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Chosin - The Korean War 60th Anniversary

Updated on July 26, 2017

The Chosin Reservoir - The Forgotten War

This is the 60th anniversary of the Korean War Armistice; The War America forgot to remember! Let's remember the Korean war, the war that had an inconclusive end, 60 years ago.

I didn't know much about this war until I went to Washington, D.C. and saw the outstanding Korean War Memorial. It was so moving. And then something happened at a family reunion that started a dialog which peaked my curiosity. I am sharing some of the information I have gathered with you on this page.

Freedom is not Free

CC photo by mahphotography

Colder Than Hell

My former neighbor was a Marine at Chosin Reservior. One of the stories he told me about was how cold he was! He said it was "Colder than Hell!"

This close-focus combat memoir is a chilling story of a Marine rifle company in the uncertain early days of the Korean War. Marine lieutenant Owen's powerful descriptions of close combat in the snow-covered mountains of the Chosin Reservoir, in "blood-splotched snow" with the temperature at 25 degrees below zero, and of the survival spirit of his marines provide a gritty real-life view of frontline warfare.

Korean War Memorial Washington, D.C. - by Connecticut Bloggers'

Korean War Memorial Washington D.C. Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-ND 2.0)
Korean War Memorial Washington D.C. Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-ND 2.0) | Source

Korean War Veterans Memorial Stamp

Korean War Veterans Memorial Stamp
Korean War Veterans Memorial Stamp

National Korean War Veterans Armistice Day

"...a day especially set aside to ensure America remembers the valiant sacrifices and the patriotic service of the Korean War veterans." ~Congressman Rangel

Press Release July 27, 2010

"On Tuesday, the stars and stripes will be flown across our great nation in their honor, as a result of President Obama's enactment of the Korean War Veterans Recognition Act, which became Public Law (111-41) last year after it unanimously passed in both chambers of the U.S. Congress.

At the National Korean War Memorial on the morning of the Korean War Veterans Armistice Day, July 27, 2010, hundreds of veterans, their friends and families, members of the U.S. Armed Services, and foreign dignitaries will pay tribute to all those who served in Korea, and lay wreaths for the fallen who never made it back home. Among those in attendance are members of the Korean War Veterans Association, who have gathered in Washington, D.C., for their 2010 Convention and Gathering to mark the occasion.

Sixty years ago, war broke out on the Korean Peninsula, when North Korea invaded the South on June 25, 1950. Before the ceasefire three years later, 1.8 million Americans had served in Korea and the region, more than 54,000 had been killed, more than 103,000 wounded and up to 8,176 listed as missing. Today, there's no peace treaty ending the war, and 28,500 American soldiers are still stationed in South Korea, guarding democracy's eastern flank.

Despite the great loss of life in such a short time, Korea 'a so-called United Nations conflict sandwiched between World War II and Vietnam War' was simply forgotten. I hope the flags displayed on this day would remind Americans to remember and recognize the Korean War veterans of a war that has yet to end."

37,000 US troops were killed – around one in 10 of the Americans sent to Korea.

Evacuation at Hungnam

"In the greatest evacuation movement by sea in US military history, a massive 193 ship armada assembled at the port and evacuated not only the UN troops, but also their heavy equipment and the Korean refugees. The last UN unit left at 2:36 p.m. on 24 December, and the port was destroyed to deny its use to the Communists."

See The Battleship USS Missouri


My Dad was on one of the rescue boats and my mom's uncle was one of the one's rescued. Neither of them knew of this connection until 50 years later.

Let me know if you want to hear this story.

Or Did You Know Someone That Was?

Were You At Chosin?

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Evacuation of Hungnam, 24 December 1950, USS Begor

Evacuation of Hungnam, 24 December 1950, USS Begor
Evacuation of Hungnam, 24 December 1950, USS Begor

"During the Evacuation of Hungnam, 24 December 1950, USS Begor (APD-127) stands offshore, ready to embark the last UN landing craft, as demolition charges wreck Hungnam's port facilities. US National Archives photo # 80-G-424297, a US Navy photo now in the collections of the US National Archives"

Colin Powell talks about CHOSIN, a documentary film on the Korean War - The Chosin Few

"During his keynote speech for his James Van Fleet award acceptance, presented by the Korea Society, former Secretary of State Colin Powell, talks about the documentary film CHOSIN. An extended trailer was played just prior to his award presentation.


A Documentary Film by Brian Iglesias

Instant video. "Survivors of the Chosin Reservoir Campaign take viewers on an emotional and heart-pounding journey through one of the most savage battles in American history."


CHOSIN: A Documentary Film - by Brian Iglesias

CHOSIN is the only documentary film on the Chosin Reservoir Campaign of the Korean War. Produced by Iraq War veterans led by Brian Iglesias and Anton Sattler."

"During the Korean War, in the winter of 1950, 15,000 U.S. troops were surrounded and trapped by 120,000 Chinese soldiers in the frozen mountains of North Korea. Refusing surrender, the men fought 78 miles to freedom and saved the lives of 98,000 civilian refugees."

C. Alexander writes the following about this documentary: "Told from the viewpoint of the last remaining living veterans who took part in one of the most decorated battles in US history, Chosin is an Award winning piece of film making that is a must have for any military veteran, history buff, education program, or true blood American."

Memorial Day - Flowers for my dad

Military Cemetary
Military Cemetary

Korea MIA Story

It's been more than 56 years since a young American soldier named Jimmie Dorser disappeared in the freezing, bloody cauldron that was the battle of the Chosin Reservoir in the Korean War.

Korea MIA Skip ahead a half century

"to when a North Korean farmer was working in a field near the Chosin Reservoir and uncovered some bones. He reported it to authorities, and in 2002 members of the Hawaii-based U.S. Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command were allowed by the North Koreans to excavate the site. Skeletal remains of five Americans were found and sent to Hawaii for possible identification.

The find wasn't unprecedented. Although they're currently suspended, since 1996 U.S. teams have made a number of MIA searches inside North Korea, recovering more than 200 sets of remains, and the North Koreans have handed over about 200 more. Of those, just over 40 have been positively identified.

Meanwhile, Terri Bommarito heard about MIA remains being found in North Korea and contacted the Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office to see if any of them could be her brother. They asked for a DNA sample from her, which she sent.

Then, just before Thanksgiving, Terri and Betty got the word. Their brother had been positively identified as one of the five Americans discovered by the North Korean farmer."

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Korea MIA comes home


OC Register columnist

Uncommon Courage: Breakout at Chosin - Korean War documentary

"Uncommon Courage: Breakout At Chosin" shown on the Smithsonian Channel details a battle, and a war, that are often an afterthought in U.S. history discussions.

The Chosin Reservoir

Korea: The Chosin Few Part 1

Korea: The Chosin Few Part 2

Korea: The Chosin Few Part 3

Korea: The Chosin Few Part 4

Korea: The Chosin Few Part 5

Korea: The Chosin Few Part 6

Please Post Your Thoughts Here - I'd Love To Hear From You

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    • profile image

      BarbaraCasey 5 years ago

      My cousin John, who passed away recently, was a Canadian Korean War vet. My son's grandad on his father's side was there with the U.S. Army. Wow, 60 years.

    • OhMe profile image

      Nancy Tate Hellams 5 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      I remember that a child in my class in elementary school has his dad come to our class and talk about the Korean War. He came in uniform and I wish I could remember specifics but his talk did make an impression on me. I am embarrassed at how little I do know about this war and appreciate this lens. Thank you to the many who have and do serve our country. I will remember your dad and uncle on this Memorial Day.

    • profile image

      AngryBaker 5 years ago

      Great memory for a war that is often forgotten.

    • Heather426 profile image

      Heather Burns 6 years ago from Wexford, Ireland

      My dad was in the Army and fought in Korea but I don't know what battles, it was before I was born. Then he went back later to help South Korea from when I was 2-4. Awesome lens!

    • Nancy Hardin profile image

      Nancy Carol Brown Hardin 6 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

      Thank you Pat, I am a veteran of the Vietnam War era, not Korea, But I thank you for including me in such esteemed company.

    • BuddyBink profile image

      BuddyBink 6 years ago

      Thank you for the lens. An interesting fact about your father and your mother's uncle.

    • patinkc profile image

      patinkc 6 years ago from Midwest

      @Countryluthier: Thanks, CountryLuthier!

    • patinkc profile image

      patinkc 6 years ago from Midwest

      @julieannbrady: Julie, that must have been a treat. We don't have many of these Vets left.buil

    • Countryluthier profile image

      E L Seaton 6 years ago from Virginia

      Thanks for sharing. For the 50th commemoration of the Korean War, I helped plan a Pusan United Nations Command Commemoration. Thank you for your service in the Korean war. You are an inspiration.

    • profile image

      julieannbrady 7 years ago

      So ... would YOU believe this??? Last night, the Christmas party my mom took me to? It was Korean War Vets!!!!! I felt so YOUNG. Food was good and we had an Irish comedian.

    • patinkc profile image

      patinkc 7 years ago from Midwest

      @PrometheusIV: PrometheusIV, thanks for sharing this about your grandfather.

    • PrometheusIV profile image

      PrometheusIV 7 years ago

      Thank you for this lens. My grandfather was in the Korean war in the Army. While he has passed on, I still think of his sacrifice from time to time.