View Full Version : November 28,1950

09-20-02, 12:17 PM
Stephen G. Olmstead,Lieutenent General,United States Marine Corps, Who served as a young PFC during the Korean War states.

November 28,1950 was a numbing cold and snowy day on the highest plateau of the Chosin Reservoir. It was on this day,at the beleaguered village of Koti-ri, that I encountered future lifetime friends and staunch comrades in arms 41 Independent Commando Royal Marines. During the evening hours, along with other junior enlisted Marines of George Company, third Battalion first Marines (G-3-1).while trying to keep warm we chatted and shared hot drinks with these proud men wearing green berets. Little did we know that the next morning we would jump off in the attack together in Task Force Drysdale. the next thirty six hours of fierce combat in abysmal weather and against a numerically superior and well armed enemy proved that hell was an eleven mile road from Koto-ri to Hagaru-ri.
Dozens of road blocks covered by machine guns,mortars and small arms fire were pinning us down and had to be overcome. The hills flanking the road were alive with Chinese,who as darkness fell became emboldened to move closer to the road to fire point blank at the troops of Task Force Drysdale in an attempt to cut the columms and annihilate the force. Within the task force, acts of uncommon bravery by Marines of 41 Commando and G-3-1 were uninversal. Each road block was assaulted and overcome by the time tested principal of aggressive combat inculcated in the Marines of both Corps.we suffered severe casualties a third of the Task force was killed or wounded in Hell Fire Valley. The Chinese were tough,veteran fighters the Marines were tougher!.
As a young PFC it was the leadership demonstrated in this crucible of combat that inspired me for over forty years of service in the US Marine Corps and instilled my undying admiration for the professional appreciation of 41 Independent Commando Royal Marines. I tip my helmet to the men who wore the green beret in Korea.