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August 1, 2003
This week the stories are from two men who fought in Korea and are members of the Oroville Veterans Memorial Park Committee. Bill Connelly and I are Co Chairmen to this committee. For more information call 533- 8147.

Ensign Miller's words on Korea. "I was there, but not in the thick of things as many young boys were. It was terrible times. They were retreating as they were being overrun by superior numbers of Chinese soldiers. I was a member of the Naval Reserve Squadron UR-872, out of Oakland and Moffitt Field, flying Co-Pilot. My job was to ferry the dead out to Japan and ammunition back to the front lines. We used what the Navy classified as R4-D (C47) for this, known to civilians as a DC3. It was so sad, toward nightfall I looked out to the snow covered hills and saw, about 3 miles away, one of our boys wondering looking for some type of cover in the snow. Soon it would be dark, with Chinese all around, I felt so sad and helpless. I knew he wouldn't last the night."
Darby has told me this story before and he still chokes up when he tells it. As I do when I read it. All the time telling me he did nothing, but he did and this writer is proud of him. After 3 years of fighting, the last two-plus years in Peace Talks, that never stopped the fighting, the Armistice was signed right where the war had started, the 38th Parallel.

Ed Ewalt's Story "I was a platoon Sgt. assigned to HQ Co I Bn 187th Airborne Inf. Regt. (Rakkasans). We arrived in Korea in Sept 1950 right on the heels of the Inchon invasion. General MacArthur had decided to execute an all out rapid moving assault on the North Korean Army and drive the 8th US, Army and UN forces straight up through North Korea all the way to the Yalu river bordering China and end the war once and for all. The 1810' airborne Inf Reg. led the invasion with a parachute assault 25 miles north of Pyong Yang, the North Korean capital, at the villages of Sukchon and Sunchon. On 20 Oct 1950 we jumped with 73 planes and approximately 2800 paratroops. We secured our objectives and the UN force caught up and moved through us at which time we withdrew to Pyong Yang. We were in PyongYang until mid December when the Chinese threw in 230,000 "volunteers" and with this over-whelming force began pushing back the 8th Army and UN forces. Our (187th Rgt) mission was to guard the retreating forces from attack from the right and left of the main withdrawal route. It was mid winter, bitter cold: our cold weather gear had not caught up with us. Many rather large enemy units had been bypassed by MacArthur's force on the way north and were fully intact and were anxious to attack the withdrawing force. We endured bitter cold weather, nightly attacks and the loss of 3 or 4 men killed everyday on our patrols. We had some tough battles in the months to come but this period of time was particularly miserable because of the mountainous terrain, the bitter cold, and snow storms with inadequate clothing. On 28th March 1951, we made a second parachute assault just north of the 38th parallel in Mun Sun Ni valley, spear heading an attack by our 1st corps, but that is another story. Ed has so many stories; His Military Career has lasted 31 years and three wars.

Stu's notes:
Claude Holt, did this man live in the Oroville Area? Joe Wilson thinks so and gave me his name. Once I have a name I usually can find something about the person. Joe remembered he was probably from Reeds Springs Missouri. So I used that magic #411. That helped so much on the Dam Memorial. I found Nelson J. Holt, 83 year old retired post master. He recalled Claude and remembered he was missing in Korea (along with 8,000 other brave American Soldiers). Remember the P.0.W./M.I.A. flag. It really represents these men that will probably be missing for eternity. Nelson said he was sure Claude had lived in the Oroville Area. His parents also, their names were Troy and Lucile Holt. He said they did have a service in Reed Springs for Young Claude.

Sgt. Deborah 1. Shaner is still stationed somewhere in Iraq.