Korean War Legacy Project

William C. “Bill” Coe


William C. “Bill” Coe was part of the National Guard from the ages of seventeen to nineteen.  At that point, he decided to enlist in the Army and was stationed in Japan.  When the Korean War broke out, he was the first Army Regiment that was sent to Korea.  After landing in Busan, Coe went to Suwon and then onto Osan.  As a radio operator, Coe fought in the Battle of Osan against the North Koreans. William Coe also remembers battles at the Nakdonggang River and Yalu River where they fought again the North Koreans and the Chinese. After revisiting South Korea, William Coe was proud of all the new buildings and bridges that were created after the war.

Video Clips

Landing in Pusan

William Coe explains that he left for Korea from Japan on the July 1, 1950. He shares that they took a C-54 with Company B. He was remembers that they got right on a train and that they were ready to “fight” and tried not to be afraid. not to be afraid.

Tags: 1950 Pusan Perimeter, 8/4-9/18,Busan,Fear,Front lines,Impressions of Korea

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Famous Task Force Smith

William Coe was a member of the famous “Task Force Smith.” He explains why the group was so well-known and important. He gives some details about what happened during that time, including taking a Russian vehicle.

Tags: Osan,Front lines,Pride

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Battle of Osan and Interaction with North Koreans

William Coe remembers his experiences at Osan with the North Koreans. He would have to shoot many North Koreans that were attacking, and he lost a lot of his friends during this battle. He was very lucky as a radio operator because he was not really hit.

Tags: Osan,Front lines,North Koreans,Weapons

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Nakdonggang River Battles

During the Nakdonggang River Battles, William Coe remembers that he was supposed to fight with an all-African American regiment and a South Korean regiment, but they retreated. William Co shares that he put tanks on the hill to shoot the North Koreans, but his regiment had to fall back to prevent them from being captured. He thought that they were losing at the time and the war didn’t look good for the Americans.

Tags: Nakdonggang (River),Front lines,North Koreans

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Fighting the Chinese Up to the Yalu River

William Coe’s company fought the Chinese all the way up to the Yalu River. He describes the scene at the time, explaining that the North Koreans didn't take any prisoners, so either did the US. William Coe recalls a time when he had to blow up many US supplies so that the Chinese wouldn't use them against him.

Tags: Aprokgang (Yalu River),Chinese,Front lines,North Koreans,Physical destruction

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