DoD commemorates 60th anniversary of Korean War

DoD commemorates 60th anniversary of Korean War

WASHINGTON (Army News Service, June 24, 2010) -- The Department of Defense began its commemoration of the 60th anniversary of the Korean War in the Pentagon courtyard June 24, honoring veterans in attendance and the more than 37,000 who died in the three-year war.

Under Secretary of the Army Dr. Joseph Westphal, the ceremony's keynote speaker, commended Korean War veterans, saying their efforts ensured the continued alliance with South Korea, "an honored friend."

"The Korean War thwarted the expansion of communism in Asia, introduced the helicopter to the United States armed forces, advanced the battlefield treatment of the wounded, and saw the desegregation of our Army," Westphal said. "From that war, the Republic of Korea has emerged as a vibrant democracy, an economic giant in Asia, and a strong, independent and respected voice among nations."

Han Duk-soo, ambassador of the Republic of Korea, said the freedom won for Korea by American veterans allowed Korea to promote freedom as well.

"Korea is expanding its role to promote peace, stability and prosperity beyond the Korean Peninsula. We are working alongside the United States in such places as Iraq, Afghanistan and the waters of Somalia to further peace and freedom," Duk-soo said. "Through your bravery and sacrifice, you veterans made that possible."

Westphal honored former Sgt. Ronald Rosser, who was awarded the Medal of Honor and the Purple Heart for his heroics in the Korean War, and David Mills, a prisoner of war.

In January 1952, Rosser was a 22-year old Cpl. when his infantry regiment, assaulting fortified enemy hills, was stopped by heavy fire. Rosser, a forward observer, disregarded enemy fire as he killed numerous enemy Soldiers while assaulting bunkers and crossing open terrain several times to obtain more ammunition.

Rosser, who attended the ceremony, expressed sorrow for the lack of recognition his fallen comrades received from the American public.

"I think it's appropriate the American government and the Korean government recognize what we did a long time ago. A lot of Americans are still over there that were with us. You wouldn't believe how many. I think there's still about 8,000 MIA," Rosser said.

New York Congressman Charles Rangel, whose service in the Korean War earned him a Purple Heart and Bronze Star, echoed Rosser's sentiments.

"Those 37,000 people could never be forgotten by us. Every accolade, every honor that we receive, we know that the people of Korea are trying to identify us because they don't know the rest of the people who fought and died for freedom in that country," Rangel said.

Westphal thanked Rosser, Rangel and all veterans of the Korean War for their service.

"Our military has always been defined by their courage and character, and their incredible optimism about our country and its value. You, our Korean War veterans, are examples of that courage and character."

Soldiers stationed in Korea exhibit the same admirable qualities today, Westphal said.

"The 28,500 U.S. servicemen and women who are stationed in the peninsula today under the exceptional leadership of General Walter Sharp, exemplify our continuing commitment to the Republic of Korea," he said.

Veterans, servicemembers and members of the audience attended a reception with refreshments following the ceremony.

The ceremony marked the beginning of a three-year Department of Defense observance of key events of the Korean War that will culminate with the 60th anniversary of the signing of the armistice on July 27, 2013.

I spent many cold night on the DMZ don’t forget we have soldiers standing guard there right now.

[quote="stanmaxkolbe, post:2, topic:203267"]
I spent many cold night on the DMZ don’t forget we have soldiers standing guard there right now.


May God bless you, Stan, as well as all the other young men and, now, women, who stand on that line between good and evil--literally.

And may God continue to bless all those young men, some who have now passed away, who fought in that forgotten war, including my Uncle Louis A. Ragus, USN (RIP).

For those who paid the ultimate price, their lives, for our freedom--and, yes, this war helped to stop the advance of Communism and all its evils--may they rest in the Arms of Our Lord.

My Mom is always a little sad on her birthday, because the Korean War started on her 20th birthday, and she lost two boyfriends there.

My dad was a Korean vet. he never really spoke about the experience, so we knew it was probably real bad.

Thanks to all the vets out there! We all appreciate your sacrifice and your service.

[quote="stanmaxkolbe, post:2, topic:203267"]
I spent many cold night on the DMZ don’t forget we have soldiers standing guard there right now.


Thank you Stan. Thanks especially to those who fought in the war, those who've had friends and family die in the war, and for those who've helped to maintain the ceasefire. I've got a number of Korean friends who would not have had the pleasure to have otherwise, nor would have the South gained as much prosperity and way of life. It is good to hear the president of South Korea thanking the soldiers. It may have been the Forgotten War, but it is not forgotten by all.

[quote="JohnnyK, post:4, topic:203267"]
My dad was a Korean vet. he never really spoke about the experience, so we knew it was probably real bad.


Absolutely. I'm a veteran but never saw combat. Nonetheless, everything I have heard indicates that people who have seen combat are not likely to talk about it. It simply is too much.

Thank you Stan for supporting the US, and the free world. It is good, if not essential, to remember those who have been willing to put their lives on the line to protect our way of life.

As I said before on these boards I’m so blessed that you the American people gave me the honor to serve. I was a stupid seventeen year old punk kid high school dropout and this great country gave me a chance because I had nowhere to go. With the Army and the Good Lord putting a Holy Boot in my rear it made a man out of me—I thank God and You for it.

As most of you know I’m very close to Koreans check out my photos.

I thank God that after over twenty years in the military I don’t have a scratch; well one I rode a bicycle into a monsoon ditch and cut up my arm I still have the scar from that—lesson learned don’t drink beer and ride a bike. :D

I had to pay the Korean man I rented it from for the front wheel I bent and the scratches on the bike if I remember 10,000 won? It was 1974 so who cares!

Every Christmas I think of the DMZ in Korea because I was eighteen years old then and is was very cold—and it seemed everyone forgot we have soldiers over there beside the ROK military protecting our freedom.

The ROK also had armed forces fighting beside us in Vietnam and beside us today they are one of our best allies a lot of Americans don’t know this—I would be proud to serve beside a Korean soldier anytime.

Brothers and Sisters the real hero’s never came home standing up—our troops today I’m so proud of them and it’s Americans like you that give them the morals that they will volunteer to put their lives in harms’ way for a stranger.

Thank you for your comments I’m so humbled and don’t deserve it. Give praise to God He was the One that did it; with your help.

Thank you for posting.

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