Korean War Legacy Project

Kevin R. Dean


Kevin Dean grew up in Tumut, New South Wales, and joined the Australian Army at a young age. He was sent to serve in Korea in 1953 and recalls his introduction to the front line, recounting how a World War II veteran offered him advice to keep his head down and to get used to the smell of the place. He shares his thoughts on the problematic situation of being young, scared, and sleep deprived during war and comments on the difficulties of caring for the wounded. He elaborates on the lead up and immediate after aftermath of the Armistice signing and recounts his return visit years later to a modern Korea. He comments on how generous the South Korean people are and praises them for their efforts to remember veteran sacrifices. He is proud of his service and feels strongly that the Korean War story and the role Australian soldiers played in helping secure South Korea’s freedom need be taught in schools.

Video Clips

Introduction to the Front Line

Kevin Dean recalls how he was introduced to the front line in Korea. He recounts a World War II veteran offering him advice, telling him to keep his head down and to get used to the smell of the place. He shares his thoughts on the problematic situation of being young, scared, and sleep deprived during war. He comments on the difficulties of caring for the wounded.

Tags: 1953 Battle of the Hook, 5/28-29,Chinese,Fear,Front lines,Impressions of Korea,Living conditions,Weapons

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Return to Korea

Kevin Dean comments on his return visit to Korea. He recalls the physical destruction of Incheon during the war and compares it to the modern city into which it has blossomed. He describes Seoul and Busan's progression and shares that the transformation is mind boggling to him. He states that South Korea is one of the only countries in the world that thanks those who helped secure its freedom.

Tags: Busan,Incheon,Seoul,Impressions of Korea,Modern Korea,Physical destruction,Pride,South Koreans

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Armistice Experience

Kevin Dean elaborates on the lead up and immediate aftermath of the Armistice signing. He recounts the positions of the Kiwis, Americans, and Chinese during the final days leading up to the signing and describes the heavy weapon fire. He recalls how calm it was after the signing, sharing that the killing stopped, and he elaborates on the death toll the Chinese suffered. He shares that he and other soldiers near his position narrowly missed a planned Chinese explosion.

Tags: 1953 Armistice 7/27,Seoul,Chinese,Front lines,Impressions of Korea,Weapons

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Video Transcript

[Beginning of recorded material]

K:        My name is Kevin Robert Dean, D E A N,

I:          Um Hm.  And your, could you spell it?

K:        D E A N

I:          And tell me, what is your birthday?]

K:        Seventeenth of December, 1933.

I:          So how old are you now?
K:        Eighty-five.

I:          Wow.   You look great.

K:        Thank you.

I:          Where were you born?

K:        Tumut, New South Wales


Could you spell it?
K:        T U M U T.

I:          T U M U T.

K:        Same way, yes.  Spell it  either way, same way.

I:          And where is, close to where?  Big city life?

K:        Uh. Sydney.

I:          Sydney?
K:        Um hm.

I:          Okay.  Tell me about your family when you were growing up, your parents and your siblings.

K:        Well I, I’m the, I’m the third eldest of four, four children.

I:          Uh huh.




K:        Uh, and two, two of, uh, my eldest sister and my brother after me are both deceased.  Uh, we were, we went from Tumut to Harden, and my father went off to war/ [INAUDIBLE] New South Wales.  He never went overseas.  In fact, he was a, he wasn’t a good soldier.  And then he decided  he would take the 10 children

I:          Um.

K:        to Gladstone, Queensland by train.


We go to Curtis Island on a cattle station.

I:          Cattle station.

K:        What for, I will not know.

I:          Um.

K:        And, uh, then he said when I was 13, he said I got a job for you.  You’re going to [Mounlacka] on a cattle station.

I:          Ha.
K:        I couldn’t ride a horse.  I didn’t know what a cow was or a bull was, anything like that.  But I was so glad.  A strop whip makes a big difference across your back.  They weren’t very good in those days.


We had a pretty rough life actually.  When you’re 13 and you’re on your own and you’re working and then I was doing National Service in those days

I:          Uh huh.

K:        So I’ve got a six month deferment from National Service.  I want to Rockhampton and, and joined the Army.

I:          When was it?

K:        Uh, I don’t, I have no idea.  Um, I think it’d be about A, April, uh, 1952.

I:          Um hm.


And you joined the Army, right?
K:        Yeah, I joined the Army.  But then I had to go from Gladstone to Brisbane, then to go to the Northern Command Personal Depot to be accepted into the Army.

I:          Um hm.

K:        And, uh, being 13 with little education, the reason why I got in the Army is because of the Korean War, because they were looking for three soldiers.  And we did not know anything about Korea.


That’s a question, [INAUDIBLE] wanna go, no.  We might have seen a flash on a newsreel, just a flash.  Cause see, we didn’t have t  his.

I:          Um hm.

K:        We didn’t have papers.  We didn’t  have radios.  Didn’t you, alright?
I:          Yeah.

K:        And all, all that sort of thing, we didn’t know.  So I joined the Army, and I did my recruit training in Enoggera, in Brisbane.  And then we went to Ingleburn,


and they said, uh, May 1953, you go to Japan.
I:          Um.

K:        They didn’t tell where we were going.  We knew then when you were.  It took three days to get to Japan in those days, three days.  Then we go to Japan, then we went to Hiro, Reinforcement Depot, and we went to [HARAMU] Battle School .  Then there was eight of us picked to go to Kurae Military Hospital to become rifle and stretcher bearers.


And, I don’t know why they picked me anyhow, 19 year-old.  We had two weeks’ training.

I:          In Japan.
K:        In Japan at Kurae Hospital, two weeks’ training as a rifleman stretcher bearer.  Then I was taken straight up to the front line in Korea.

I:          So when did you leave from Japan to Korea?

K:        Uh, then about the 30th of July.


And I was put in the front line on the 14th of July.

I:          What, ’53?

K:        Fifty, uh,

I:          Two?

K:        Fifty-three.

I:          Fifty-three.

K:        Yeah.

I:          In July?

K:        In July.

I:          So that was about to, the War about to end.

K:        Yes.

I:          Wow.  So

K:        That’s why I say our battalion and the Second Battalion [INAUDIBLE]

I:          Second Battalion?

K:        Yeah.  Was the lucky battalion.

I:          Ah ha.  What was your company?  Do you have any unit?

K:        Yeah.  I, I was in


Charlie Company Nine Platoon.

I:          Charlie Company

K:        Nine Platoon.

I:          Ninth?

K:        Ninth, on a, on a position called Hill 121.

I:          Hill 121, yeah.

K:        It was part of the Hook.  And, uh, I got introduced up to the front line by a World War II soldier.  He said keep your head down, and he said, and just walk around for a couple of hours and get used to the smell of the place.


But when I  was, when I arrived at, uh, [INAUDIBLE], now, they made me, they put me in a tent for the night.  I was on my own.  Full battle gear, rifle pre-loaded, around me all this firing going on.  I said what have I got myself into?  I had no idea.

I:          Yeah.

K:        No idea.  But we did.  And, uh, I think the biggest problem in, in war is young, you’re scared.


You are scared.  [INAUDIBLE]  It was sleep deprivation was your biggest problem.  It’s been said we’ve got hammered day and night.  Doesn’t matter what time.  When [INAUDIBLE] first went into the lined in about, uh, May or April, 1953 on a position called 159, the Chinese then said to them welcome to [INAUDIBLE].  I hope you do as well as your other battalions.


And that was a shot to those blokes.  Another good thing about [INAUDIBLE] is we got 500 blokes from one area at a preset time.  So they were already battle hardened.  Cause when you’re like me, 19 years old, 5’10” and a bit and skinny as anything, you [AGREE] and then of course you had to look after the wounded.  And, uh, two big blows they made.


They didn’t show us how to use Morphine.  And they didn’t show us how to use, uh, uh, look after the wounded at night.  It was a very hard thing.

I:          Um hm.

K:        So you’re gonna, we got hit.  We were doing wiring, this was before the battle, last battle of the Hook.  We lost three blokes there, and one badly wounded.

I:          How many?

K:        Three blokes, three blokes killed on the wire.  A, uh, more, mortar got us.  And, uh, one bloke,


I, I dragged him back in, and I dragged another bloke in.  He was dead.  I dropped on his feet.  I didn’t know they were mates.  And I gave this bloke Morphine, and he went ha, ha, ha and I thought shit, I’ve killed him.  I killed him.  But he, I ran, I didn’t know.

I:          Um.

K:        In those days, we could not, we could not stretcher them out.
I:          Yeah.

K:        You had to drag them out cause, be careful of the stretcher in a, in a trench.  It was too narrow.


So they, u h, you had to get outside, and somebody takes care of them, takes them out of there, and my job’s to save and stop the bleeding and all that sort of thing.  And it’s a, it was a pretty horrendous thing to be there.

I:          Must be very hard for you because your job is to carry those wounded and so on, right?

K:        Yeah.

I:          So you, you encountered those wounded soldiers and dead soldiers all the time.

K:        Yeah, yea.  I meet them, met them often, often and used to talk to them and I know them well.


Some of them I still know today.  They’re still alive.  There’s not many of us left.  We’re on, we’re, as I say we’re in the Twilight Zone, yeah.  And then, then they got [INAUDIBLE] on the, um, the 24th, uh, 23rd, 24th, 26th of July

I:          Um hm.

K:        and they were firing around about 40 shells a minute on our position with machine guns and, uh, mortar and artillery.


And, uh, in that days, we lost five killed and 27 wounded and two cat coms were killed by shrapnel.  And, uh, we, we really got, we really were getting the  dirty end of the stick, and we had thought, we were ordered to fix [INAUDIBLE] and, and most of the patrols were done at night as Matt said.

I:          Um.


K:        And can you imagine being night time and you got hit or you saw and you had to get them back.  We always found our way back to the front line.  I even think about today.  It’s amazing, isn’t it?  And I think because, like Matt said, we worked in the bush.  We were bushmen.  And, um, we were told in 2003 we had a big reunion for all the [INAUDIBLE] veterans and marched in Brisbane.  The mayor put on a, a [INAUDIBLE] person in town hall.


And the next day we had a big, big party and all the [INAUDIBLE]/  But you, the Korean people, have made us.  It’s not [INAUDIBLE].  You’ve got a beautiful memorial down at Cascade Gardens.  Course, course the RSO’s got the name in the government.  But you people are not that, it’s you, the Korean people, that love us, not them.  We’re just the forgotten mob.  We just went recently to a, a dinner at the, uh, um,


Broadmore, uh, Broadbeach, uh, [INAUDIBLE]  I, uh, uh, as Matt said, I went back to Korea.
I:          When?

K:        In April.

I:          April of

K:        Uh, ’17.

I:          Seventeen.

K:        Yeah, ’17.

I:          Uh huh.

K:        And, uh, I said what do you think of the Taejon?  When I left Korea, that makes me 20 years I left Korea.  So


I:          When did you leave Korea?

K:        Um, the 26th of June, 1954.

I:          I’m sorry?

K:        Twenty-sixth of June, 1954.  I was in Japan on guard duty for a long time and then went back to Australia.

I:          So when you went back to Korea in 2017

K:        It was mind boggling.

I:          Tell me.

K:        You have no idea.  Matt’s been after for years to go.


And I finally went.
I:          Tell me.  What did you see?  What, what’s been

K:        What I remember is that from, from when I was left there 20 years like [INAUDIBLE] said, everything was smashed to bits, bodies everywhere.  And to walk in Inchon which was then MacArthur’s big do in the Korean War, to find the airport there city.  And you walk in and you see Seoul, a city, beautiful.


And then you got Pusan, you call Pus, we call on Pusan, you call Busan, aye?  Same.  you got Kapyong, [INAUDIBLE] Kapyong.  You know, it, it’s, it’s mind boggling, all these bridges and things like this.  And you people paid 50% of my airfare, 30% for my son, you know.  We had three, uh, five-star accommodation, everything for free.  It was only five days.  I couldn’t [INAUDIBLE] all they way because I was too old.  It was really odd.


We were well looked after.  We, we were, I couldn’t get over it.  I will never get over it, seeing people like that.  They’re the only country in the world that thank people like us.  For instance, I’m sorry for the War.  But you people, you’re bloody marvelous.  You are.  Can’t thank you enough.

I:          Sure.  I mean, you fought for us, and we, we want to thank back to you.

K:        Yes.  That’s the way I feel.


To go back after 20 years of age and see what you’ve done and to be told that you went broke one part of it, everybody put their gold in the bank and brought you out of it, you never looked back since.  I drive a Tucson Hyundai.

I :         Yeah.

K:        And Matt’s got a [INAUDIBLE] Hyundai, we drive all them.  I, I just can’t get over the, the generosity of yous.  We arrived there .  It cost us nothing.


We even got to Pusan.  We, we had nothing.  And to see it all changed.  Everything’s changed.  The retirement, the, uh, village that Matt was talking about is all done up.  It’s all there.  I, to me, you were so generous.  And then Seoul’s got the best War memorial I’ve seen.  I’ve been there.  And, uh, it was Busan, we were there and, uh, [INAUDIBLEL] look at this.  I, I couldn’t believe it.


And we went into our room and there’s our War.  You’ve got everything in there. Everything but the kitchen sink.  Oh, it, it is, I, I can’t explain.  But I got off the, off the plane at Inchon and, uh, uh, Korean Airlines down there cause they had us sitting on a board like that  type for 10 hours.

I:          Ooo.

K:        So Bob was very sore.  Anyhow, we got off at Inchon and I looked behind me and there was a Sergeant Major.  Always look at the chest.


He had two rows, [INAUDIBLE].  And he caught up with me.  I said, he said good day, Kevin Dean.  And I stopped.  I said how did you know me?  He said you’re more famous than you think you are.  See, I spent, Matt and I spent over 70 years looking after veterans widows.

I:          Um.

K:        Anyhow, he said would you do me a favor?  And I said what, what do you want, sir?  And he said, um, would you ready to accept that little [BIBLE] on Anzac Day at the Memorial, War Memorial?


I said, uh, no.  But he [INAUDIBLE] back.  I went back to him and said I’d be honored.  And I did.  I did that.  I just couldn’t get over it.  Matt told me all about Korea [INAUDIBLE].  But when you go there, you’ve been there .

I:          When you left Korea, had you ever thought that Korea would become like this today?

K:        No.  Not in that time.

I:          Did you underestimate Korean people?

K:        I never seen much of them.


I:          Um.

K:        See, you couldn’t, the only ones that we seen was the catcoms.  But we did have a, a soldier with us.  He was over on our patrol, the 159.  And this bloke from [INAUDIBLE] and this, uh, Korean soldier disappeared.  We never found them.  They were MIA’s.  So, uh, it, we went to Pusan and looked at the cemetery.  I couldn’t take that.  I broke down.  My son grabbed me.


He took me out.  No, I, you could never imagine the city in, what’s that, 67 years.

I:          Um.
K:        come like you people have done.  [INAUDIBLE]  And your fallout from us veterans of the Forgotten War.  Without you, we would have nothing.

I:          So don’t you think that we have to be able to teach about the War that you fought for with a successful outcome to our young


generation here in Australia?

K:        Yes.  It’s gotta be done.

I:          Gotta be done.
K:        It’s gotta be done.

I:          Yeah.
K:        No one knows anything about it .  Very few people do.  As I mentioned before, it’s all Viet Nam.  When, when the, when the, uh, truce was signed, I will say it, and

I:          How was it?  Tell me the, do you remember that?

K:        You’ve got that right.  We’re getting there.  We’re, we’re [INAUDIBLE].  Like the kids of Wellington just got done, very bad.


And I, we don’t gotta live through this.  We’re gonna die.

I:          Oh.

K:        And, uh, suddenly the, they didn’t tell us.  We had an idea it was on.  They were frightened we wouldn’t, we wouldn’t put the effort in.  And they, and, uh, I said alright.  They, but they were giving us shells, and we were giving them shells.  So the Kiwis and the Americans [INAUDIBLE], stopped them from coming because we’re, we were


hill 121. The Marines were next to us on hill 111, and we had a contact bunker six blokes, night fort for three days in that bunker.  And, uh, the Marines blew through, left our  machine gunners, 12 blokes, on top of the hill.  And uh, and they come back and we took the hill, but out blokes stayed there.  And Cooper, this 19 year-old Sergeant, he said to the blokes get down in the trenches.  Stay there.  I’m calling now to [INAUDIBLE].


So he did.  And then blokes in the back of the same, he, uh, Corporal there, he run through the shell fire to the Marine radio shack that the [INAUDIBLE] was going on and, uh, and he came back, he never  got hit.  He was a World War II but never went out [INAUDIBLE].  And, uh, he just marvelous..  But when, when it was, when it was, when it was all over, the killing stopped.


I just got on my knees and I said thank you I suppose.

I:          Hm.

K:        Then the morning  we do, usually we do, just on, just before, fairly early from about five in the morning, and the stench was terrible and, uh, and daybreak, there was, thousands of dead Chinese.  All stages of decomposition to the, these types of death.  And I just


thought there was, a mind boggle.  So we went up there and we saw a couple of Chinese.  They were delousing a mine.  They had a mine under our position on hill 121.  If the War would have waited on there like World War I, they would have just, woop.  That would have been gone.

I:          Um.

K:        I would have turned because they, 121 and hill 111 where that bunker was was right to Seoul.  They could go straight through to Seoul, and they stopped.


I:          So the hill that you, um, mostly were stationing was hill 121.  Any other episode that you remember about the, the last battle of Hook?
K:        No, just the relief to get out, that it was all over, and I survived as a 19 year-old.  I left Korea than 6’ and 11”.  So I grew up when I was there.

I:          Um.

K:        No, not really.


Uh, I think, uh, mostly our dead and wounded were gone cause we kept our place clean.  We never kept it dirty.  And, uh, I, it’s just the utter relief to think that I survived, that we survived

I:          Um hm.

K:        That’s why we call ourselves the Lucky Battalion cause that War would have went on if we would have lost, we would have lost ourselves.  Cause the Duke of Wellington’s got a terrible hiding there.  They were only young kids, British National Service.


One thing about, about the British, when, uh, 1950, when three [INAUDIBLE], the British refused the declaration.

I:          Why?

K:        Because there wasn’t enough men in the field.

I:          Hm.

K:        You gotta.  So anyhow, they brought everybody in they could just to try, and they end up killing them.  But there was no [PRE-SIEGE] one.  [INAUDIBLE] George Cross.  No more military medals.  They wouldn’t decorate us.


So if you did something brave, you got a military medal.  You died, [INAUDIBLE] expect it.  And the British were very bad at this.

I:          Hm.

K:        And they did the same thing in Malia, too.  When we were in Malia.

I:          Um.
K:        That broke us.  We were really.  When Malia finished after two years, we were gone.

I:          Um.
K:        We, we were full of PTSD and anxiety and others.

I:          You have PTSD, too?  What is the symptom?

K:        You, you talk too much.  Uh, you say things you shouldn’t say.


And you do things you shouldn’t do and, and.  But as you get older and, uh, I had a brain tumor removed, change your personality a bit, it, it, it just  changed.  But I had a wonderful wife,

I:          Um.

K:        And that’s the beauty.  She stuck by me yeah, all.  I will never, I don’t know, 52 ½ years before she passed away.

I:          Great.  Oh, passed away?

K:        Passed away, yes.


I:          She passed away?  When?

K:        Uh, January 2011.

I:          Oh, it’s been a while.
K:        Yeah.

I:          Oh.

K:        [INAUDIBLE]

I:          I’m sorry.

K:        We miss them, we  miss them terribly.

I:          Yeah.

K:        You miss them because you’re, they’re, they’re your mate.  She and I had time with me.  She was 80.  War affects you terribly.

I:          Yeah.

K :       It doesn’t matter who you are or what you are.  If, if you’re in an actual infantryside like Matt and I, you’re in it.

I:          Um hm.


Then if you got those blokes, we went out on the trails in, on the Hook with all automatic weapons.  We never took rifles.  Seven guns and, and brain guns.  The Chinese didn’t like us because we too, too vicious.  Cause we took over from the French and the Americans, we had to fight for Canadiens, we had to fight for that [INAUDIBLE] cause they wouldn’t control what we do.  We were very vicious.

I:          Would you shake hands if I arranged a meeting with a Chinese soldier who fought


against you at the time?
K:        Why, certainly.  I’ve got nothing against them.  They did a job.  We did a job.  Nothing against them.

I:          Um hm.

K:        It, it, because I was, uh, examined in The Repat Hospital, and he was a, a, a well anyhow, he’s checking from the [INAUDIBLE], and he was Chinese, elderly Chinese he said in Korea.  Still.  But who you fighting where, the Chinese?


[INAUDIBLE] Who you fighting, Chinese?  And he started to get off his chair a bit.  I said calm down, mate.  It’s all over.  I said you weren’t there.  You’re Australian.  I said he is the one who walked into there and say good day to the  [INAUDIBLE] cause most of them didn’t hear, cause I forget they were all soldiers.  Most of the Chinese with us, they had that big, big push to get

[INAUDIBLE] out of the press.


So that was.  And what you must remember also that a lot of Australians in World War II worked.  But the Americans were all World War II.,  They were Marines at the Chosen Reservoir.  They were all World War II.  There’s a thing on Netflix about the Chosen.

I:          Um hm.

K:        I was very, we were very  lucky that we weren’t in the front line during winter.


We were in a Peace Camp, and to keep ourselves warmer, men could wear a [TROPA] feathered cap was warm where that went up, around your neck in the morning, but you were warm.

I:          What is Korea to you?  You told me you didn’t know anything about Korea.  You fought for, the last battle of the Hook.  You encountered so many wounded


and dead soldiers.  You came back in one piece luckily.  And you’ve been back to Korea, and you saw these changes.  What is Korea to you now personally?

K:        Me, beautiful place.  One of the best places I’ve ever been to.  And, uh, you can’t describe it.  You could treat it as a hero, and this doesn’t lie too good with an Infantry Sergeant.  We’re not heroes.  We’re just doing a job like we were trained to do.


But you people are absolutely marvelous.  To me, I’ll never forget what I told a Korean.  I don’t think I’ll ever go back.  I’d like to, but I’m too old.

I:          And I hope that I can reach out to the history teachers here in Australia so that we can share this interview with them so that they can teach in the classroom about the War that you fought for with a clear outcome.
K:        Yeah, yeah, yeah, because it was all over, you know.  And t hen we went up to the


Kansas line when we, we, we did the Kansas line.  That  was in case the Chinese had another go.

I:          Um hm.

K:        But they were finished, and we were finished.  So but, uh, the sight I saw after the 28th of July sticks in my memory for the rest of my life.  It’s a lot men, a lot of waste of human life.

I:          What would you say to the people who doesn’t know really about this, uh, legacy of the Korean War?  What would you say to them?


K:        Stupid.

I:          Other than that, what would you say to them?

K:        Read a book.  Get a book.  Read it.  Plenty around.  Read about it.    Some books

I:          Just explain it.  What is the legacy you think that they need to know?

K:        Well, they  need to know what we did, not only us but the other nations and what casualties we suffered and what, and else are the food, the climate.  You got a funny climate, you people.


I:          Tell me about it.

K:        It rained.  And when it snowed and we were at the Kansas line, we got, uh, sheets of galvanized tin, turned it up and it could stay on the side of the hill in the snow.  It was a white Christmas for us.  That sort of thing. It’s, it’s Korea would never, Matt talked and talked and talked. I didn’t believe him.


But you gotta go there and experience.  The experience is exhilarating to know

I:          Um hm.

K:        People love you that much for what you’ve done.  And we think nothing of it.  We just went out and did our job.  We were trying to, to do it.  And, and, and I didn’t, uh, I didn’t volunteer to go to Korea.  I was, I was a Regular Army soldier.  And they just put us on a plane and took us there.  That was it, simple as that.


I wanted to be an engineer, drive bulldozers and trucks and that.  But they said no you’re going.

I:          Any episode that you didn’t share with me so far, you haven’t shared?

K:        No, not really, no.  I, I think that was about the lot and, uh, I’ve done a lot of interviews in, in my time.  And, uh, I did [INAUDIBLE] I think you’ve got a bloke here today who’s only got one leg.  Yeah, I think he might  be a gunner from the, uh, from, uh, New Zealand.


He lost his leg in Korea.  [INAUDIBLE]  They carried him out.  He’s very good.  I think he got a Mr. Pooley from one area.  He was with me.  Three of us were with [INAUDIBLE] talking about the Korean War.  He talked about it.  They gave him a walk-about the Korean War.  It’s, it’s for people


to know what we did, not only what, what they did in Viet Nam or Second World War.  The Americans are, um, are a funny mob.  But we can’t understand why they left, [would go on living].  That’s how blokes see it.  [INAUDIBLE] But that’s another bit of [PARCEL].  I think I lost many a hundred dead in my [INAUDIBLE]  But you’ve got to admire the Australian soldier.


He’s a good soldier.  I must say that because I’m one of them.  They are god.  Mateship.  Gotta stick with it.

I:          Yes.
K:        We love you people now more, more and more.  I bring you, [you said once] oh, come on.  Come down, come down to the, to the, uh, Ball’s Club and have lunch with us, you know, always something.  Means a lot to us.  Twenty-seven July.  I’ll go down RSO .  That was our branch in Corinda


to do a cling on the Korean War, and he did a, a tv program on the Korean War.

I:          Um hm.
K:        And he had the, the, uh, photographic plates of the Korean War, the hill and everything else of the Hook.  You knew where you were.  We never knew.  You could see it with your eyes and with your ears.  I’ve, I’ve written there.  I’ve got things here that was written Surviving the Hell on the Hook Brings Pure Joy.


I:          Show that to the camera, up to your chin.

K:        Did I get it?  Don’t tear it.

I:          It’s okay.  Just, just show it like that, yes.   Bring it up to your, yes.  Great.  Yeah.  So what is about it?


Your fingers are covering it up.

K:        Sorry.  I apologize.

I:          What is it?  Surviving Hell on the Hook Brings Relief and Pure Joy.

K:        Yeah.

I:          And that’s you are there?

K:        That’s me.

I:          Standing?

K:        Yeah, that’s me.

I:          Beautiful, handsome, young boy.

K:        Yeah, [INAUDIBLE] Twenty years of age.

I:          Oh.  You were there.

K:        Yeah.


Can you get it all?

I:          Um hm.  I got it.  Thank you.  So let’s wrap this up.  Any other, any other things that you want to show?

K:        Well, I did a, that’s me with my son.
I:          Where?

K:        This was in Kambra for the 60th anniversary of the Korean War.

I:          Yeah.  Show that too.

K:        That’s my son.  You want it that way or the other way?  Which way?



I:          No.  Your son big.

K:        He’s bigger than I am.

I:          And is he, has he been in Korea, to Korea?

K:        Yes, he was with  me.

I:          Ah.

K:        Probably he’s, he’s a psychiatric nurse.  He thoroughly enjoyed it.

I:          Um.

K:        I broke down in Korea, and he, he said that obviously, Dad, you know what you’re here for?  When I was doing this, this here,


a Japanese come up to me and said what money of these medals?  I said they’re not.  I told him.  Yeah, we did a few of these, and these things sort of come, come here.  But that was done when I was into the retirement village.  That’s my life story.


I:          Any other story that you haven’t told me?

K:        Uh, not really.  This is, um, at the Korean Wall.

I:          Um hm.

K:        You thank a survivor do you’re only little boy and very frightened boy at that.  A dad of 55 would [INAUDIBLE] which we, we did, that’s it.  What age [INAUDIBLE]


I:          Right. So Matthew, I mean Kevin, I’m sorry.

K:        You’re right.  You’re right.

I:          I wanna thank you for your fight again for the people in Korea, and we are doing this to preserve your  memory  and honor your service.  But at the same time, we going to use it for the classroom education on the history, the legacy of the Korean War that you witnesses.  Nineteen fifty and now, okay.


You are permanent friend of Korean people.

K:        Oh yeah.

I:          And it’s great honor and, and pleasure to meet you.  Thank you.

K:        And a great honor for you to do this for me.  Thank you very much.

I:          Thank you, sir.

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