Korean War Legacy Project

John L. Johnsrud


John L. Johnsrud, or J as he is known, was running his dad’s business when he was drafted in 1950 as a 22-year-old in the farming industry.  After being sent by troopship to Korea in March of 1951, he was sent up to fight along the 38th parallel.  As a part of the Intelligence and Reconnaissance Platoon, John Johnsrud fought many North Koreans, maintained communication between battalions, spied on enemy troops, and worked with the South Korean Army.  After nine months on the front line, his friend from boot-camp helped to get him a job in the Special Services group. This led him to more safety as he would be in charge of bringing rations from Inchon to the troops by truck.  When John Johnsrud returned back to the US in spring 1952, there was not a big parade since the Korean War was forgotten and no one really knew it was going on in Asia. He returned to work with his brother and he is proud of his service overseas.

Video Clips

The US Draft and Arriving in Pusan

John L. Johnsrud was drafted when we was 22 years old in 1950. It took 19 days to get from Seattle to Yokahama Japan by boat before heading to Pusan. He arrived in Pusan on a troopship with 5,000 other soldiers.

Tags: Busan,Fear,Front lines,Living conditions,North Koreans

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Reconnoissance Work, Weather, and Relying on other Warriors

John L. Johnsrud was part of a reconnaissance platoon that would maintain communication for battalions, work with the South Korean Army, and spy on the enemy. Hawaiian soldiers who had been in the war since the beginning were a major asset for John Johnsrud since they taught the new men how to protect their foxhole.

Tags: Panmunjeom,Chinese,Fear,Front lines,Impressions of Korea,Living conditions,North Koreans,Physical destruction

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Special Services

John L. Johnsrud shifted from the Intelligence and Reconnaissance group to Special Services with the help of a friend from boot camp. He was supposed to take care of movie stars, but none came, so he was in charge of transporting food and beer rations for the US soldiers.

Tags: Incheon,Panmunjeom,Food,Impressions of Korea,Living conditions

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