Avery Maurice Creef was born on February 4, 1932, in Virginia Beach, Virginia. He graduated high school from Portlock High School in Chesapeake, Virginia, in 1950. He recalls not learning anything about Korea in high school. He did remember hearing about the war as a high school graduate and eventually enlisted in the Army in January of 1951. He attended bootcamp at Fort Polk in Louisiana and Fort Benning in Georgia before being sent off to Korean in June of 1952. After landing in Incheon, South Korea, he was taken up to Old Baldy at the 38th parallel and served in the 2nd Infantry Unit’s 12th Field Artillery Division. He caught malaria in July of 1952 while in Korea. He recovered and continued to fight on the frontlines until the ceasefire on July 27, 1953.
Basic Training at Fort Polk
Avery Creef, after enlisting in the Army in January of 1951, went to boot camp in Fort Polk, Louisiana. He reflects on his experiences and what he learned. He spent twelve weeks there and recalls countless marching drills and learning to shoot different weapons. He then went to Fort Benning, Georgia, for more training. He landed in Incheon, South Korea, in June of 1952.
Impressions of Korea
Avery Creef shares the image of Korea he has in his mind. He recalls seeing many mountains. He recounts landing in Incheon at dark but remembers the city being destroyed. He also recalls seeing Seoul on his way out of Korea and remembers it being destroyed.
Experiences from the Front Lines
Avery Creef speaks about his experiences on the front lines at the Kumhwa Valley, Old Baldy, and the Iron Triangle. He recalls fighting against both the North Koreans and Chinese soldiers. There were a few dangerous situations where he almost lost his life. He remembers constantly firing flares.
Living Conditions, Daily Routine
Avery Creef recalls never being able take a shower. He recounts never being dressed properly for the freezing winter weather. He slept in a bunker and ate C-rations. He shares how he enjoyed eating the pork and beans and adds that everything else tasted terrible. He remembers receiving packages from home periodically which would include better food options. He also remembers writing letters home.