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Jack Newman


Joel Newman, the son of Jack H. Newman, recently contacted Martin Markley through a posting Martin had placed on the Internet. Joel identified his father as having been an FO with the 39th FA and having been wounded on OP Harry, probably June 11, 1953.

Martin sent him Sam Buck's written account of his time on OP Harry. (Click here to go to Sam's story) From Sam's account Joel believes that his father, after Sam's wounding, could have been Sam's replacement. Here is an excerpt from Joel's e-mail to Martin.

The long journey down from OP Harry 
(photo by J. Jarboe)

"I just read Sam Buck's story and it made me shiver. Part of what I didn't tell you jives with more of my father's story.  It could well be that he was Sam's replacement.

I remember my father telling me about someone who had been wounded and had to play dead  I had always assumed this was an infantryman from the trenches, not necessarily another FO  (Sam's) detail about the replacement being wounded in "both feet" also sounds like my father. He actually got a shrapnel wound in one ankle. However, the blast blew gravel into the sole of his other boot, and he said that hurt worse than the shrapnel wound -- thought he'd lost some toes until they got his boot off later and found only scrapes.

I recall he said they walked a quarter mile or so until an armored personnel carrier picked them up and took them to an aid station. My dad walked until then, but couldn't once he sat down. Eventually he got airlifted out with other wounded.

I can't be sure we're describing the same events, but it sounds so familiar it's scary. I'd be happy to correspond. And my dad, though he's not able to talk much anymore, (due to a recent stroke) would be very moved if he is held in such high regard by a fellow soldier."

SAM BUCK FINDS THE ANSWER TO A 49 YEAR OLD QUESTION - This Is Sam Buck's e-mail to Joel Newman. (Ed.)

"Joel, I am so happy to receive a copy of your letter to Captain Markley. Your dad must be the one who got me off that hill. We were separated at the Regimental Aid Station and I never saw or heard from him again.

I would never have made it had it not been for him, as I kept wanting to quit and telling him to go on as he had a better chance to get out than I did, but he kept telling me that we were going out together…

 I would like very much like to see your dad…  to tell him how much I appreciated his help and encouragement to get off that hill and back to friendly forces…  Your dad has to be the one.

We Held, Sam Buck"

After he arrived at a hospital in Seoul, Jack Newman was quick to write to his mother. The letter was written on American Red Cross stationery and dated "Thursday Morn. June 12,1953."

Here is a transcription of the letter: 

"Dear Mom,

I guess by now you wonder what happened to me if the War Department sent you a telegram. I am in a hospital in Seoul, Was flown here last night (rather yesterday morn.)

All I can say is I was really lucky. My radioman got it for good. He was lying next to me. The officer on the other side of him got it and my Sgt. on still the other side had shrapnel cut his steel helmet and cut his head.

I caught it in my foot. I thought they were going to cut it off but I see it is still there and hurting like the devil. The "Chinks" artillery hit us. I didn't get on the hill till around 5:30 AM and guess I was hit about 7:00 AM.

It was awful. The Chinks had gotten to the trenches during the night. Their bodies plus our own were in the trenches. We had to step on them to get to the top of the hill.

I found the forward observer that was there that night they attacked. He had to play dead. Said the Chinks sat on him. He was shot up so I practically carried him down the hill with my bum foot.

I hope I never again see that sight or that hill. I don't know if they will put me back up or not. In fact I don't know exactly what they did in the foot. It is my right foot. Cut the boot I had on up.

Well let me write about more pleasant things. The chow is good but I couldn't eat this morning. I haven't had anything to eat since supper the 10th till breakfast this morning. I guess my appetite has gone since I'm not moving around…

If this letter don't make sense it is because I am a little doped for pain. Don't worry cause I am fine and will probably only have a scar. Will write later. Jack."  

Click here to go to Sam Buck's web page for his part of this story.


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©Copyright 2002, Jack Newman, Joel Newman, Sam Buck, James Jarboe.  All rights reserved