Korean War Legacy Project

Gene Spicer

Bio

Gene Spicer was born in 1930 in Indiana. After high school, Gene Spicer worked on the family farm. When the Korean War broke out, Gene Spicer and a friend decided to enlist.  They were sent to Fort Breckenridge for training with the “Screaming Eagles” of the 101st airborne. In Korea, he was reassigned as a radio signal man with the 24th Infantry Division. He saw combat near Seoul and Wonsan.  After the War, Gene Spicer enlisted with the National Guard and used the GI Bill to attend the University of Kentucky. He was eventually offered a commission with the Indiana National Guard and continued with that career for over 20 years retiring as a Brigadier General in 2004.  Gene Spicer has revisited Korea two times — once in 2004 on a Veterans’ revisit trip and once in 2014 on a 15 day trip to try and retrace the route he took as a young soldier in Korea.

Video Clips

Young and Dumb

Gene Spicer explains why he wanted to join the military. Not thinking about the dangers, Gene looked forward to seeing things outside of Indiana.

Tags: Wonsan,Home front

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qPcdSLyncYg&start=218&end=305

Empathy for the Dead

Gene Spicer recounts his most difficult memories from Korea. The image of a dead Chinese soldier stuck in his mind. It reminds him of the reality of war and its consequences for families and the young.

Tags: Wonsan,Chinese,Front lines

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qPcdSLyncYg&start=1118&end=1266

Revisit

Gene Spicer describes his two revisits to Korea. His first trip reminded him why he fought, to create the country he was now visiting. On his second trip, he retraced his steps from 1951. The contrast between the North and South from the DMZ and from the air moved him.

Tags: Seoul,Wonsan,Impressions of Korea,Modern Korea,North Koreans,Pride

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qPcdSLyncYg&start=1285&end=1440