Chapter 14



Service Details

Allan Limburg was born in 1929 and educated at North Sydney Boys HighSchool and the Royal Military College (RMC), Duntroon. On graduation from RMC he wasposted to 2 RAR at Puckapunyal and then as a Platoon Commander (Lieutenant) to 3 RAR inKorea.. A career ordnance officer, he later held a number of infantry appointments asSignals Officer & Adjutant of the Pacific Islands Regiment (PNG) 1954-1955,Instructor, School of Infantry, Seymour 1956-1958.. He assumed a number of seniorappointments in Australia and overseas before retirement as Commander 3rd Supply Group,Victoria 1973-1974 and Colonel Supply, Headquarters Supply Division 1975-1977. In 1962Allan was appointed the Northern Territory's Director for the Royal Visit in 1963 and wasinvested by Her Majesty The Queen as a Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (CVO). Heretired as a Colonel and lives at Wheelers Hill in Victoria.


"Keep Yer 'Ead Down"

After graduation from Duntroon in 1951, I was posted to the 2ndBattalion Royal Australian Regiment (2 RAR) at Puckapunyal, where we underwent hard,intensive training for the Korean War which had waged relentlessly since June 1950. On 1stAugust 1952 I emplaned in Sydney for the flight to Iwakuni in Japan, with stop-overs atDarwin and Manila. Following further vigorous battle inoculation training at theCommonwealth Division Battle School at Haramura in Japan, I traveled on S.S. Poyang toPusan in Korea and entrained for the trip northwards to the battle zone. What would lifebe like there? How would I acquit myself on active service?

3 Battalion Royal Australian Regiment (3 RAR) had been in action sinceSeptember 1950 and had taken a leading part in many significant actions in the fluid, attimes fast moving war. It had fought all the way to the Manchurian border, been drivenback into South Korea after China poured troops into the fray, then attacked north againover the 38th Parallel, losing almost 300 men killed, wounded or missing before the Battleof Kapyong. In April 1951, it had distinguished itself at Kapyong, where it suffered 92casualties, and at Maryang San in October, where its casualties in the bloody fightingwere a further 109. After all the months of rapid movement the war then settled down to 22months of protracted, savage, trench warfare, along the Jamestown Line, reminiscent ofGallipoli and France in the first World War, with mud, blood, heat, ice and snow. It wascharacterized by the holding of high ground, deep trenches, dugouts, heavy artillery andmortar duels, thick barbed wire entanglements, minefields, patrolling into no man's land,raids onto both sides and occasional large scale battles. This story is an attempt to givesome understanding of life in the trenches in Korea in 1952 and 1953.

In August 1952, it was Autumn in Korea. I had traveled forward to AEchelon (forward administrative area in front of B echelon) of 3 RAR, some miles behindthe front line. The loud, steady, persistent, rumbling thunder from the artillery duelsbeing fought went on non stop, by day and night. At A Echelon I saw my good friend,Lieutenant "Bill" Harrington, asleep under a mosquito net. What a distressingsight, death warmed up! He was gaunt, thin and completely exhausted. He had gone on patrolover a river deep into Chinese lines. It was raining heavily. On return, it was notpossible to cross it. For the next three days the Chinese chased them. They finallydiscarded all their clothes, weapons and radio preparatory to swimming across the swollenriver, but then decided to proceed further west through Chinese lines, beyond the Samichonriver and the Hook, then across no man's land into the American Marines lines, whoclothed, fed and returned them by jeep. They were returned by helicopter. Looking at Bill,I wondered what lay ahead of me.

Lieutenant Colonel "Ron" Hughes, my Commanding Officer, ahard taskmaster, said to me, "If France was a general's war, Korea is now a platooncommander's. Most actions are at that level. It is hard, brutal and unremitting. The livesof your men and your own will depend on your diligence and skill. I am sending you to ourforward company. You'll get little sleep. Keep your head down." He also told me thattwo of my friends had been recently wounded while leading patrols, and one, Lieutenant"Laurie Ryan", had been killed.

Two other members of Laurie's patrol had also been killed and tenothers wounded. The exposed route forward was under close observation from the Chinese,nicknamed "Charlie". Every man I passed said, "Keep yer 'ead down,mate", a cry I would often hear in the months ahead. I rapidly learned to go toground when incoming shells were going to land close by. Very gingerly I picked my wayforward down the exposed ridge line and reported to Major Ralph Sutton, my companycommander, in his deep bunker or "huchi".

I was allotted, initially, to 7 Platoon. My platoon sergeant there, JimPashen, was an impressive, giant of a man, with a large moustache. We both lived in thesame huchi. Our huchi was strongly built below ground with thick timber uprights, a solidtimber roof covered with about four feet of dirt and rocks and its entrance and approachtrench sandbagged. We were in range of Charlie's machine guns, mortars and artillery. Thedays were hot. During the day we wore only boots and a pair of underpants. A bottle ofAsahi beer came up daily for each soldier with the American C7 rations which we cookedover small stoves in our huchi. I was astonished to find that 27 of my 40 men didn'tdrink.

The battalion had a large force of "Noggies" (Koreanporters), allocated for carrying our supplies of water, rations, barb wire, mines, steelpickets, heavy timber and ammunition from A echelon into our forward positions. They did agreat job under tough combat conditions. Ammunition and defence materials had beenarriving since the position was first occupied 10 months ago. We now had enough ammunitionand grenades to supply a small army. But it posed a problem. Stacked into fighting pitsand trenches it was exposed to the elements. What with winter snow and ice, high summerhumidity and heavy rains much of it was now rusting and was unfit for use. A great effortwas required to clean and maintain it.

A few days later, Major Sutton said, "I'm sending you to the sharpend to take over 9 Platoon. It's pretty rough there. You'll be right under Charlie's nose.Should he attack you'll be the first to cop it. Expect him to attack at any time. You'llbe bloody busy. You can expect to go on patrol every second or third night. Keep your headdown and good luck." It was a dangerous trip forward. On arrival my platoon sergeant,"Nipper" Neylan, a man of few words, said, "Glad you've joined us Skipper.Charlie shoots at anything that moves. Keep yer 'ead down."

Behind Enemy Lines

9 Platoon, 3 RAR was then the most forward platoon of the battalion inthe static warfare waged on the "Jamestown" Line. It was securely dug-in on ahill, overlooking a valley containing a tributary of the Samichon River. Beyond it, atsome distance, lay Hill 166, an imposing feature, heavily defended by the Chinese inbunkers reputed to be up to 30 or 40 feet deep. In front of Hill 166, a long communicationtrench ran forward to a lesser feature, also heavily defended by the Chinese. Behind 9Platoon, along the ridge line, stretched the remainder of C Company. A Company waspositioned on Hill 187, well behind C Company. A British Centurion tank was dug-in, onHill 187, to provide supporting fire.

To the west of 9 Platoon, there lay an undefended feature, overlookingthe valley and the Samichon River. Behind it, on the ridges, was D Company. In betweenwere concentrations of minefields and thick wire obstacles. Likewise, on the low ground,east of 9 Platoon, were further minefields and wire obstacles, separating it from thebattalion on its flank. Much further east, lay the commanding heights of Hill 355("Little Gibraltar").

More minefields and wire were in front of and to the flanks of ourposition. We had call on the great weight of divisional and corps artillery fire andaircraft and tank support. We all lived in deep, well constructed bunkers (or"huchis"), with about 4 feet of overhead cover. Deep trenches connected allweapon pits, some with overhead cover. My huchi was situated just rear of the crest line.The lengthy track forward to 9 Platoon, from Hill 187 was exposed to enemy observation andfire during daylight. At night, many of the battalion patrols came down this track whichsplit into two, just to the rear of my huchi. One track ran forward, down each side of ourfeature, to the minefields gaps, through which our patrols had to pass. The gaps wereguarded by standing patrols. The tracks forward and through the minefields, were wellworn. The Chinese knew that many of our patrols moved along these tracks with the comingof last light each night. Consequently, each evening, they regularly subjected our platoonto heavy concentrations of artillery and mortar fire.

Australian troops have always been noted for their aggressivepatrolling in many wars. They were to put these years of expertise to great effect inKorea. While 1st Commonwealth Division became renowned in Korea for its intensivepatrolling, there was no other battalion that patrolled in such numbers, or aseffectively, as 3 RAR. On average, every night, 3 RAR had about two hundred men on patrolsforward of its position - in 2 or 3 man listening patrols, in standing patrols, or inambush or fighting patrols, each up to about eighteen men in strength.

For this particular patrol, I had reported back to the BattalionCommand Post for a briefing. It included a detailed study of aerial photographs of theenemy positions The aim of the patrol was to get to the long communications trench snakingforward from Hill 166, observe what movement took place along it and, if possible, snatcha prisoner. To get there we had to go down the east flank of our position, through theminefield gap, across the old paddy fields, cross the tributary of the Samichon River, gouphill along the valley between the forward enemy position and its neighbour and thenupwards towards Hill 166.

We knew that, like us, the Chinese each night would position standingand other patrols along the route we would take and that we may have to traverse theirminefields to get to our objective. The aerial photos had revealed the remains of adeserted farmhouse and outbuildings on the route we could take behind their forwardpositions. While we clearly marked out minefields with 3 strand wire fences, the enemy didnot. Their practice was to mark them with stones, if at all, making it extremely difficultto locate them. We knew that if we made any untoward noise, particularly after we hadpassed beyond their forward positions, they would doubtless send an ambush or fightingpatrol to cut off our return. We thus had to move very slowly and cautiously. A newpassword and countersign was issued daily so that any movement could be challenged and todifferentiate friend and foe. It was also used to prevent our own patrols firing on eachother.

I had carefully chosen two of my best men to accompany me, Private"Bob" Weston and Private Frank Tiernan who carried and operated the radio set.We each carried our personal weapons, spare magazines and ammunition and had grenades onour belts. We favoured Owen guns for use in close quarter night fighting because of theirlightness and reliability. Using the radio, we had call on very formidable artillery, tankand mortar fire. We could also maintain close contact with company headquarters. However,it was dangerous using it when in close proximity to the enemy, as it could readily betrayour position. In addition, the headphones posed an added risk to Frank, as they hinderedhis hearing. We carried rope and cloth to tie and gag a prisoner - if we could take one.With the aid of binoculars we spent some time studying, planning and memorizing our route.Prominent landmarks, trees and the like, are very useful for maintaining direction but,while they are very obvious in daylight, they can prove difficult to locate at night. Werehearsed how we might take a prisoner.

We set off from the rear of our position, just before last light, downthe track to our eastern minefield gap. After clearance through our standing patrol, westarted across the old, wet, paddy fields. After wading the stream, we moved uphilltowards the valley to the east of the forward enemy positions. We slowly skirted aroundwhere we thought they maintained a standing patrol at night. As we began climbing weencountered considerable thick undergrowth, which slowed our progress. We saw what wethought were stones marking a minefield and diverted past them.

By the time that we got to the site of the old farmhouse, the going wasbecoming more difficult, as the undergrowth became even thicker. Noise was the problem. Inthe dark, we stumbled into old cooking pots, fences and the like. We now had to move veryslowly ........... stopping ...... and listening ...... at regular intervals. It took muchlonger than we had planned, to clear this area and move beyond it, up to the communicationtrench high on the ridge. It was some time after midnight before we reached it. There wasno movement along it when we got there. To be certain that it was not used at this time ofnight, we stayed close to it and observed for some considerable time. We mentallyrehearsed our plan for taking a prisoner and for getting him back to our lines, withoutalerting the enemy, a difficult feat. Finally, seeing no one we decided to return. But, onmaking our way back through the area of the farmhouse, despite our precautions, we madesome noise. As a result, it wasn't long before we heard movement of an enemy patrol,clearly dispatched to prevent our return. We could hear it moving down the hill, fromtheir forward position, towards where we had earlier started our climb up from the stream,blocking our return.

From time to time we could hear them talking softly to each other. Wethus had, more than ever, to move with extreme caution, making no sound. This we did, butit was painfully slow.

We were, finally, able to crawl, very slowly, past their position andsurprisingly were not challenged. Why? ...... There are many strange noises in the nightin these parts, including the movement of small mountain bears and other nocturnalanimals. That, together with the fact that we were so far behind their lines, close todaybreak, which was unusual, must have added to their uncertainty. That, and our veryslow, noiseless movement, was probably our salvation. They did not fire and we were able,finally, to get past them. However the sun would soon be up. We clearly could notundertake the return trip, through low lying, open country, without being observed andfired upon. We therefore chose an area of thick grass, near the stream, where we lay allday, without lifting our heads, without moving and without food. We knew that, as nightapproached, we would have to return to our own lines, not knowing what friendly patrolswere coming our way and not knowing what the new password was. So, once again, we had tomove slowly and carefully. But word of our plight had obviously been passed and we wereable to return past our patrols and through the minefield, without incident.

Imagine our surprise, on returning to my huchi, to find that NormanHertford, a War Correspondent Photographer from "Pix" magazine, was awaiting usthere. He had been doing a feature article on 3 RAR during the day and had requestedspecial permission to come forward, interview and photograph us, on our return that night.His story and photographs were later published in "Pix" on 13th December 1952.While we who took part, can remember, in great detail, that particular patrol, it was onlya part, and a very small part, of the vigorous and heavy patrolling effort undertakennightly by 3 RAR, a unit in which we were proud to serve. I subsequently read that, in aperiod of 12 months in the Jamestown Line, the two Australian battalions took only oneChinese prisoner.


While 1st Commonwealth Division became renowned for its intensivepatrolling in Korea, no other battalion patrolled in such numbers, or as effectively, as 3RAR. Every night we had about 200 men on patrols forward of our position, in 2 or 3 manlistening patrols, in standing patrols, or in ambush or fighting patrols, each up to about18 men in strength. We were ambushed on one patrol behind enemy lines, but managed toextricate ourselves unscathed.

"Charlie" (the Chinese enemy) was adept at effectivelylobbing just one mortar bomb at us, right on target, a very difficult feat because of itslong beaten zone. With complete air supremacy and rapid communications to our guns andplanes, we could quickly respond to any enemy mortar or artillery pieces hidden in tunnelsdug into the reverse sides of the hills. When they wanted to harass us they would trundlea mortar out on rails, fire one or two rounds, then rapidly retreat into the tunnel beforewe could reply. They became proficient at lobbing one mortar bomb on target. One day oneof my lads foolishly went down the hill to a small stream, for a wash. One mortar bomblanded just a few feet from him, shredding most of his body. I was one of the first toreach him. He was a terrible mess. I gave him an injection of morphine. We got a stretcherto him. The long, exposed trip back would be a very dangerous one, between two minefields.But, there was no shortage of volunteers. It was a long haul back and over to the DCompany camouflaged jeep-head, nearer than ours. We expected to be machine gunned ormortar bombed at any minute, but lucky for us, we weren't. Maybe the Chinese feltcompassion for our casualty. Bill Harrington, who had rejoined us, commanded 8 Platoon,just behind our position. One day Charlie dropped just one mortar bomb on one of hishuchis occupied by two of his lads. They were both killed. Three other members of hisplatoon were wounded from mortar fire. On another day a New Zealand artillery officerdecided to come forward to visit us in daylight. Instead of keeping his head down bytaking the longer, safer track below the ridge line, he took the top, very exposed track.They opened up on him with a machine gun. He was hit in both legs.

In mid August, B Company carried out a night raid onto an enemyposition on Hill 75 to our left front, under covering fire from our tanks, machine guns,mortars and artillery. At least 12 Chinese were killed and one taken prisoner. We lost 1killed, 24 wounded and 2 missing. Lieutenant John Humphrey was wounded while leading hisplatoon.

During August and September, 3 RAR and 1 RAR on our right flank wereinvolved in several ferocious patrol actions. On the night of 22/23 August Captain"Phil" Greville was taken prisoner while leading a work party repairingminefield fences, one of his men was killed and 6 were wounded. On the night of 26/27August Lieutenant "Jack" Skipper was wounded when his ambush patrol killed 5Chinese.

Soldiers can be cruel. Back in the comparative safety of our jeep-headwas our company clerk. Our diggers would pick on him, saying he was a "chook",never going on patrol. He took it to heart. One day, he walked all the way forward into noman's land. Charlie opened up on him. Deciding to return, our side, not knowing who hewas, also opened up on him. Amazingly, he got back unscathed. He wasn't picked on afterthat. Every night, in addition to providing two standing patrols on the minefield gaps andother patrols, half my platoon were always awake, armed and standing-to in their pits, incase we were attacked. As if we didn't have enough to do, we also had to send largeparties to the rear to dig reserve positions all day, in case we were overrun in ourforward positions. It was hard, tiring work, as was the regular maintenance of ourtrenches and fire pits. As the enemy often attacks just before first light we all stood-toin our pits for one hour every morning.

Two battalion snipers were allocated to my platoon. They kept theenemy's heads down during the day. One day, while firing at them, they were amused to seeCharlie waving a shovel from side to side, signaling a "washout", "you'vemissed me". A prime aim of both sides in defence is to stop the enemy gettingsupplies to their forward troops. Charlie could not replenish his forward positions duringthe day as we overlooked them. He did this at night. Instead of using the difficult routeforward, in his trenches, he preferred to take the easy way, above ground. From under ourcamouflage-netted fire pit, using binoculars, our snipers and I often observed heavilyladen parties of twenty or more Chinese moving forward just on dusk. "Why not have ago at the buggers, Skip?" they asked. To be successful all fire would have to landsimultaneously before they dived into their trenches. I planned a codeword, to call allour fire down. When used over the radio the Kiwi guns opened up first. It took about 24seconds for their shells to land. When the Centurion tank crew heard the artillery shellsoverhead, they commenced firing. Their shot took about 6 seconds. When we heard the shellsmy two 50 calibre machine guns opened up. We used it several times, to great effect.

As Charlie's machine guns could cause great havoc I asked the tankcommander to come forward to our position. Together, we sketched Charlie's positions andallocated codewords to each of the machine gun positions known to us. He returned to histank and silently registered them. Not long after, Charlie mounted an attack on to thefeature on our left. All his machine guns started firing. By calling up each codeword byradio we were able to knock out each machine gun in turn. If the first 20 pounder shelldidn't hit the target, I could quickly correct so that the next one did. On 2/3 September1952, Charlie attacked a 3 RAR patrol, killing one and wounding two, six Chinese werekilled and one was taken prisoner. On 4/5 September Lieutenant "Bill" Patrick'spatrol ambushed forty Chinese. Bill was wounded in the chest, throat and leg. One of hismen had his foot blown off by a grenade, another was killed and one was wounded. Theyaccounted for at least 15 Chinese. On 13/14 September Lieutenant Peter Cliff's 1 RARfighting patrol attacked 20 Chinese, killing two, wounding two and taking one prisoner. On28/29 September Captain John Waterton laid an ambush on our left and stopped over 50Chinese in their tracks, causing heavy casualties, three of his men were wounded. InOctober, Charlie launched a large scale attack onto the 1st Battalion Royal CanadianRegiment on Hill 355, to our right. They overran the forward Canadian positions. Bothsides suffered heavy casualties.

The days and weeks were busy and passed quickly. I could now begin tobetter understand what our forefathers had experienced at Gallipoli and in France. But nowwe were going into reserve for a very welcome rest. My first few months in the trenches inKorea were over. Having kept my head down I was still alive. But what might lie ahead?

The Commonwealth Division remained located for most of that time in thevitally important sector astride the traditional invasion routes to the capital, Seoul,between the US Marine Division on its left and 1st Republic of Korea (1 ROK) Division onits right. It extended from the Hook, across the Samichon River and east to the massiveHill 355 ("Little Gibraltar"). Winter was now firmly upon us.

The countryside was covered in a thick mangle of ice and snow. Freezingwinds howled and moaned down on us from Manchuria. It was bitterly, unbelievably cold. Thedaily temperatures were always below freezing point (0 degrees Centigrade [C]) and bynight average , -16 degrees C. They were often much colder, made worse by the cruel windchill.

The Chinese 47 Field Army had recently relieved their 39 Field Army onthe Commonwealth and 1 ROK divisional fronts. This heralded a period of greatly increasedactivity. 1 RAR had relieved 1 Battalion, Royal Canadian Regiment (1 RCR) on Hill 355. Asthe Canadians had done little patrolling, the Chinese had overrun their forward positions.Defences were in great disrepair. 1 RAR had to embark on an aggressive night patrollingprogram to regain supremacy forward of their fighting pits. This was successful, but at acost of over 50 Australian causalities, including several of my friends while leadingfighting patrols. Lieutenant "Digger" James, who lost his left foot and wasbadly damaged in his right leg; Lieutenant Colin Khan, badly wounded in the chest; Lt EuanBoyd wounded and Lieutenants "Bob" Unsworth and John Seaton, killed. On thenight 25/26 November the Royal Fusiliers (1RF), on the left of 1 RAR, launched an attackonto the Chinese on Hill 227. They were supported by a diversionary attack by two platoonsof 1 RAR, commanded by Lieutenant Euan Boyd and Lieutenant John Sullivan and four werewounded. Sergeant "Des" Corcoran, Euan's platoon sergeant, evacuated thecasualties under mortar fire. The attack by the Royal Fusiliers was a debacle. They wereambushed just as they started and lost 14 killed, 22 wounded and 8 missing.

In early December 1952, Lieutenant Colonel "Bunny" Austen,Commanding Officer of 1 RAR, ordered Major "Joe" Mann to mount a company attackonto the Chinese on the feature "Flora", close to 15 ROK (South Korea) Regiment.It was a difficult undertaking, at night, over icy snow covered ground, in freezingweather. The approach would start from a firm base, established forward of our lines byLieutenant "Bill" Harrington, who commanded 8 Platoon, C Company, 3 RAR. It wasvital that the company approach march was undetected. But, just as they departed atmidnight on the night 10/11 December, a Chinese battalion attacked 15 ROK Regiment.Chinese flares and Allied star shells lit the night sky, exposing and delaying theAustralians who had to go to ground. The attack resulted in 30 Chinese troops killed onFlora, but 22 Australian were wounded and three were missing (one later returned). Two ofBill Harrington's platoon were wounded. The aim of capturing a prisoner was not achieved.

On 28 December 1952 3 RAR relieved 1 RAR on Hill 355. On the night 6/7January Lieutenant "Rus" Lloyd was twice wounded while leading a fightingpatrol. Lieutenant Brian Bousefield, was severely wounded while leading a fighting patrol,which suffered four wounded and three missing. I vividly recall the night of 24/25 Januarywhen Lieutenant Geoff Smith, in command of a patrol of thirty men, was killed. His bodywas never recovered. I had known him well for over five years. Sergeant Morrison took overcommand of the patrol, killing over 80 Chinese in several successive attacks beforereturning to our lines, with 13 missing and 10 wounded.

In March 1953 2 RAR relieved 1 RAR. On 13 may, a patrol led byLieutenant John Duff, clashed with forty Chinese, killing twelve and wounding eight. Oneof his patrol was killed, three were missing and six, including John, were wounded. On 17May, Lieutenant "Ray" Burnard was badly wounded in the chest while checking aminefield fence. On 25 May Lieutenant "Charlie" Yacopetti, was severely woundedwhile leading a seventeen man patrol, which ambushed forty Chinese. He was taken prisoner.Only four of his patrol returned uninjured, two others were missing, eight were woundedand one later died of wounds.

On 9 and 10 July 1953, 28 Brigade took over the "Hook" areafrom the British, (who had suffered 126 casualties there), with 2 RAR on the left and 3RAR on its right. This vital ground was the most threatened in the Commonwealth Divisionin the last three months of the war. In a desperate last attempt to gain more ground theChinese army launched strong attacks, against the Australians on the Hook and against theneighbouring American Marines, in the dying days of the war. At divisional Headquarters(HQ), from aerial photographs, intelligence sources and intercepts of the enemy wirelesstraffic, the forthcoming battle had been accurately predicted for some time. Very detailedpreparations had been made, with tremendous concentrations of all the corps and armyartillery, including that of the two divisions.

On the nights 24/25 and 25/26 July 1953, the Hook battles were foughtthroughout those nights. During that time our artillery accounted for almost 3,000 Chinesebodies, which were left piled two or three deep in front of 2 RAR. Our divisionalartillery alone fired over 23,000 rounds against the Chinese. At 10am on 27 July 1953 thearmistice was signed, effective at 10pm. I paid a visit to the Hook the following day. Thefloor of the valley between the Hook and the Chinese positions was almost covered withdead Chinese. The broken, bloated, fly-blown, bloodied bodies were fast decaying. Aterrible, cloying, overpowering smell of death and decay permeated our battered, smashedtrenches. It was an unbelievable, horrific sight. Immediately after the armistice, my oldfriends Lieutenant Euan Boyd and Private "Des" Guilfoyle, who had both been inthe thick of the 2 RAR battle, had walked, with some trepidation, across the few hundredyards separating them from the Chinese positions, and greeted the opposing Chinesesoldiers, coming to meet them, as part of the Armistice

In 1989 I returned to Korea with a party of Australian Korean Veteransand their wives. We had been invited as guests of the Korean Veterans' Association. OnAnzac Day we conducted a very moving service at, what is now, a very large and beautifulUnited Nations Cemetery, at Pusan. Afterwards, in the large Australian section, we placeda small Australian flag and a poppy on each of the many headstones there. IN 1988, overone million people, including over 80,000 from overseas, visited the cemetery. A few dayslater we laid wreaths at the lovely Australian Kapyong Memorial, situated on a hill,overlooking where 3 RAR made their valiant stand. We were all very touched to learn thatparties of Korean school children regularly maintain both memorials.


After four years training, 32 of my class, which graduated from theRoyal Military College in 1951, served in Korea as platoon commanders. Two of my Duntroonclassmates of 1951 were killed in Korea, ten were wounded and one was taken Prisoner ofWar (POW). Five were awarded the Military Cross (MC) for bravery and three were Mentionedin Dispatches (MID). Five who served in Korea subsequently became Major Generals."Digger" James, despite his horrific wounds, insisted on all other woundedmembers of his patrol being evacuated before him. He was awarded a Military Cross forbravery. Discharged, he trained as a doctor. Despite his disabilities he was accepted backinto the army. He served in Vietnam and later as Director General of Medical Services. Heretired from the army as Major General W B James, AO, MBE, MC, O St J. He is now NationalPresident of the RSL. Lieutenant Colonel Ron Hughes, awarded a Distinguished Service Order(DSO), retired as a Major General. Lieutenant Colonel "Bunny" Austen and Major"Joe" Mann were awarded DSO's. "Bunny" retired as a Brigadier."Bill" Harrington, awarded a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE),retired as Lieutenant Colonel. "Euan" Boyd retired as Lieutenant Colonel, becameVice President of the Victorian Temporary and Permanently Incapacitated (TPI) Association,President TPI Club, awarded an Australian Order of Merit (AOM). John Sullivan retired as aLieutenant Colonel, became Federal Member for Riverina, "Des" Corcoran, awardedMID, became Premier of South Australia. Colin Khan, awarded MID, retired as a Brigadier,"Digger" James, "Jack" Skipper, "Rus" Lloyd, BrianBousefield and "Charlie" Yacopetti were all awarded the MC for bravery."Rus" Lloyd and "Ray" Burnard retired as Brigadiers."Charlie" Yacopetti also awarded MID for outstanding bravery as a prisoner.Sergeant Edward Morrison was awarded a DCM. "Des" Guilfoyle is now the EditorKorean Veterans Association and President of the TPI Club. "Geoff" Smith,awarded MID. Pews in memory of "Geoff" Smith and "Bob" Unsworth werelater dedicated in the chapel at the Royal Military College, Duntroon.


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