Korean War Legacy Project

James T. Markley


James Thomas Markley was born January 10, 1933 in Altoona, Pennsylvania.  He graduated from Altoona High School in June of 1950, the month that the Korean War started.  He was always interested in history, so he had a map of Korea in his bedroom as he was eager to participate in the war efforts.  He joined the navy in May 1952 in Pensacola, Florida and set off to San Diego, California for basic training. He never landed on Korean soil during the war, but his job was important to protect the water.  His naval company worked basically as minesweepers. They used various mechanisms to counter the threat posed by naval mines, making sure that the waterways were maintained and clear for safe shipping.

Video Clips

Swimming with Torpedoes

James Markley describes how the Navy and Air Force worked together after the war. The Air Force dropped torpedoes as they were looking for submarines. James' job was to swim out to the torpedo, hook a line on it, and sit on the torpedo while the sailors pulled the torpedo into the ship.

Tags: Fear,Physical destruction,Weapons

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My Job as a Minesweeper

James Markley describes all of the jobs that he had on the navy ship, the USS Sagacity. He was a senior life saving yeoman, and he did administrative duties as well. His ship had 4 officers and 37 crew members.

Tags: Living conditions,Pride,Weapons

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Message to the Younger Generation

James Markley gives students a message on the achievements of the Korean people. After the devastation of World War II and the Korean war, the Korean people have set a great example for the entire world. They have become a resilient nation of people.

Tags: Civilians,Impressions of Korea,Living conditions,Message to Students,Physical destruction,Poverty,Pride,South Koreans

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