Korean War Project

Reconnaissance Company - Marines


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Reconnaissance







Photo by Hal Barker. Copyright 1989.





65 Messages

Page 1

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Entry: 93008
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
WALTER E PEASE USN

JIM PEASE wrote on April 13, 2016


City and State:

Unit: FAMILY

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: Looking for info on Lt jg Walt Pease BUDS class #2 1951, I found A 3\16 bronze star on blue white field. I heard from a class mate in 51 that he joined beach jumpers they stayed in touch until about 59 . he was never much for talk but a well trained in martial arts and pressure points
A major pain when I was a kid. I was told never to ask about Korea by my dad a ww2 vet but no one ever asked now he's gone everyone asks me about it. Just because he always wanted to beat hell out of me. When I became a decent martial artist we seemed mend fences but he passed at 82. Until he was 80 he swam 3 miles everyday and ran 2 but stubborn as hell he climbed a tree 80 ft to fix his TV and fell broke
His back.


Keywords:


Entry: 92998
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
WALT PEASE USN

JIM PEASE wrote on April 13, 2016


City and State:

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: Looking for info on Lt jg Walt Pease BUDS class #2 1951, I found A 3\16 bronze star on blue white field. I heard from a class mate in 51 that he joined beach jumpers they stayed in touch until about 59 . he was never much for talk but a well trained in martial arts and pressure points
A major pain when I was a kid. I was told never to ask about Korea by my dad a ww2 vet but no one ever asked now he's gone everyone asks me about it. Just because he always wanted to beat hell out of me. When I became a decent martial artist we seemed mend fences but he passed at 82. Until he was 80 he swam 3 miles everyday and ran 2 but stubborn as hell he climbed a tree 80 ft to fix his TV and fell broke
His back.


Keywords:


Entry: 92280
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
RECON MARINES - KOREA 1953

STEPHEN SELBY wrote on November 23, 2015


City and State: DALLASTOWN PA

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: I am looking for anyone who could have any information on my grandfather Frederick Neil Selby. He served in Korea from 1953 to 1954 as a Recon Marine. He went by the nickname Cotton. He did not provide much information other than he was on the 38th when the armistice took place. He told me that they conducted surveillance operations for the rest of the year. I'm hoping to have further information to pass onto my family regarding my grandfathers service. He returned to San Diego and eventually Camp Lejeune before being discharged in 1957. My grandfather passed away a few years ago taking his experiences with him. Please contact me if you have any knowledge regarding my grandfather.

Keywords: Recon


Entry: 87051
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
WEARABOUTS OF SGT. O'MALLEY

PETER (KIWI) CREAMER wrote on August 21, 2013


City and State: SHERMAN OAKS CA

Unit: RECON CO. !ST MAR DIV

Service or Relationship: MARINE VETERAN

Comments: Sgt O'Malley was shot through the spine while we were on patrol.
Think he ended up in Boston Navel Hospital, and I would like to
know his present address for communications.


Keywords:


Entry: 84496
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
LOOKING FOR ANYONE WHO SERVED WITH MY DAD, SGT JOHN H. ECKHARDT 1948-52

JOHN ECKHARDT JR. wrote on October 23, 2012


City and State:

Unit: 1ST RECON COMPANY/2ND RECON COMPANY

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: Looking for anyone who might have known my dad, SGT
John Eckhardt, who was in the Corps between 48 and
52. Dad was a radio operator with Second Recon
Company before and after Korea, serving with a
detachment of Recon Marines on the submarine
Sealion. In Korea he served with 1st Recon Company
from Inchon, through Seoul and Chosin, finally coming
home in 51 just at the beginning of the Punchbowl
operations. He was good Friends with SGT Morris
Estess, who was captured by the Chinese while serving
detached service with 41 RM Commando during Task
Force Drysdale.

After Korea, dad finished college on the GI Bill,
taught High School and later became a Lutheran
pastor. Dad passed away on Labor Day in 2009, a few
months after his 80th birthday.

I had the opportinity to visit Korea last year with a
group of Korean War Veterans, an experience I will
always treasure. I hope I live long enough to
someday visit the northern part of Korea, and see the
Chosin Reservour area.


Keywords: submarine, Sealion, Sea Lion, recon, Inchon, Chosin,
Seoul, guerilla, Punchbowl, Labrador, Morris Estess.



Entry: 83603
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
LOOKING FOR 1ST AND 2ND RECON ALSO ANYONE IN FLASH/SOUND 11TH MARINE F.O. CO.

TED HASTINGS wrote on July 10, 2012


City and State:

Unit:

Service or Relationship: MARINE VETERAN

Comments: Looking for members Of Agressor Force Recon and
Members of Flash/Sound F.O. Attached to 11th
Marines.Years 1951 to 1954.


Keywords: Reno, Vegas, Carson, The Hook,. 190 Hill Mass


Entry: 82993
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
SSGT RONALD A WELCH

CONNIE SCOTT wrote on May 11, 2012

Email Update Needed

City and State: HURST TX

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: My father retired from the Marines in 1966. Our last
place was Headquarters Battalion MCSC Barstow CA. He
was shot during the korean war and this on going
injury forced the Marines to retire him. Sadly he
passed in 1980 and there is no info on his life with
the Marines. This wonderful Soldier gave it all plus
some. Any one knowing my father or pictures of him I
would love to see them. I did get a copy of his
dd214. Not sure what I am looking for, sadly nothing
pops out. Seems a brick wall is all I meet up with.
Please help me if you can.


Keywords: Korean War Survivor


Entry: 81882
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
HANK LAROM, RECON, 1ST AND 6TH MARINES, 1951-1954

DAVID LAROM wrote on January 27, 2012


City and State:

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: My Dad, Henry (Hank) Larom, was a Recon
Marine who came to Korea Jan 53 and left Jan 54. He was
attached to H and S Co, 1/1 as an intelligence man, and
served with Rodney Bacigalupo, James E Owens, Jack
Slayton, Fred Silbersdorf, George P Geronime, Gordon
Hacker and Gordon Brown if any of those names ring a bell.

If you go to
http://www.forcerecon.com/images/50s/arinspection.gif
you can a photo of my dad on the USS Perch in 1951 or
1952. He's the guy getting the mean look.

He also did an atom bomb shot, Dog of Tumbler-Snapper
series, May 1 1952, when he was Recon in the 6th
Marines. If any of this sounds familiar, feel free to
contact me.

thanks,
Dave Larom


Keywords: Recon, H and S Co, 1st Marines, 6th Marines, Recon, Owens,
Bacigalupo, Slayton, Silbersdorf, Geronime, Hacker,
Gordon Brown, atomic, USS Perch, 1953, 1952, 1951, 1954



Entry: 81843
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
LOOKING FOR ANYONE THAT SERVED WITH MY FATHER ROBERT BAISDEN

LINDA SHEPHERD wrote on January 24, 2012


City and State: COLUMBUS OH

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments:

Keywords: My father was from West Virginia. 1955 - 1958 Looking
for anyone that might remember serving with my
father. My father is 81 currently. Went by Bob. I
will try to get addtional information. If anyone
knows or remembers Robert Baisden went as Bob from
WVA. Please let me know.



Entry: 79049
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
FORCE RECON

ONI HALL wrote on May 27, 2011


City and State: UTICA NY

Unit:

Service or Relationship: INTERESTED PERSON

Comments: Semper Fi Marines i'm enlisted in the Corps and want to go to boot camp September 6th.

Keywords: Onifield. 


Entry: 78883
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
LOOKING FOR TROY B.DONALDSON 1953-1954

GAIL DONALDSON wrote on May 11, 2011

Email Update Needed

City and State: HILLSDALE MI

Unit: HOW CO.3RD BATTALION 1ST DIVISON

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments:

Keywords:  


Entry: 76218
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
1ST MARINE RECON COMPANY LOGO??

ALLISON WINWARD wrote on September 21, 2010

Email Update Needed

City and State: VANCOUVER WA

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: I am trying to find the 1st Amphibious Reconnaissance
Company logo for my Grandpa. He was at Camp
Pendleton, CA from April 1955 to June 1957.

Any leads on this would be much appreciated!!


Keywords: logos, rubber boat, crossed paddles, skull with hat,
amphibious reconnaissance



Entry: 75122
RECON COMPANY - MARINES

JOHN (JAKE) BABCOCK wrote on June 17, 2010

Email Update Needed

City and State: LEAKEY TX

Unit: RECON CO.,1ST MAR.DIV. KOREA

Service or Relationship: MARINE VETERAN

Comments: Would like to hear from any of the above or anyone else that served under the above CO's

Keywords: B.J.Wade 1060801?, Herb Friedmann, Marvin Perskie(Maj.) Eric Holmgrain(Maj.) Walter Walsh(Capt)Brad Anderson, Ben Lee, Submarine Perch


Entry: 74588
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
KOREAN GOVT IS LOOKING FOR VETERANS WHO SERVED WITH LT WILLIAM SHAW

AARON AUSTIN wrote on May 5, 2010

Email Update Needed

City and State: WASHINGTON DC

Unit:

Service or Relationship: OTHER

Comments: The ROK Govt would like to honor the Marines who served with Navy Lieutenant William Shaw during an offering cermeony at a Seoul Memorial during the 60th Anniversary of the Inchon Landing Celebrations coming up in Sept. They want to invite the Marines whose patrol Lt. Shaw led into North Korea but do not have any contact information for them. The list of Marines they are looking for is as follows:

1. Sergeant Robert F. Blum
2. Sergeant Walter C. Brazil
3. Sergeant Arnold A. Lentz
4. Private (first class) Edward L. Tressler
5. Private (first class) R. C. Jenkins
6. Private (first class) Thomas S. Tischler

I work with the CNO's staff and am coordinating this search with the Korean Naval Attache. If you have any information or leads, please contact LCDR Aaron Austin at 703-693-2838 or via e-mail

Thank you in advance for helping to get these men to Korea for this special honor.

Very Respectfully,

LCDR Aaron Austin OPNAV 52 - International Engagement


Keywords:


Entry: 73880
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
C POLSTON USMC KOREA 51-52

CATHERINE TRANBARGER wrote on March 11, 2010


City and State: KOKOMO IN

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments:

Keywords: I am looking for anyone who might have served with my dad, Charles W Polston USMC Korea 51-52.I am told he was in Recon. One of his pictures has a tent with names on the door. The names are: JT Keeling, MM Collins, EJ Stewart, B Howell, NA Payne and my dad's. If anyone has any info I would appreciate it. Thankyou. Cathy - Veteran Daughter and Mother.


Entry: 71857
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
RAYMOND JOE WADE

RHONDA GRAY wrote on October 6, 2009


City and State: HECTOR AR

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments:

Keywords: I would have to look at my fathers papers to see where he served..He was in the Korean War as a first machine gunner..if there is anyone out there who might remember him his name is Raymond Wade from Arkansas..


Entry: 70221
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
CAMP DELMAR 1951 RECON

GEORGE BAKER wrote on May 18, 2009

Email Update Needed

City and State: TELFORD PA

Unit: 1ST AMPHIBIOUS RECON

Service or Relationship: MARINE VETERAN

Comments: Anybody out there at Delmar at that time.
I was a Radio Operator for one of the three 10 man rafts that we trained on. The Quonset Hut was about 100 yards from the surf. The water was cold, and I got many snootsfull of salt water before we learned how to get out past the breaking waves.


Keywords: March 1951 training at Camp Delmar


Entry: 68404
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
DEATH NOTICE

DAN O'BRIEN wrote on December 27, 2008

Email Update Needed

City and State: HOLYOKE MA

Unit: A/1/83RD ARTY RVN

Service or Relationship: ARMY VETERAN

Comments: Robert V. Wilson [64] of Chicopee Mass., recently died of colin cancer. Bob was in the USMC from 1962-1966 and in the 3rd Bn, 1st Marine Force Recon in Vietnam as a sniper.

Keywords: RVN A Shau Valley 101 DIVARTY


Entry: 62749
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
RECON CO, USMC

DAVID GASKIN wrote on October 27, 2007


City and State: EXTON PA

Unit: RECON CO

Service or Relationship: MARINE VETERAN

Comments: punchbowl, korea

Keywords: moose


Entry: 57999
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
CHINA MARINE REST IN PEACE

MICHAEL GRAHAM wrote on July 6, 2006

Email Update Needed

City and State: MADISON TN

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: my father george w.graham a china marine earned the silver star in korea he died 2 years ago and was buried with full honors (god bless the marines) was just wondering if any 1 remembers him or served with him

Keywords: inchon korea


Entry: 55435
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
LOOKING FOR 1ST MARINE RECON VETS

ROBERT LUSTER wrote on January 27, 2006

Email Update Needed

City and State: ESCONDIDO CA

Unit: 1ST MAR DIV HQBN RECON CO

Service or Relationship: MARINE VETERAN

Comments: WOULD LIKE TO HEAR FROM RECON MARINES WHO SERVED WITH ME ON DMZ 1954---1955

Keywords:


Entry: 55417
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
BRONZE STAR CITATION

JOHN ONTIVEROS JR. wrote on January 26, 2006


City and State: HOUSTON TX

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS
HEADQUARTERS
1ST MARINE DIVISION (REINF) FMF
c/o FLEET POST OFFICE
SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA


In the name of the President of the United States, the
Commanding General, 1st Marine Division (Reinf) FMF,
takes pleasure in awarding the BRONZE STAR MEDAL to

CORPORAL JOHN C. ONTIVEROS
UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS
for service as set forth in the following

CITATION:

"For meritorious achievement in connection with operations
against the enemy in KOREA while serving with a Marine infantry
company from 7 May 1951 to 30 March 1952.

Serving as a fire team leader, Corporal ONTIVEROS displayed
outstanding courage, initiative and devotion to duty.

On one occasion when seriously wounded during an attack
on heavily defended enemy positions, he refused evacuation
and continued to designate targets and direct the advance
of his fire team until forced to be evacuated.

On 17 January 1952 when his company came under a savage
attack by a reinforced enemy squad, he left the cover of
his bunker, exposing himself with complete disregard for
personal safety to intense enemy fire. This action, causing
many enemy casualties, assisted in the final repulsing of the
attack.

Corporal ONTIVEROS' heroism and fortitude throughout were
in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States
Naval Service."

Corporal ONTIVEROS is authorized to wear the Combat "V".

/s/ J.T. SELDON
Major General, U.S.Marine Corps
Commanding

copy


Keywords: KOREA 7 MAY 1951 - 30 MAR 1952


Entry: 55036
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
1ST MARINE DIVISON RECON COMPANY

ROBERT LUSTER wrote on January 6, 2006

Email Update Needed

City and State: ESCONDIDO CA

Unit: 1ST MAR DIV HQBN RECON CO

Service or Relationship: MARINE VETERAN

Comments: WOULD LIKE TO CONTACT ANY MEMBER OF 1ST MARINE DIVISON RECON COMPANY OR THE SUPPORT GROUP PEOPLE WHO SERVED WITH ME

Keywords: KANG WA DO ISLAND


Entry: 52768
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
1ST PLT 1ST RECON CO

DAVID GASKIN wrote on August 22, 2005


City and State: EXTON PA

Unit: 1ST MAR DIV RECON CO 1948-1951

Service or Relationship: MARINE VETERAN

Comments: also, navy commendation w/ combat V for duty as intell cheif w/ hmm 261 in vietnam 1965/66

Keywords: moose, bronz star aug 51 in punch bowl


Entry: 52507
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
RECON LAROM, OWENS, SLAYTON, GERONIME

DAVID LAROM wrote on August 8, 2005


City and State: SAN DIEGO CA

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: My Dad, Henry ("Hank") Larom, was a Recon Marine who came to Korea Jan 53 and left Jan 54. He was attached to H and S Co, 1/1 and served with Rodney Bacigalupo, James E Owens, Jack Slayton, Fred Silbersdorf, George P Geronime, Gordon Hacker and Gordon Brown if any of those names ring a bell. If you go to
http://www.forcerecon.com/images/50s/arinspection.gif
you can see what I think is his photo. He's the guy getting the mean look. He also did an atom bomb shot, "Dog" of Tumbler-Snapper series, May 1 1952. If any of this sounds familiar, feel free to contact me.

thanks,
Dave Larom


Keywords: Recon, H and S Co 1/1, 1st Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, Owens, Bacigalupo, Slayton, Silbersdorf, Geronime, Hacker, Gordon Brown, atomic.


Entry: 52176
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
ALPHONSE (FRENCY) LEDET

CHARLES H. (CHUCK) CARR wrote on July 21, 2005

Deceased

City and State: APPLETON WI

Unit:

Service or Relationship: MARINE VETERAN

Comments: Looking for anyone who served with "Frency" Ledet from Houma, LA in a Recon Unit in Korea. We served together in the Marine Detachment aboard the USS Philippine Sea CV 47 1947 / 1949. Frency is deceased but would likt to make contact with anyone who knew him in Korea.


Keywords: Alphonse Octave "Frency" Ledet /Recon Unit in Korea


Entry: 50967
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
DID YOU KNOW JERRY PERKINS?

JIM PERKINS wrote on May 19, 2005

Email Update Needed

City and State:

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: Looking for anyone who knew my dad during Korean War. A machine gunner named Jerry Perkins, from Iowa. I am writing a book and need info. Please email me...Jim Perkins at jimsingz@aol.com

Keywords: personal friends, machine gunners


Entry: 49480
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
WOULD LIKE TO HEAR FROM FORMER 1ST MAR DIV

VERN HUGHES wrote on March 9, 2005

Email Update Needed

City and State:

Unit: USMC 1ST MAR DIV RECON COMPANY

Service or Relationship: MARINE VETERAN - KOREA

Comments: looking for reunion and conversation from former members of 9th replacement draft

Keywords: punchbowl, 1st Chopper landing


Entry: 49150
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
LOOKING FOR INFO

VICTORIA WHITE wrote on February 21, 2005

Email Update Needed

City and State: ANDERSON CA

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: My name is Victoria. I am looking for information and history, on my grandfather's days and events as a commanding officer, in the United States Navy. My grandmother, Victoria White-Mcgregor, still living, remains cold and unwilling to share his many accomplishes in his 40+yrs as a dedicated naval officer. He was commander of submarine fleets, lived during both world wars, beginning, 1920's-1970's? He also had a lengthly knowledge of Korea.He talked alot about the koreans, in a respectful manor. We were under the impression he admired their culture and honored the people. The stories we heard were healthy communication between a fighting county. The looked up to this man in uniform, and enjoyed his company. I didn't understand the commodery between their conflicts. Including lang, people, and history. He spoke English, but could speak fluient french, and especially Italian. He died in 1980's or early 1990's,due to Alzeimers Decease. I also lost my mother in an airplane crash, in 1978, which has confused my early childhood memories of times and dates. He was retired, and lived in Piedmont, California. He was very good to us and he taught us alot. I would like to share this with my children, a great grandfather, they haven't had the priviledge of knowning.

Keywords: 3 or 4 star retired 3 or 4 star Admiral-John McGregor lived in west coast, stationed?


Entry: 47980
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
RECON CO H AND S BN - KOTO-RI

JOSEPH GATZ wrote on January 6, 2005

Email Update Needed

City and State: CARPENTERSVILLE IL

Unit: RECONNIACE CO.H-S BN.,1ST MARINE DIV

Service or Relationship: MARINE VETERAN - KOREA

Comments: My Platoon,the 1st of Recon Co under 1st Lt E.Hargett was the last Plt out of the Chosin.As we were assigned to be the rear gaurd for the Div and attached units.Our main mission was to gaurd the Tanks and to keep a safe buffer distance from the refugees and the ensuing Chinese army.We lost a few good men in the encounter.And as Gen. O.P.Smith said,"This is not a retreat,as we are fighting in another direction.Semper-Fi.Joseph Gatz

Keywords: On leaving Koto-Ri on our march to the sea.We were the rear gaurd for the 1st Marine Division and attached units.


Entry: 46164
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
52-83 I CO AND HQ CO AND RECON

WILLIAM (BILL) VAN HORN wrote on October 4, 2004


City and State: KAILUA KONA HI

Unit: 1ST.MARINES 1ST DIV.

Service or Relationship: MARINE VETERAN - KOREA

Comments:

Keywords: 1952 to 53 1st Marines i co and hq co and recon


Entry: 41592
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
HONOR...

BRIAN KACHLIC wrote on March 8, 2004


City and State:

Unit:

Service or Relationship: .........

Comments: Although I am not a veteran of Korea, yet am a former Recon Marine... The bravest men I have ever abd will ever know... Semper Fidelis

Keywords: 1st Amphibious Reconnaissance Battalion


Entry: 41042
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
PEROSNAL

ELEANOR TURINO wrote on February 18, 2004


City and State:

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: My uncle was a Korean War veteran. I
remember being impressed by his photo as a
child. He recently died. He had no children
and no wife at the time of his death. His sister
and I are still trying to locate his
paperwork.,documents, etc. I think he might
have been in this 1st Div Recon. I am not
sure. I would apprectiate any information
about him . His name was Albert Turinoand
was from Brooklyn, N. Y.


Keywords: fort campbell


Entry: 40354
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
RECON CO IST MARINE DIV

WILLIAM GOBERT wrote on January 28, 2004

Email Update Needed

City and State:

Unit: RECON CO IST MARINE DIV

Service or Relationship: MARINE VETERAN - KOREA

Comments: I HAD THE HONOR AND PRIVILEGE TO SERVE WITH A GREAT GROUP OF RECON MARINES--FROM 1948-50 AT CAMP
LE JEUNE, NC AND FROM 1950-51--WITH THE 1ST MARINE DIV RECON CO.--SERVED IN THE 3RD PLT.WHILE
IN KOREA-HAD MY RIFLE BLOW-UP AT THE AMBUSH AT
SU-DONG-NI--ATE THE TOOTSIE ROLLS DROPPED AT KOTO-RE--CRIED WHEN THEY BURIED THE 117 IN THE MASS GRAVE AT KOTO-RE--WAS IN THE LAST FIRE TEAM TO
COME DOWN THE PASS FROM THE TREADWAY BRIDGE-TOOK
PART IN OPERATION SUMMITT-CLIMBED DOWN THE KNOTTED
ROPES AND WAS PROUD TO BE A MEMBER OF"TOWHEY`S
RAIDERS
SEMPER FI
MARINE GOBERT


Keywords: MARINE GOBERT-WILL-INCHON-SEOUL-CHOSIN RES-SPRING
OFFENSIVE-OPERATION KILLER-OPERATION SUMMIT HILL
889-PUNCH BOWL.STETTER-SERI-REED-SEFIC-IKE-KASDORF
SENN-LEWIS-MOOSE-DIAMOND JOE-NOVAK-SGT.TOWHEY AND
MANY MORE.TOOK 11 CRUSIES ON 9 DIFFERENT SHIPS MOST FAMOUS WAS THE USS SEALION-TROOP CARRING SUB.
TOOK PART IN OPERATION SUMMITT--1ST TIME ANY USA
TROOPS WERE TRANSPORTED FROM A NON-COMBAT TO A
COMBAT AREA--SEPT. 1951



Entry: 39045
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
SILVER STAR

GENE BAGNOLI wrote on December 9, 2003

Email Update Needed

City and State:

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FRIEND OF VETERAN

Comments: My father was(always will be) a Marine who recieved 3 purple hearts, 3 bronze stars and a silver star for service during the Korean conflict. Lost his sea bag and medals while headed home. Have helped him replace many of them. Convinced him to join the Chosen Few. Cherishes his Kabar and bayonett which he refused to part with??? Why??? Has never spoke of any of his "experiences" that earned him these medals. As dad is getting older he is beginning to show increased intrest in the Corps. I would like to present him with his medals and compile a Framed "CV" of sorts. Can any one direct me on how to obtain this info.

Thanks,

Gene Mark Bagnoli
Revdivr@yahoo.com


Keywords: Chosen, Inchon, Seol?, USMC,DI, Eugene (Gene) Bagnoli,Silver and bronze stars 3 purple hearts


Entry: 37147
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
1ST MARINE DIV RECON 49-51

STEVEN KENNY wrote on September 25, 2003


City and State:

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: My Uncle James Roger Kenny was 19 when he was killed with four others. They hit a tank mine with a Jeep. If you knew him I would love to hear from you. He was Recon

Keywords:


Entry: 35467
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
FIRST MARINE RECON

JOHN TROWBRIDGE wrote on July 13, 2003

Email Update Needed

City and State: LAWRENCEBURG KY

Unit: KENTUCKY MILITARY HISTORY MUSEUM

Service or Relationship: FRIEND OF VETERAN

Comments: Looking for anyone who served with my dad, Lindy G. Trowbridge. My dad was a Navy Medic assigned to 1st Marine Recon. I've requested a copy of his DD214 to verify his service. My dad is a three-war veteran. While serving with the Recon in Korea he was wounded, yet he never received the Purple Heart Medal. This was due to the fact that he never reported his wound. He and a couple of the Marines "patched" him up. He told me they did this so he wouldn't be medivac out of his unit. Growing up, I remember this wound would, from time to time flare up and bother him. I would like to verify his wound and surprise him with his Purple Heart.

Keywords: Lindy G. "Doc" Trowbridge


Entry: 33146
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
1ST MARINE DIVISION

LYNN ARMSTRONG-COPPOLA wrote on March 28, 2003


City and State: PHILADELPHIA PA

Unit: 1ST MARINE DIVISION (RECON)

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: My later father, Robert F. Armstrong, was in the Korean conflict with the 1st Marine Division in the early 1950s. When he was alive, he often talked about his life as a Marine. I would like to know if anyone remembers my father and also if anyone remembers Sgt. Lloyd Smalley of New York who was killed in 1952. The death of Sgt. Smalley deeply touched my father and he often spoke about him. I would appreciate any stories or information you may have. Thank you!

Keywords:


Entry: 33094
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
A MARINE WHO TRADED LIBERTY FOR HIS OWN LIFE~

MARK FLOWERS wrote on March 26, 2003

Email Update Needed

City and State: MIDWAY PARK NC

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: My Father! Earl Dean Flowers, Of Anderson In. Was a Corporal during the Korean War, A Silver Star recipient, A Hero! 5 Campaigns in Korea, 7 in Vietnam..that amazing never received the Purple Heart, Never got a scratch, But in Dec. 14th 1999 My Father died, as if he took a bullet.. from Hodgekins lymphoma(sp)Cancer from agent orange, in Vietnam, it had a 30 yr. incubation period, after 5yrs of kemo, his heart gave up in the end, the cancer never got him. Toughest Man i ever knew, To take kemo for 5 YEARS! HOw he stood it i will never know, As a former Marine myself, I can say it was the Marine in him! NEVER SAY DIE!..THE book the chosin, on pg 390, theres a pragraph about him..and i miss him..Semper FI..mark~

Keywords: 1St Marine Division 1st Marines A co.


Entry: 32998
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
SILVER AND BRONZE STAR RECIPIENTS?

TONI RICKMAN wrote on March 22, 2003

Email Update Needed

City and State:

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: Hi. My grandfather was in the Army and served in the Korean Conflict. He received a Silver Star and a Bronze Star. He wouldn't talk about the experience and never told anyone in our family the reasons for receiving the medals. He died about 14 years ago, and I'm trying to find out how I would go about finding out the reasons for receiving the medals.

Thanks,
Toni Rickman


Keywords:


Entry: 31571
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
LOOKING FOR A PATCH

BRYAN MAYES wrote on January 29, 2003

Email Update Needed

City and State:

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FRIEND OF VETERAN

Comments: I have a friend who is looking for the first amphibious recon patch. The patch has a rubber raft, the number one on it, waves crashing over it and somethng to do with the skkipper maybe a hat. if you have any knowledge abot this please let me know the years were 1955 on the patch did change to what is is now.

Keywords: units


Entry: 29948
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
HUMAN WAVES

MARK MARQUEZ wrote on November 27, 2002


City and State: ROCK POINT AZ

Unit: FORMER US MARINE 1976-1982

Service or Relationship: FRIEND OF VETERAN

Comments: Greetings from the Navajo Reservation:

I teach US History. Our work and lesson is covering the Korean War. I would like to request anyone who can donate books, experiences or information about the Korean War. I do appreciate this for our school and class. I served honorably in the US Marine Corps and appreciate the history of my troops whom I served with. I don't care if the information is from other branches of service.

Thanks

Mark L. Marquez


Keywords:


Entry: 26703
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
BILL GALATI

TOM GALATI wrote on July 3, 2002

Email Update Needed

City and State: WEST ORANGE NJ

Unit: RECON

Service or Relationship: -

Comments: I am the son of Bill Galati. My father served in
Korea until 53'. He was part of the recon unit.

If any of you remember him as part of your
group, I would like to her from you. Dad
passed three years ago June 10th.

Thanks
Tom Galati


Keywords: Bill Galati
RECON, 1st marine divison
Code Name: Brooklyn



Entry: 26389
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
1ST SQUAD, 1ST PLT , NOV 51

DAVID GASKIN wrote on June 19, 2002


City and State: EXTON PA

Unit: 1ST RECON CO

Service or Relationship: MARINE VETERAN - KOREA

Comments: HARPER TOOK OVER THE 1ST SQUAD WHEN I LEFT KOREA IN NOV 51. WOULD LIKE TO HEAR FROM ANY OF 1ST PLATOON FROM NOV 51.WE HAVE RECON REUNION EVERY YEAR IN EARLY OCT. THIS YEAR WILL BE IN WASH DC

RETIRED AS GSGT JUL 68


Keywords: MOOSE, PUNCH BOWL,CPL HARPER


Entry: 25302
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
LOCATE MISSING MARINE

BILL HEAD wrote on May 8, 2002

Email Update Needed

City and State: HONOLULU HI

Unit: 1ST. MARINES 1ST. MARINE RECON

Service or Relationship: MARINE VETERAN - KOREA

Comments: we were on a patrol may 1st.1953 . a marine stepped on a land mine and lost one or both legs we carried him to the m.l.r. .where a chooper took him away . as i returned to my outfit . i was unable to find out what happened to him . he was a afro american marine . i sure would like hear from him , any one else having any information , please let me know. thank you cpl. bill head 1282021

Keywords:


Entry: 24891
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
LOOKING FOR MARION NEDUM(NOT SURE OF SPELLING)

DEBBIE PATROW wrote on April 22, 2002


City and State:

Unit: 1ST MARINE DIVISION, RECON COMPANY ,

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: My dad, Don Griggs, was in Korea from 1950-1953, 3rd platoon. He's been looking for Marion, he was from Alice, Texas back then. He's also interested in contacting anyone from his platoon. 1st Marine Div. headquarters recon company. Just e-mail me and I'll forward it to him. Thanks!!!

Keywords:


Entry: 24573
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
MARINE RECON-KOREA

DAVID BROOKS wrote on April 6, 2002


City and State: FAYETTEVILLE TN

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: I am looking for info on the following units: 1st Amphibious Recon Co.('51-'52), Second Signal Operations Company(1952), Kimpo Provisional Regiment('52-'53), and 1st Recon. Company('53-'54); or anyone who knew my father, Mason P. Brooks. He was involved in the Punchbowl engagements and the first helo-lift of combat troops. Any info would be appreciated. I'm having a heck of time finding info.

Keywords: 1st Amphibious Recon Co; Second Signal Operations Co.; Kimpo Provisional Regiment; 1st Recon Co.


Entry: 24077
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
FINDING SGT FETTERS

WILLIAM (BUD) HEDRICK wrote on March 19, 2002

Email Update Needed

City and State: SAUSALITO CA

Unit: FOX/2/5

Service or Relationship: -

Comments: Would like to locate and hear from Sgt Fetters whom I served with at Pendleton after we returned from Korea where he served in Division Recon. I don't remember the first name but I'll never forget your wife's fried chicken and the friday night fights. Semper Fi Bud Hedrick Fox/2/5

Keywords:


Entry: 23446
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
RECON 1957-1959

TIM PALMER wrote on February 24, 2002

Email Update Needed

City and State:

Unit:

Service or Relationship: FAMILY MEMBER

Comments: theese guys served with my father in the usmc around 1957-1959 sonys dad owened aplace on bourbon st my dad wishes he could find them i am trying to help. sempre fi.

Keywords: sony consenera,Art lebeau,Paul debella,probably special forces recon1957-1959


Entry: 23056
RECON COMPANY - MARINES
MARINE MEMOIRS

RON HEDL wrote on February 10, 2002

Email Update Needed

City and State:

Unit:

Service or Relationship: MARINE VETERAN - KOREA

Comments:    
   Friends have, from time to time, shown an interest in the adventures I enjoyed during my Marine Corps. years. To indulge that interest, I've put together this memoir. I hope it entertains you. First, of course, a few dry historical facts. After that, the lies begin.


   I enlisted in the Marine Corps. in November 1948, shortly after my eighteenth birthday. I served just short of four years. I really enjoyed those years. I learned lots about myself and the world. I felt like I 'grew up' during those years. I feel real proud I wore that uniform.


   Let me tell you how I ended up in the Marines. I wanted to get away from home real bad. For reasons I no longer recall, I wanted to join the Navy and go to submarine school. When I talked to the Navy recruiter, he told me I'd have to wait 6 to 8 months (at 18, forever) till I could join up. As I slouched out the door of his office, scuffing my feet, head sunk in my shoulders, looking at the toes of my shoes, I heard this large, deep, strong voice ask: "What's the matter son, didn't they treat you right?" I looked up. There stood this 6'2" guy with shoulders like Atlas, chin like the Rock of Gibraltar, wearing what looked like 10 rows of ribbons on his undress blues. 30 minutes later I walked out - the newest member of "The few, the proud, the Marines".


   After Boot Camp I got orders to Radio Operator School at Camp Delmar, CA. When I finished Radio School, I received orders to the 5th Marines at Camp Pendleton. Colonel Kulak, the smallest man, at that time, in the Marine Corps commanded the 5th Marines.


   I served as the CO's radio operator and chief gofer till transferred to Recon. Co. Then came the war. After getting wounded during the pull out from Koto-Ri I spent a few months in the Naval Hospitals at Yokosuka and Otsu, Japan patiently manufacturing scar tissue. About mid 1951 I got transferred to Hdqtrs. Co., Quantico, VA. where I worked as a teletype operator and manned the Western Union office. Early in 1952 I got transferred to the Naval Air Station at Opalocka, FL. Where I took my discharge in Sept. of 1952.


   Let me tell you a little story about my time at Quantico. The Marine Corps. had located its Officer Candidate School at Quantico. All freshly minted Marine Second Lieutenants had to attend that school. Second Lieutenants littered the grounds like trash after a rock concert.


   One night, while I had the duty, 4 or 5 lieutenants-in-training came by to send messages. One of those guys decided to give me some shit. He felt very impressed by his bars. I ignored his bullshit for a while but grew impatient. I beckoned to him and the other lieutenants-in-waiting. I gently said, "come closer". They did. I said, quietly, "Do you know why the Marine Corps. has to turn out 200 new Marine Lieutenants every month?" "No", they said, "Why does the Marine Corps want to turn out 200 new lieutenants every month?" I beckoned them closer. They leaned towards my little western Union window. I said, even more quietly, "Because any half-way decent Marine platoon in combat will go through at least 2 lieutenants before anyone else gets hurt."


   I had other adventures with low ranking officers. One of the guys in Recon. Co. buddied up with me. His dad worked as the chaplain for some ivy-covered school back east. He, my buddy, dated some of the Rockefeller girls. Upper crust folks. He felt as proud of his membership in Recon. as I did.


   One day, while on a little R and R in Sasebo, Japan, 5 or 6 of us enlisted pigs walked down the street looking for fun. A group of young naval officers passed us coming from the other direction - probably looking for the same thing. All of us, except for my ivy-league friend, tossed them a salute.

   We could hear the navy guys prodding one of their gang, obviously the group puppy, to take exception to this one missing salute. He ordered us to halt; walked back, and said something to my buddy about his failure to render the proper signs of respect to the uniform. My buddy then looked the navy guy, an ensign, up and down and said, "I don't salute no one who ain't (he said ain't; probably for the first time in his life. Probably the first time he ever used a double negative, too.) been in combat". We all took off running. We spent the next two or three hours hiding out in various bars and restaurants waiting to get picked up by the MPs. They never caught us. Or, maybe, they never looked for us. I ate froglegs for the first time that afternoon.


   I joined Recon. as a PFC and left a Corporal. Lt. Shutler, my commanding officer, promoted me while on board a ship called the Horace Bass. We carried out raids on both coasts of Korea while aboard the Bass.


   I got word, one afternoon, to report to the officer's quarters without a hint of why. I knocked, heard encouraging words and stepped into the closet they described as officer's country, took 2 steps forward, saluted and etc. Lt. Shutler said something not meant for the ages, maybe shook my hand, and said, "Dismissed". I did a smart about-face took 2 steps forward and impaled my forehead on the corner of a piece of angle iron used to support the pipes that writhed everywhere just below the low overhead.


   Lt. Shutler showed some concern at the amount of blood that began to stream down my face. I told him I'd find the corpsman and left. When I arrived at the squad bay, you can just imagine the comments as the blood dripped off my chin. The corpsman, a Cajun, who spoke English as a second language, trimmed what little hair the 1st. Sgt. had left me and plastered my forehead with some fast setting goo to staunch the blood. For days I looked like I'd taken a direct hit from enemy fire.


   I can still get into my blues. I wore them for the first time 54 years ago. I put them on once or twice a year and feel real proud that I once wore the uniform (and can still fit into it). I wore them to my stepdaughter's graduation from Annapolis. Me and a bunch of admirals had lots of fun saluting each other. I told the commander of the Academy that I had to cut off a ponytail so I could wear the uniform. He asked me why I didn't take off the mustache too. I told him that age has some privilege.


   I've got lots of stories to tell, but I no longer feel that they, for sure, reflect facts (and nothing but the facts). I no longer recall the actual events but only my memories of the stories I've told about those events. I tend to 'improve' stories for the entertainment of those I talk to. I no longer can tell where facts leave off and 'improvements' take over. Sorry about that. Ah, well; I've learned to live in a vaguely fictitious world. I hope you folks feel willing to enter a vaguely fictitious world.


   When I served in the Marine Corps., my fellow marines considered me, if not exactly gay, effete and cultured. When I did my time at the Univ. of Chicago they, my fellow students, considered me, if not exactly a gorilla, a member of Der Lumpe or some kind of atavism. "Just goes to prove all things relative


   Prior to my joining the Marines, during my high school years, I took ballet lessons. I competed as a free-style roller skater and took the lessons to improve my performance. I enjoyed the lessons and, though I never performed on stage, took the training seriously. I danced well. At least, many people said so.


   As lessons wore on, my ballet slippers wore out. I made a habit of using the worn slippers for house-shoes. When I packed my little bag for the journey to boot camp I, unthinkingly (world class stupidity), included my house-shoes. That first unpleasant morning (4AM) after arrival, I shuffled into the head wearing them. I might as well have worn a lace nighty.


   I had to whip or get whipped by at least one third of my platoon before they decided either to abandon their beliefs they had a queer in their midst or, at least, they would find me a pushover. The drill instructors stood by with beatific smiles on their faces. I wore them son-of-a-bitchin' shoes till they became threads.


   Let me give you one word of advice, designed to save your sons hours of anguish: Tell them this story, and tell them, when they head for boot camp, to check out their little bags with it in mind.


   Time passed. I ended up, as I said, at Camp Pendleton, California. HdQtrs. Co., 5th Marines, 1st MarDiv. That summer, '49, had more than its share of bad forest (brush really) fires. We spent weeks fighting fires. One night, about 2:00 in the morning, after I'd spent hours lying on my belly chopping brush while other folks stood over me pulling the brush out to make paths so we could get to the hot spots, I felt the sudden need to lie with my knees pulled up to my chin and scream. The officer-in-charge, after hearing my loud complaints, figured out he and the state of California would get no more fire fighting from me. He arranged, by radio, to have me removed to the base hospital. This produced problems. 1st, our little group of fire fighters stood, or in my case lay, near the top of a mountain, ringed on all sides by fire. 2nd, a mile or more lay between us and the nearest approach jeeps could handle. 3rd, The officer-in-charge, in keeping with Marine Corp custom, did not want to send able-bodied men to the rear. He solved this problem, in Marine Corp style, by 'volunteering' 2 guys, who'd suffered burns on their hands and faces, to carry me, strapped to a stretcher, down the mountain, through the ring of fires, to the waiting jeep. The jeep left its headlights on so my stretcher-bearers could find it in the dark.


   I never got to know those stretcher-bearers real well, but I can vouch for their command of the darker side of the English language. The energy produced by their magic words nourished all three of us. My moans and their curses blended like we'd practiced. They managed to find paths through the blazing woods which, though snake-like, in the end, ended up at the jeep. 2 or 3 hours later I found myself in the base operating room. My appendix must go.


   The surgeon who removed my appendix had stopped at Camp Pendleton, while on leave, to use the BOQ (Bachelor Officer Quarters) rather than pay for a hotel room. I've done much the same sort of thing (as enlisted pig, not officer) many times while hitchhiking about the country. I could stop at any military post and claim a meal and a bed. The quarters would never remind you of Motel 6, but no one, not even Motel 6, could beat the price.


   They woke him up, I found out later, because they knew him as one of the Navy's best surgeons. As they say, "the rest is history."


   Shortly before the operation, while the surgeon drank coffee and rubbed sleep out of his eyes, 3 or 4 strong men pulled my knees down from my chest and one of the corpsman shaved off my pubic hair.


   Like Samson, I felt my strength ooze away. Maybe, cutting off my curly locks didn't really steal my strength; at about the same time I got my hair-cut some guy squirted one of those wonder-drugs into my spine; I felt the pain leak out through my toes. I like the Samson version better; more poetic. Not only that, I like to include Samson and me in the same sentence; more macho. Speaking of macho, my courage quickly returned to fill up the empty places left when the pain drained away. Human nature abhors vacuums.


   Shortly after, I ended up in one of those very shiny rooms hospitals feature, cared for by 3 or 4 experts. They performed like the Marine Corps silent-drill-team while, without stumbling, over-flowing with kindness. I admired that trait in them. At that moment, I could, without surfeit, consume all the kindness they could produce.


   The impact of this story loses much of its punch because the large mirror that most times hung over the operating table, which would have allowed me to watch the action, had, 2 or 3 days before, gone into the shop for routine upkeep. I lucked out. One of their medical artists sat in on the seance and produced, while seated on a high, over-looking stool, 8 or 10 color drawings of the process. As he finished each one, he'd hand it to one of the near-by nurses who would show it to me. The surgeon, who took 17 minutes from first cut to last stitch, gave me detailed, step-by-step accounts of what he did, as well, and answered any questions I had. I don't recall either the questions or the answers now. As you might guess, I've very warm feelings for all the folks involved.


   At the end of the operation, I mentioned I felt really thirsty and one of the nurses helped me drink. That water really tasted good. I can still taste it with my memory. I told her I'd rather have beer. Got to keep up the macho image.


   The scar on my belly matches the length of Camel (classic) non-filter cigarettes. I smoked in those days.


   I mentioned before that my fellow Marines often thought me odd. Well, I love military parades. I always enjoyed taking part in them. I never told my fellow marines of this strange, (in their eyes) perverse pleasure. I bitched just enough to keep my cover. When march music comes up on the radio I often arm myself with our broom and march around the house, shouting out commands. My children always shake their heads, sadly, and then try to ignore me.


   I also liked to go on maneuvers. I took the top-sergeant aside and asked him to "volunteer", (assign) me when they needed extra men for the 'enemy' troops when other groups went out on maneuvers. The other guys thought he really had it in for me. They thought I had the patience of Job, because I bore up under his "picking on me" so well. Again, just the amount of bitching required to maintain the fiction.


   During the Korean War, the 'Generals' assigned my outfit, Recon. Co., in concert with a detachment of UDT guys, to make a series of raids on the east coast of Korea, and a couple reconnaissance missions on the west coast. To that purpose we boarded the Horace A. Bass, a destroyer escort converted to carrying sneaky folks like us.


   I recall the day we boarded the Bass. About 10 guys, members of the UDT, sat on the fantail and gave us the glad hand, etc. One of them, a large, impressive guy, crushed my hand with his and said, "You don't know me, but you done read about me". He might've said something like "You don't know me, but you've seen my picture in the papers." You get the idea.


   I liked him right off.


   We practiced many drills with the UDT guys. Among them, getting picked up out of the water after a mission. A tough trick. A guy, sitting on the pontoon of a landing craft moving about 5 or 10 miles per hour, would hook arms with the swimmer and lift him, using the motion of the boat, out of the water and onto the rubber raft. When he would pick us out of the water, he would pull us up, out of the water and, more or less, onto our feet in the rubber raft tied to the landing craft that cruised along picking us up. He belonged in the UDT. Lesser beings would barely get us onto the pontoon.


   We (me, at least) enjoyed the adventure of two typhoons while on board the Bass. I recall the thrill of seeing the ship sliding down the backside of huge waves, diving into the oncoming wave, burying the bow all the way to the bridge under water and then slowly, shuddering, straining, the bow would start to lift up out of the water and huge chunks of blue water would come hurtling back and crash into the bridge structure.


   During one typhoon, the Bass lost a landing craft that the waves got hold of. One of the curved, tapering I-beam structures (I forget their name) that the landing craft hung from, got twisted 90 degrees by the force of the landing craft getting torn off. During the worst of the storms, the cooks managed to produce sandwiches, which we ate while tied in our bunks.


   The Bass had a gun-tub just below and in front of the bridge, which folks could enter, from below decks, through a hatch. Folks on the bridge couldn't see the tub. I used to, during the typhoons, climb into the gun tub from inside the ship and play with the storm.


   I tied a couple lengths of rope around my waist. I'd wait till I could feel that the ship had arrived at the top of a wave. Then I’d open the hatch, climb through, secure it, and tie myself in to the 3/4" inch or so rod that served as a handhold near the top of the tub and wait for the next wave. The ship would slide down the backside of the wave; dive into the next wave and then as it lifted free, the wind would throw tons of blue water straight aft. I'd duck down below the top of the tub just before the water crashed into the tub and bridge structure. The whole tub would fill with water. When I looked up I could see solid water above me. The tub would drain and I'd stand up and wait to dodge the next wave. Real fun. I don't think anyone else knew of my little game. The folks on the bridge would deploy shields over the bridge windows (windows?) during the storms that restricted their vision and made my little game possible.


   I love to tell this story: During the Korean War, between missions, we had 4 or 5 days of R and R in Japan. During one lark, We snuck into the off-limits Korean village that bordered the base where we got quartered during the R and R. We found some local taverns and commenced to get real drunk and real 'boisterous'.


   After while, the landlord got tired of our busting up chairs and tables, pinching the bar maids and, in one way or the other, acting like soldiers at war. Despite the ease with which we parted with our money, he called the Shore Patrol. Lucky for us, the Shore Patrol always responds to these complaints with sirens blasting. We heard them coming and left. We hurried. We split up and made our way, by ones and twos, through the village, back over the 10 or 12 ft chain-link fence that ringed the base and, after this or that drunken mistake, to our quarters. Our training helped.


   One of the guys in our squad, Joe, didn't make it with the rest of us. We last saw Joe as he passed, head first, like superman, through a window.


   2 or 3 hours later Joe appeared, looking like something from a horror movie about swamp monsters and smelling like something that had stayed waaay too long in the ice-box. He flopped down on his bunk and passed out. God, he stank.


   3 or 4 of us got up, picked the cot up by the corners, carried it out of the squad-bay, down the barracks hall and out onto the sidewalk. We set it down and went back to bed.


   In the morning, the Japanese workers employed on the base came trotting down the street past Joe and his cot. They had lots to say. I wish I could report some of their comments but they spoke, of course, Japanese. I could, sort of, tell what they said by reading their "body language". Many of them held their noses and walked way out into the street to avoid Joe and his cot.


   In time, Joe woke up. If only TV cameras could've captured that moment. Before he could open his eyes, he had to scrape some of the caked muck off. He looked down at himself, looked at his hands, gagged and began to puke. Man, did that guy have talent. I swear, some of what he had to eat or drink the night before cleared 15' before touching down. He raised himself off the cot and, still gagging, still puking, took off all his clothes right there on the street. Leaving cot and clothes behind, Joe made for the showers where, without pause, he spent the next 3 or 4 hours scrubbing. (And gagging.)


   We figured out Joe, when he went through that window, neatly landed in the tavern's honey-pot. One of those large, deep honey-pots. One of those honey-pots with the special features only public use can produce. Too drunk to notice at the time, he staggered around in the dark and managed to avoid (or maybe they managed to avoid him) the Shore Patrol and, in the end, like Ulysses, returned, after many exploits, home. The cot and the clothes vanished. We never mentioned the affair to Joe again.


   Some months later, during the Seoul campaign, we had the same kind of thing happen. The fortunes of war had dropped us waaaay out on the right flank, 4 or 5 miles from the nearest friendly troops. They sent us there to watch for any attempt by the North Koreans to counter-attack and turn that flank. Believe me, we felt very lonely. Because of rice paddies and terrain, only this one road would allow the North to make that kind of move. We set up our roadblock: 2 .50 cal., jeep-mounted machine guns, and 8 or 10 real nervous marines.


   About 10 or 11 o'clock, during one of those dark, cloudy nights wars seemed filled with, we heard motor-sounds coming up the road; from our side; but, as I said, we felt real nervous. One of the guys shouted the usual "halt! Who goes there?" 2 or 3 times but that motor (no lights of course) kept on getting closer. One of the guys manning the .50s figured they'd got close enough and cranked off about 10 rounds, 2 or 3 of them tracers, about 6 or 8 ft. above the road. The motor sort of wandered off into the rice paddy and stalled. Moments later we heard American voices and relaxed.


   One of those American voices sounded, at first distraught, and then about as mean as any I've ever heard. The owner of the voice raised the act of cursing to levels only heard before in the Old Testament. Off and on, the voice would stop and puking sounds would, for some few moments, replace it. After 5 or 6 minutes, 2 Marine lieutenants from G-2 appeared followed by the twin of that other swamp monster. The guys from G-2 looked dusty and scuffed from having bailed out of their jeep without stopping it first. The swamp monster, it turned out, had spent time with our outfit in the past. One of those news-guys who moved around looking for death and terror. He'd hitched the ride with the G-2 guys to visit us and see if we'd gin him up some exciting copy. I bet he felt some terror that night.


   He cussed and shouted; telling us even our mothers would hate us when he finished dragging our names through the mud. That guy had vigor when it came to raising hell. We couldn't very well stay on alert for our foes movements with him making so much noise. Our C.O. got some guys to 'volunteer' to take him to the near-by village where he could clean up at the village well. We had, between us, enough extra clothes to replace his very icky duds.


   You guessed it; he bailed out of that jeep right into one of the ever present, roadside honey-pots. Somehow he missed the concrete sides and emerged sullied but unbruised. He hung out with us for a couple of days. I swear I could still smell him if he got close - despite 2 or 3 baths. We never let on we could smell him, but no one hung real tight with him, newspaper reporter or no newspaper reporter. We all wanted our mamas to see our names in the paper but not at that cost. Lucky for us and much to his disgust, the North Koreans never moved our way.


   Romance did not put in more than brief, imaginary appearances during my time in Korea. I recall hundreds (probably dozens) of Marines flashing Maggie Higgins as she drove around an airport in or near Seoul we'd ended up camped at. I don't think that counts as romance, even taking the situation and the terrain into consideration.


   One of our sergeants ended up in the same hole with Maggie during the landing on Wolmi-Do. He reported that she kept insisting that he get up and attack the enemy. He told her that if she wanted the fucking enemy attacked she could do it herself.


   I wish that I'd ended up in a hole with Maggie. I admired her. I believe I would've done heroic deeds if she had stood by taking notes. She would’ve made a better Marine than me.


   After the campaign for Seoul ground down to an occupation the whole company came down with what we identified as dengue fever. Believe me, it felt fatal. I swilled paregoric like Budweiser had bottled it. You don't want me to draw you a picture.


   We managed to stay in a comfortable alcoholic purgatory till the symptoms became an evil smelling memory. Seoul had several breweries. The Engineers used pumps to remove the beer from huge vats. (After all, it would've only spoiled.) Whoever of us could drive a jeep would pull a trailer filled with empty 5-gallon cans to the nearest brewery and fill 25 5-gallon jerry cans with beer. We'd sign for it with names like the 125th underwater mess gear repair battalion, or the 75th balloon observation squadron. Good beer.


I was wounded by shrapnel and gunshot during the pull out from Koto-Ri. By chance (Bad Karma), I ended up the third to the last Marine out of Koto-Ri. I did not look forward to those next few hours. The first few lines of an old song kept streaming through my mind: "Oh how I hate to see the evening sun go down." I used to hum them in the late afternoon when the Corsairs headed home. I got wounded early but managed to keep moving and shooting.


Koto-Ri sat at the top of a long, steep valley that dropped, with very steep walls down to roughly sea level. About 3 or 4 miles below Koto-Ri a bridge connected the top half of the road to the bottom half. Without that bridge, the Chinese could only send handfuls of troops against us. Recon. Co. had the job of holding back the Chinese troops long enough to let the division get across the bridge. When the radio brought the word that the division had passed and we could break contact, we hurried.


Words cannot convey the relief I felt when I walked across that bridge or, a few minutes later, when the bridge broke into a lot of little pieces and dropped into the valley. I didn't move under my own power for the next month or two. I locked up tight within minutes after I laid down. Adrenaline can do great things for a man in combat.


Friendly hands hoisted me and other wounded onto a tank where the exhaust would keep us warm. Later, those friendly hands transferred me to a jeep and then to a train which hauled lots of wounded down to the harbor. Landing craft ferried us out to the hospital ship, a converted dependent's transport. They operated on me during the night; took me, the next morning, ashore to an airport and flew me, along with many others, to Japan. The war had ended for me.


As I said, I ended up on the deck of the hospital ship that stood by off the coast. Me and another hundred or so guys. They could tell I wouldn't die in the near future so I pretty much got ignored while they took care of the guys who might. Chaplains hovered about, eager to give final rites and that sort of thing. One of the chaplains, Catholic, knelt down by my stretcher and whispered, "Son, can I do anything for you?" I had one urgent need. I whispered back: "Duck, Padre, duck. Get a duck." He didn't know what I meant. He thought I'd started to lose touch. "Duck, Padre, duck", I whispered fiercely. "Tell the corpsman. He'll know".


Looking doubtful, he stood up and wandered around till he got one of the corpsmen to listen. He pointed at me, and said something about I wanted a duck.


The corpsman handed him one of those odd-looking things and hurried on. The Padre came back looking confused. He knelt down.
"I can't move Padre. I'll piss my pants soon. I need to piss in that." He had to unbutton my 3 or 4 layers of clothes, unwashed for 2 months and full of blood, pull my pecker out and put it in the duck. I filled it twice. The first time he stood up, looking lost. "Over the side Padre", I whispered. He came back and drained some more.


After he dumped the second load he came back and asked me again if he could pray with me or for me. I told him he'd done all he could for me; go help someone else. He wandered off with the duck. I sure hope he found some one who needed to pray instead of piss.


   I spent a few months in the Naval Hospitals at Yokosuka and Otsu, Japan, patiently manufacturing scar tissue.   They sent me home after that and I finished out my Marine career at Quantico, in the Western Union and teletype office, and at The Opa Locka Marine Corps air station in Florida doing routine communications work.


Corpsmen, on battlefields, expose themselves to awful danger to take care of the wounded. We saw them all as heroes. They have to find, somewhere, extra strengths and extra courage to do their job. Both the corpsmen assigned to our outfit did things above and beyond the call of duty. Both got hurt real bad. They've got special seats for corpsman in Valhalla.



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Reconnaissance Company - Marines