Korean War Legacy Project

John R. Stevens

Bio

John R. Stevens was born in 1921.  He served in both World War II as well as the Korean War.  He was on leave when he first read about the outbreak of the Korean War in the newspapers.  He left for Korea on July 13th, 1950 and arrived on August 2nd in Pusan.  He describes leading his company at the Pusan Perimeter, Incheon Landing, the recapture of Seoul, and the Chosin Reservoir. He has revisited Korea on numerous occasions since his service and reflects on its transition. He also describes his recent work with the Korean War Memorial Foundation to establish a Korean War monument and believes it is important to honor the fallen so that war will not happen again.

Video Clips

Experience at Incheon

John R. Stevens recalls various experiences while at Incheon. He describes an incident when his friend, Lt. Lopez, attempted to throw a grenade into a pill box that was holding up the rest of the unit. He explains that Lt. Lopez was hit by machine gun fire and dropped his grenade, upon which he smothered with his own body to protect the other men around him. He goes on to explain the capture of fifteen North Koreans and the success of Lt. Lopez' sacrifice.

Tags: 1950 Inchon Landing, 9/15-9/19,Incheon,Front lines,North Koreans

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cAVn85c2pmI&start=1123&end=1305

The recapture of Seoul

John R. Stevens describes his experiences during the recapture of Seoul. He explains how his platoon captured many North Koreans along the river they followed into the city. He also describes the task of having to destroy the North Korean's weapons along the way. He recalls a particular incident when, in an attempt to break the stock of a gun, one of his lieutenants accidentally killed somebody.

Tags: 1950 Seoul Recapture, 9/22-9/25,Seoul,Front lines,North Koreans,Physical destruction

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cAVn85c2pmI&start=1315&end=1420

Wonsan Landing then on to Chosin Reservoir

John R. Steven describes landing in Wonsan and being greeted by the Korean soldiers before journeying by train further into North Korea to the Chosin Reservoir. He remembers capturing two Chinese soldiers and sending them back to battalion. He goes on to discuss Generals MacArthur and Willoughby's intense refusal to believe Chinese troops were in North Korea.

Tags: 1950 Wonsan Landing, 10/25,Hagalwoori,Chinese,North Koreans

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cAVn85c2pmI&start=1427&end=1632