Korean War Legacy Project

Ramon Mason


My name is Ramon Joseph Mason, born in Surry Hills, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia on 4th October 1931 (87 years old). I finished my secondary education at Sutherland Intermediate High School when I was 14 years old. Between 14 and 19 years of age I had a diverse range of jobs, too numerous to list here. I was working at Resch’s Brewery in Sydney when I enlisted on 19th February 1951 for a six year term. I served two tours of duty in Korea as an Infantry soldier, firstly in 3rd Battalion Royal Australian Regiment (3 RAR) and in my second tour in 1st Battalion (1 RAR).

I left Sydney Airport on 27th September 1951 with 12 other soldiers landing in Iwakuni Japan via Darwin, Manilla, Guam and Hong Kong on the 1st of October. I proceeded to Maryang San where I joined 5 Section, 5 Platoon, B Company, 3 RAR. We evacuated Hill 317 in November when the Chinese took 317 off the British King’s Shropshire Light Infantry, moving back across the Samichon River to Hill 261 occupied by the Americans. In December we moved into reserve at Wigeon Crossing. I was acting Section Leader when my Company returned to the line at Kama-gol. I finished my service in Korea at Songdo, departed Korea for Japan on 17th November 1952. I was only involved in one pitched battle on 4th September 1952 during my first tour. Otherwise my active service was mainly patrols, outpost and inpost duties

My second tour commenced 6th September 1954 arriving at Iwakuni Japan for pre-deployment training. I then flew to Incheon on 16th February 1955 joining Medium Machine Gun Platoon in Support Company, 1 RAR. I did a driving course then became a Machine Gun Driver. In June 1955 I was student of merit on a Signal Operator’s course and joined the Signal’s Platoon in Battalion Headquarters. Eventually I was appointed acting Corporal with duties consisting mainly of DMZ Patrols. I left Korea for Japan on 8th February 1956 arriving home on 16th February. I married my wife Elizabeth on 24th March 1956 whilst serving as an Instructor in E Company, 19th National Service Training Battalion at Holsworthy New South Wales until my discharge on 6th of June 1956. I was awarded the following medals for my service:

  • Australian Active Service Medal 1945-75,
  • British Korea Medal,
  • United Nations Medal,
  • Australian Service Medal 1945-75,
  • Australian General Service Medal for Korea,
  • Australian Defence Medal,
  • Korean War Service Medal and
  • Ambassador for Peace Medal.

I commenced a four-year trade course in Sydney, qualifying as a Carpenter and Joiner, a trade I was employed in until March 1970. I then became an Estimator at Trend Windows, progressing to Chief Estimator until I retired in November 1995. On retirement we moved to a small village, Sussex Inlet, on the South Coast of NSW where I played golf then later bowls. I have two hobbies; coin collecting since 1966 and writing poetry for the past 20 years.