Korean War Legacy Project

William “Bill” Hoyle


William “Bill” Hoyle, who currently resides in Waxahachie, TX, was born on July 2, 1928 in Holyoke, Massachusetts. As a Sergeant of the 1st Marine Shore Party Battalion a.k.a. Red Dot Raiders, he and his men were assigned to set up landing perimeters (clearing/paving roads), medical and ammunition, as well as help the Navy with the LCVPs and LSTs on the beaches using bulldozers, cranes, and other heavy equipment. Although his engineering corps were behind the artillery throughout most of the war, they never lost sight of knowing they could easily be sent to the front lines if they were needed. Bill was the first Marine in his family and acceptance into the Corps was his biggest wish.

Video Clips

Sleeping Bags Unzipped or Die

William Hoyle explains he was given the nickname "The Most Horseshit NCO" due to his ordering his men to sleep with their sleeping bags unzipped. Word got around that an Army unit slept with their sleeping bags zipped up and the enemy came in without even having to fire a gun and killed everyone in that unit with a bayonet. He explains that his men slept with their M1 at their sides and a 50/50 two hour watch.

Tags: Living conditions,Weapons

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Don't Talk About the War

William Hoyle explains why he doesn't want to go back to Korea. He explains that being above the 38th parallel, he wouldn't be able to revisit the Korea he knew, regardless. He goes on to explain that his experiences, including "Bouncing Betties" that blew people's legs off and seeing other horrible things, has impacted his desire to discuss it. He recalls arriving in San Diego and given a notice/letter not to talk to anyone about what they did or saw during the war. He explains that his experiences stayed locked up for over 30 years in a drawer before he was able to talk about it.

Tags: Home front,Impressions of Korea

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Speak Japanese

William Hoyle explains when American soldiers arrived in Korea, they were given instructions and education on speaking Japanese to the Korean civilians, soldiers, etc. He didn't realize that he was insulting them by speaking Japanese and never knew they even had another language other than Japanese. He also heard that the people in Korea were not allowed to speak the Korean language in public, but only in private or with their own families.

Tags: Impressions of Korea

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