Bernard Clark was drafted into the Commonwealth Forces in 1951 and served in the Korean War. The British Commonwealth Forces included Britain, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and India. When Bernard Clark was drafted into the military, he did not know where Korea was located. It took 4-5 weeks in a ship to get to Busan, Korea and then he went beyond Seoul by train. During his time at the front lines, Bernard Clark lived in the trenches, fought along side troops from around the world, and faced many new fears in his life. He suffered a loss of friends while in Korea and he had to deal with these losses as a young man. Bernard Clark was able to revisit Korea after the war and he compared his time there in 1951 to present time.
Bernard Clark went on a variety of patrols during his time in Korea. He calls these patrols "recce" (reconnoissance). "Recce" patrols consisted of 5 men and entailed going out to a point and returning with the intent to keep an eye on things in no man's land. Bernard Clark's listening patrol consisted of 3 men who went out into no man's land and sat in a location all night to listen for enemy movements.
Bernard Clark had to live in trenches near and on the front lines because there were not any shelters of any kind. The trenches were 6 feet deep and a fire could be made during the winter to stay warm. C-Rations were eaten most of the war and they included beans and tea. Bernard Clark took over for the Greeks at "Kowang San/Little Gibraltar" area near Hill 355 and he found many dead bodies left in the trenches.
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. Bernard Clark 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 Bernard Clark described the aftermath of this weapon.