Korean War Legacy Project

Harry McNeilly


Harry McNeilly was a soldier in the British Army who specialized in motor transportation. His experiences in the war were to help in connecting the civilians back home to the frontlines in Korea. Through his efforts to escort correspondents to the frontlines, he did just that. In the first clip, Harry McNeilly recalls the patriarchal relationship he formed with a Korean orphan while in Seoul.  The second clip describes  the huge change between the Korea that Harry McNeilly saw during the war to the Korea that has re-emerged after the war. In the last clip Harry McNeilly details his duties and routine in taking correspondents of various nations to the frontlines.

Video Clips

Becoming a War-Time Father

In this clip, Harry McNeilly recounts his brief time in Seoul during the war. In a truly unique war story McNeilly talks about building a strong relationship with a young, dutiful Korean orphan while staying in Seoul for a few months. The boy, who was "smart as a button", was left without a family during the Korean War and latched onto Harry McNeilly who tried to look after him.

Tags: Seoul,Impressions of Korea,Orphanage,Physical destruction

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Korea then Versus Korea now

Harry McNeilly recalls the Korea he saw during the war to the Korea he saw revisiting over forty years later. During the war he remembers a Korea had been made barren by being stripped of all its trees. Upon revisiting he was astounded by the development Korea had achieved in such a short time. Even more astounding was the respectful reception he received as a Korean War veteran.

Tags: Seoul,Impressions of Korea,Physical destruction,Pride

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The Power of a Map

Harry McNeilly's speciality during the war was Motor Transport. For the majority of the war, his job was to escort correspondent's from various countries to the front-lines. Harry McNeilly jokes about his ability to take people where they needed to go without ever studying Korean geography.

Tags: Busan,Front lines,Pride,Prior knowledge of Korea

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