American officers.
Literacy Would Prevail
Martin Rothenberg noted that there was a little girl he befriended who's mother worked in the wash tent and she would talk to him because she wanted to learn English. When Martin Rothenberg left Korea in 1955, he knew there would be a massive economic boom in South Korea because the majority of the people were literate. Plus, South Koreans had a desire to be educated and work toward the reconstruction of their country after the Korean War.
Seoul: A Sad Sight
Marvin Denton recalled the hardships many Korean people faced during the Korean War. Men and women yoked with long poles carrying heavy buckets filled with sewage (honey pots).
Groups of children ransacked the soldiers for anything they had (pencils, papers, etc.). Marvin Denton felt so sorry for the civilians in South Korea.
Mary L. Hester
Describing Flight School and Her First Incoming Soldiers
Mary Hester describes how she went to flight school, what they learned, and how she volunteered to go to Japan to help with injured soldiers. She becomes emotional when she remembers the first plane of injured soldiers and how her chief nurse told her they came to work, not to cry. She recalls the quick on-the-job training she received that day.
Discussing Her Duties as a Flight Nurse
Mary Hester speaks about her typical flight shift as a flight nurse, flying from Japan to Korea to evacuate injured soldiers. She discusses the types of patients and injuries they might see as well as describes the manner in which soldiers would be loaded onto the planes, depending on what type of plane they used on that flight. She recalls the amount of hours she flew as a nurse as well.
Volunteering for Korea
Mary Reid discusses why she volunteered to go and serve as a nurse in Korea during the war. She shares that she had lived a sheltered life prior to her service, and serving opened the doors of a larger life to her. She recalls feeling that she owed the United States Army and country for its willingness to invest in her.
Back to Busan
Mary Reid describes going to Busan by train. She provides an account of what her job entailed at the Army hospital compound in Busan. She recalls patients at the hospital being tended to and then sent back to the line.
Patients at the Hospital
Mary Reid describes the types of patients that she saw in the hospital. She recounts many soldiers having worms and treating them with medications. She elaborates on what happened to those too badly wounded to stay at the Army hospital compound.
Matthew D. Rennie
Witnessing Poverty and Devastation
Matthew Rennie vividly recounts the poverty and devastation he witnessed in Busan upon his arrival. He recalls the refugee camp there with hundreds of thousands of civilians living in cardboard boxes and children begging for food. He comments on their suffering during the cold winters as they possessed inadequate clothing and heating. He describes the countryside as he made his way up to Euijeongbu.
Maurice B. Pears
Life as a Korean War Soldier and Operation Minden
Maurice Pear recalls living in foxholes during his year in Korea from 1951-1952. He remembers patrolling through small Korean villages that were filled with only women and children. He recounts that during Operation Minden, his troops fought the Chinese for Hill 355, 317, and 227 while enduring many casualties.
Enlisting in the US Marine Corps
Mayo Kjellsen enlisted when he was 20 years old because he figured that he would be drafted soon. That was the culture, so decided to join the US Marine Corps and he was sent to Camp Pendleton in California. Without any prior knowledge about Korea, Mayo Kjellsen was surprised to see a Korean woman openly nursing her baby right near Inchon.
Caring for Orphans
Mehmet Esen describes how he cared for two orphans he met while in Korea. While he was in a hospital he met Chin Chol. He provided her with money for her schooling. He also provided for another orphan named Kerim. Kerim followed the Turkish troops everywhere they went.
One-Room Schoolhouse Education
Melvin Colberg recounts his educational experience in a one-room schoolhouse growing up in Illinois. He shares that learning and even teaching on some days were cooperative efforts between students and the teacher. He expresses that the experience allowed students exposure to an environment conducive to learning how to get along with others and learning how to adapt in preparation for the real-world setting beyond the classroom.
Impressions of Korea in the 1960s
Melvin Colberg recalls his impressions of Korea in the 1960s during his service, a perspective which centers on the years between the war-ravaged Korea of the 1950s and today's modern Korea. He recounts that infrastructure was still in the development stage as there were many dirt roads at the time and few factories present. No large farming equipment as water buffalo were mainly used in the agricultural setting along with a few rototillers here and there. Most people were still poor, living in one-room houses heated through the floor, and many civilians still wore traditional Korean clothing.
Cryptology in Vietnam
Melvin Norris studied cryptology in California. He mentions women of the WAVES being trained nearby. After cryptology training, he served Guam and joined bombing raids over Vietnam. His role was to intercept communications and send them to Washington D. C. He recounts an incident of another soldier sending Washington the wrong tape.
The Hungnam Evacuation
Merl Smith discusses his role in the Heungnam Evacuation. He shares that his ship saved over fourteen thousand people from Heungnam after being called to duty from Pusan. He details how the ship only had supplies for forty-eight men, did not have heat or toilet facilities, and had very little water. He remembers the Chinese blew up the port as the ship was exiting Heungnam and sailing with the Korean refugees for three days while bringing them to safety.
Finally Some Rest
Michael Fryer describes rest and relaxation at Inchon and Tokyo. He recalls that the Red Cross ran a center which allowed for both men and women from the British Commonwealth of Nations. He describes the Kookaburra Club, a recreation center located near Tokyo, Japan. He talks about food, the duration of the stay, and what they did while off duty.
Kitty Movie Experience
Kitty Curry, Monte Curry's wife, was not told a lot about what her husband was experiencing during the Korean War. Before a movie began, instead of previews of other movies, a black and white news reel would review what was life like for the US soldiers in Korea. This included fighting and bombs dropping on the enemy. Kitty Curry's reaction about the news worried her, but her friends and faith kept her going.
Morris J. Selwyn
Rude Soldiers at the American PX
Morris Selwyn's memories of his time in Korea do not involve any direct fighting during his service. Rather, he describes losing a fellow solider and friend to the Asian flu. Another particularly troubling memory is the way U.S. soldiers treated Korean women. While visiting an American PX, he disliked the way U.S. soldiers made rude demands on the Korean women. He has never forgiven the Americans for their behavior.
First Impressions of Pusan
Myron Toback describes what he saw when he first arrived in Pusan in 1952. He remembers that there were no brick buildings except for the rail station. Additionally, he recalls that there were a lot of mountains.
Neal C. Taylor
First Impressions of Korea
Neal Taylor never thought about Communism when he was sent to fight in the Korean War. He just went there to do a job. After he flew in, he noticed the lack of cars and technology. Sanitation conditions were deplorable.
Nelson S. Ladd
Dear John Letter
Nelson Ladd was very in love with a young lady and he planned to get engaged before deployment. However, after 6 months of being overseas, he received a letter from his fiance stating that she had met someone else. There was nothing he could do being 7,000 miles away from home, and by the time he had returned, she was already married to someone else.
Nicolás Cancel Figueroa
Baptism by Fire / Bautismo de Fuego
Nicolás Cancel Figueroa recalls how foolish he was for asking to be a machine gunner. He explains that this was an unwise decision because his commander told him that machine gunners were the first ones killed. He recalls the horrors of his first battle and losing the first machine gun. He laments these experiences and is not willing to fully discuss them.
Nicolás Cancel Figueroa recuerda lo tonto que fue por pedir ser ametrallador. Él explica que esta fue una mala decisión porque su comandante le dijo que los ametralladores eran los primeros que eliminan. Recuerda los horrores de su primera batalla y la pérdida de la primera ametralladora. Lamenta estas experiencias y no está dispuesto a discutirlas mucho.
Dealing with Guilt
Paul Welsh describes a time when he had to make a difficult decision. He recalls a woman and a young boy were on a bridge with a wagon that was carrying a hidden weapon. He explains that when the woman opened fire, he ordered his men to fire on them--a decision he still struggles with today.
Letters, Cookies and War
Phillip Olson tried his best to consume his time while he was not on the front lines working with large equipment. He wrote letters to his family about Korea. They in turn sent cookies and letters back to him while he was stationed there from 1952-1953.
Rafael Rivera Méndez
First Impressions / Primeras impresiones
Rafael Rivera Méndez shares his first impressions of Korea upon his arrival. He explains that he was unable to get a sense of the country upon landing on the beaches because he had to run for his life with his equipment. He recounts his impressions of civilians and their lifestyle when they were sent to different villages in search of guerrilla groups.
Rafael Rivera Méndez comparte sus primeras impresiones de Corea. Explica que no pudo tener una idea de lo que era el país cuando desembarco en la playa porque tuvo que correr con todo su equipo. Luego comparte las impresiones que tuvo de las familias coreanas cuando salieron a los pueblos a buscar grupos guerrilleros.
Ralph Burcham arrived in Busan in 1952. He felt that the scene was "heart wrenching" to see shoeless children running next to the trains in the hopes that U.S. soldiers would toss out food. Families were so poor and willing to do anything for food scraps.
Suffering All Around
Ralph Hodge notes there was suffering all around in Korea. He recalls soldiers suffered from frost bite and trench foot. He shares how showers were few and far between for soldiers on the front line. He explains suffering was not limited to the soldiers. He adds the Korean people suffered severely as well. He recounts an occasion when a little boy tried to sell his grandma to the soldiers for food or money.
Chute-Packing Races, C-Rations, and Poor Civilians
Ralph Howard discusses how he was scared until his parachute opened. He recalls not having to pack his own chute but adds that during training, they would compete to see who could pack his chute first. He remembers how General Westmoreland tried to ensure all men on the front lines received a hot meal once a day. He recalls enjoying beanie weenies, sausage, and hamburger from C-Rations. He notes that during his downtime, he would share some of his rations with Korean civilians as they were very poor.
Raymond L. Fish
Raymond L. Fish recalls the moment his ship approached land, and he saw the lights of the Golden Gate Bridge when he returned home in 1951. He remembers going right to the Army mess hall, and receiving fresh milk for the first time in three years. He explains having to serve additional time in active duty at Walter Reed Hospital, and how he later became a veterinarian.
Decision to Enter the Service and Basic Training
Rebecca Baker discusses her decision to join the Navy, and describes how it wasn't her original plan. After joining, she recalls waiting for basic training to start and later discovered from neighbors that she was being investigated by FBI so that she could obtain proper security clearance.
Arrival to Korea, Duties, and Hiroshima
Rebecca discusses her first assignment to a hospital ship where she would perform medical evacuations from Korea to Japan. She discusses her time aboard the ship, and notes a memorable experience when she went to Hiroshima. She reflects on witnessing lasting effects from the atomic bomb and expresses the profound impact that this had on her.
Daily Life Aboard the Ship
Rebecca Baker discusses her daily life in comparison to the television show "MASH", and notes that it was important to find humor in the sometimes difficult times. She recalls the food aboard the ship, as well as recounts a story about a fellow nurse's constant seasickness.
Richard A. Simpson
Tragedy of War
Richard Simpson describes the raping of a South Korean woman by an Allied soldier. He express his thoughts on the utter depravity of the actions of the soldier and his lack of respect for the human race. He describes this as the tragedy of war.
Richard Arthur Christopher Hilton
Richard Hilton describes the car accident that left him blind and without smell. He explains that he also suffered a broken wrist and shoulder as well as five ribs in addition to a punctured lung and a chipped knee. He explains that the greatest loss that resulted from this accident was the loss of his fiancee who did not survive the crash. He describes his mantra: "As well as you learn to live with what you have, you also learn to live with what you don't have."
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.
Helping a Father See His Son
The most memorable moment in Korea was when a young soldier from Iowa ran up daily for mail call to get information about his new baby. Every time they got mail, the young soldier received many pictures of his son bathing in the tub (always naked), he was so proud. The young soldier asked Richard Brandt when he was going home and he replied that it was within two weeks, but after speaking to his commander, Richard Brandt allowed the young soldier to go home in his place to see his son.
Richard K. Satterlee
Riots and Road Construction
Richard Satterlee describes his various experiences while serving in Korea. Students rioted in 1965 to protest Park Chung-hee's efforts to trade with Japan. Labor issues arose when Korean house boys went on strike for better pay. Meanwhile, Korean women hauled rocks used in road construction. In one tragic incident, North Koreans killed two U.S. soldiers cutting down a tree in the DMZ.
Robert D. Davidson
Most Difficult Thing
Robert Davidson shares a heartwarming story about assisting a pregnant Korean civilian. He recalls having been out with a fellow soldier working on a rock crusher, and on their drive back, he noticed something odd along the road. He recounts finding a pregnant Korean woman in the middle of labor and describes how they loaded her into the back of their truck and took her to a nearby MASH unit. He explains how the unit refused to offer her services until he spoke with the commander and urged him to do so.
Legacy of the Korean War Veterans
Rodney Ramsey was proud that the UN troops for pushing back the Chinese and North Koreans. He wishes that they could have made all of Korea non-communist, but life was better for the civilians in the South. The Korean War was named the "Forgotten War" due to it being called a conflict, not a war. After the Korean War, civilians on the home front did not see the war on television like they did for the Vietnam War. As the Korean War veterans came home, many people did not even know that they had left to fight in a war.
Rose L. Gibbs
Recalling Patients She Helped Treat
Rose Gibbs discusses notable patients she helped treat while stationed at the hospital in Osaka, Japan. She recalls the cold winters which resulted in seeing many frostbite patients being brought in, so many that the Army issued a statement to servicemen that they would be court-martialed if it was found that they were not wearing their wool socks.
Describing Other Duties as a Medical Technician
Rose Gibbs recalls having to spend time working with the blood bank and in the morgue. She remembers having patients who died of fevers and being issued warnings to make sure to wear gloves as they did not know what caused those deaths. She shares how she had to assist with autopsies from time to time.
Rudolph “Rudy” J. Green
You are on CQ Tonight
Rudy Green describes one of the most difficult times in his military service in Korea. He explains details about Koreans during the war. Rudy describes his job as CQ- Charge of Quarters and how the unknown of that night still bothers him.
Salvatore Scarlato describes the story behind a drawing he was given. He shares that during a revisit to South Korea in 1999, a high school student promised him she would create a drawing depicting the relationship of the United States and South Korea. He recalls the drawing arriving in the mail several months later and states that her drawing shows how, after sixty years, the United States and South Korea are still united.
Life During the War
Sangmoon Olsson describes her life during the Korean War. Her brother had a high position under the Japanese Imperial control and when the communists took over, they wanted to capture her brother. Sangmoon had to go into hiding for a total of eight months, interrupting her nursing studies. When the Allies eventually pushed back the Communists, Sangmoon Olsson was able to complete her nursing studies.
Sergio Martinez Velasquez
Entering the Military / Entrar en las Fuerzas Armadas
Sergio Martínez Velásquez explains the process by which he joined the Batallón Colombia. He shares he was initially not allowed to join the military because he looked younger than he was, and the lieutenant questioned his motives. He explains that it was only after he insisted on fighting that he was allowed to join the ranks of the other volunteers.
Sergio Martínez Velásquez explica como ingresó al Batallón Colombia. Él cuenta que inicialmente no lo permitieron a unirse al ejército porque parecía más joven de lo que era, y el teniente cuestionó sus motivos. Explica que fue solo después de que él insistió en luchar, que se le permitió unirse a las filas de los otros voluntarios.
Shirley F. Gates McBride
To This Day, That is Unfair
Shirley F. Gates McBride describes the training all of the women received at basic training at Fort Lee, Virginia, and the shock of encountering racism for the first time. During a trip off of the base, she shares she experienced segregated facilities for the first time. She explains how she was aware of the racial issues in America but did not understand it until her friend provided further explanation. The experiences involving segregation are some of the things she can never truly get over.
Cry Until You Can No Longer Cry
Shirley F. Gates McBride describes the first lesson she received at Valley Forge in Pennsylvania. Shortly after her arrival, she describes walking into a room and a sergeant separating her from the other soldiers. She explains that he instructed her to go cry in a room until she could not cry anymore. After following his orders, she shares how he explained to her that she would see a lot of death, and she acknowledges that this helped to train her to deal with death.
We Saw A Lot
Shirley F. Gates McBride discusses different types of injuries she treated while serving at Valley Forge. She describes how doctors trying to restore circulation for soldiers suffering from frostbite would open the soldiers' abdomen and place their frostbitten hands inside. She remembers one particular patient, who was a pianist, suffering from frostbite and how they tried to save his fingers. While working with some soldiers, she recalls they were struggling mentally and had to be in a special unit. She shares that their youth made some of them unprepared to deal with some of the experiences. Not only did she work with soldiers coming home from Korea, but she shares some of her experiences dealing with Korean women in the maternity ward.
Shirley Toepfer describes her basic training as well as transferring to Ft. Holabird, Marylind. This facility housed U.S. Army Intelligence training. Shirley Toepfer was based here for counterintelligence training or as she calls it spy training.
Leaving the Military
Shirley Toepfer describes the circumstances surrounding the end of her service. She began dating her future husband at Ft. Holabird. She got married and then she and her husband both left the service and moved to Illinois where she raised four children.
Photos from the Past
Stelios Stroubakis provides a glimpse of the past through several personal photos. He offers a picture viewing of his unit's Korean translator as well as photos related to a baptism which took place near the school he helped construct. He additionally provides a photo of the soldiers and staff who aided in the construction of the school.
What Did You Do in Korea?
Stephen Frangos, as a 2nd Lieutenant, was a platoon leader of a radio platoon. He describes the radio relay spots in Korea and what his platoon did to keep communications flowing, supporting the ROK army. He talks about the other types of radios they had. He remembers that his troops were all over, near the 38th parallel. He discusses having to fly often due to the remote locations of some of the radio relayers and adds that he survived three flight accidents.
Steven G. Olmstead
Writing Letters Home
Steven Olmstead talks about writing letters home. He mentions that there were not opportunities to write when on the front lines and that while he received letters from family and friends, he did not write back very often. He recalls a fellow marine asking his permission to write to his sister and shares that the marine and his sister were eventually married.
Taddese Weldmedhen Metaferiya
Ethiopian Donations Create an Orphanage
Taddese Weldmedhen Metaferiya describes donating money that opened an orphanage in Korea. Ethiopian soldiers had endured in battle. In addition, they also donated money to Korean people suffering during the war. The orphanage was able to help many Korean children. Korea has not forgotten about this donation.
Why Study Korea?
Thomas' wife, Andrea DiGiovanna, shared the stories he told her over the years. The two were married on October 10, 1993, and she recalls the stories he told her about the sea sickness he experienced on his way over to Korea. She also recalls stories about his father passing, as well as him finally returning from war and taking his first wife on their belated honeymoon. She also explains why it is so important to learn about Korea.
Thomas F. Miller
Basic Training and Korea During the 1960s
Thomas Miller went to basic training in Georgia and then he was shipped to Inchon Harbor to start his tour of duty. After landing, he noticed poor living conditions of the civilians which looked like America in the early 1800s.
Prior Knowledge About Korea
Thomas Nuzzo was attending Fordham University when he was drafted for the Korean War. Unlike most draftees, Thomas Nuzzo knew about Korea from stamp collecting and his schooling. Being sent to Korea was not scary he said because he found the Korean culture so interesting.
No Fear and The Invincibility of Thomas O'Dell as a Fifteen Year Old in the Korean War
Thomas O'Dell was not scared during the Korean War because he was only fifteen years old and he felt invincible. During the Battle of Pork Chop Hill, as he was dug in the trenches, Corporal Thomas O'Dell was confronted with his commander with his birth certificate. He was caught being a fifteen year old in the Korean War, but he was able to sneak back into another battle during the mayhem.
Korea: Unbelievable Differences Between 1952 to 2000
Thomas Parkinson shares how he saw unbelievable differences between the time he was stationed in Korea in 1952 to 2000 during his first revisit. He describes going back four times since 2000 and recalls how the advancements in buildings, technology, and bridges was astounding. He shares how the changes from the Korean cardboard houses to the multi-stored houses was a visible difference.
Fighting and Living in Korea From 1952-1953
Thomas Parkinson recalls fighting from the Kansas Line and the Jamestown Line while in Korea from 1952-1953. He remembers eating American C-Rations, sleeping in trenches, and writing letters home to his mom along with pen pals from England.
The Korean War Yielded the Most Difficult and Rewarding Moments
Thomas Parkinson shares that his most difficult time was when a Jeep landed on his legs with petrol and napalm spilling around him. He recalls how, even though it was such a scary time, he will never forget the Indian regiment that helped him recover in a field ambulance. He shares that the most rewarding moment was related to helping the Korean children in and out of Seoul and the surrounding cities.
Letter from Home
Tine Martin shares that he missed his mother the most and wrote letters to her often. He recounts one painful letter from his girlfriend while in Korea which he refers to as a "Dear John" letter and resulted in a breakup. He recalls having to censor the content in his letters and provides an example of one incident he was not allowed to write about due to its sensitivity.
Landing at Busan
Tommy Clough recounts how he knew little about Korea prior to shipping out on a five and a half week voyage to Korea. He recollects his first impressions of Korea, sharing that there was a stench in the air as they neared the shoreline. He remembers a United States African American band playing as they disembarked the ship and recalls South Korean women dressed traditionally and handing out apples.
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.
Vern Rubey comments on his return to Korea and speaks highly of the Korean people, praising their friendliness and support. He details his trip in particular and recalls the progress Korea had made since his departure back in the 1950's. He offers his opinion on Korean-US relations.
Victor D. Freudenberger
Victor Freudenberger talks about his impressions of the Korean people while he was stationed at Chosin Reservoir. He recalls the suffering of civilians and families being displaced. He describes observing a Korean woman washing clothes in sub-zero temperature at six in the morning and marvels at the resilience and commitment of the Korean people. He comments on the war atrocities committed by the Chinese against civilians he saw along the way.
The Costs of War
Vikram Tuli talks about the effects of war, and how the families of veterans from twenty-two countries were affected by this conflict. Generations will pass before that wound fully heals. He believes the deeper connections between countries such as education, commerce, and culture will help prevent these types of conflicts in the future. He reminds us to love thy neighbor and that we are one.
Women in the Military
Voelia Jeanne Thompson describes what is was like to be a woman in the service in her era. She particularly remembers difficulties with bathroom facilities. She also comments that women could not carry weapons at the time which required her to have an armed guard when she delivered top secret documents.
Walter Kreider Jr.
Growing Up During the Great Depression
Walter Kreider, Jr., shares that he grew up as an only child. He recalls his family experiencing hards times as many others did during the Great Depression, but he fondly remembers the love and support his parents, aunts, and uncles shed on him during his upbringing. He recalls the willingness of neighbors to help one another.
Landing in Korea and Military Entry
Walter Kreider, Jr., recounts landing in Korea. He shares that he was greeted by soldiers waiting to return home and recalls how they shouted words in an effort to frighten the arriving soldiers. He details riding a train up to the front lines near Panmunjeom. He backtracks and describes how he was drafted and his placement in artillery.
Warren Housten Thomas
Warren Thomas had difficulties communicating with family back home. Most soldiers in the Korean War used letters to stay in contact with family. It took about 4 to 6 weeks to receive a letter.
School, Letters, and the Excitement of the Armistice
Warren Middlekauf's military base was located near a Korean school that continued through the war. During the armistice of 1953, he was in Korea and was excited to send the US soldiers home. Throughout his time in the war, Warren Middlekauf wrote letters to his wife along with money to save for after the war.
William Arthur Jones
South Korean Villages
William Arthur Jones provides photographs taken during the war of Korean villages located forty miles south of Seoul. He describes how the South Koreans grew crops and prepared food and contrasts the area to its current urban development. He shares last photograph is of him using his military-issued hunting license to hunt pheasants in Korea.
Hey Bill Where Have You Been?
William Burns was very excited to come home after his time in the war because he missed his mother's favorite chicken dish. After meeting up with a friend back on the home front, he did not remember that William Burns went away to war due to the lack of media coverage. The Forgotten War was definitely evident in his hometown of Auburn, NY because WWII was so publicized and there were not a lot of information coming to the US about the Korean War.
The Honor Flight
William Steele describes the emotion felt when participating with the Honor Flight, a flight where veterans are taken to the nation's capital to be honored and celebrated for their service to the country. He recalls the warm send-off and all of the details that go into that day. In particular, he shares the tribute made by a ninety-four year old woman who was a retired B-17 Bomber mechanic that stood outside and saluted them as they went by her house.