Battle for the Punchbowl: The U. S. 1st Marine Division 1951 Fall Offensive of the Korean War

680 (which some of the men of How Company would call "Sanguine Hill") from the
southeast approach.35
We fanned out to move up fingers of this mountain of 30 to 35 degrees.
We moved carefully. When we were about halfway up, the shit hit the fan. James
Dettmen and I were together. We took everything, 81[2]mm mortars, burp guns,
.50-caliber machine guns-every bit of it. Small arms, you name it! When
someone tells me what hell's like, I've been there. Sheets of dirt, rock, and tree
fragments rained upon us. We had gooks all around. There was only one thing to
do-fight forward or fight backward.
Dettman and I hit this depression together. I look out, right into the mouth
of this machine gun. The gunner is trying to take me out. James and I pooled our
resources and put ourselves back to back. We were in a crossfire. Anyway you
moved they were going to get you. The water jacket on the .50-caliber trying to
get me looked big as a saucer. If I could hit that thing, the barrel's heat would
make it sway out of commission in no time. For the moment the depression is
shielding us. The .50-caliber's fire is bouncing off and over us by inches ...
While I take out this machine gun, Dettman keeps 'em off our ass and talks to F-
80 Saber jet pilots providing air support....
I'm getting hotter then something hits me. "Oh my God! I'm hit!"
James looks at me. "You're hit bad."
I feel the depression in my head where my eye used to be. I could see
nothing. My nose was gone. I can't see!
. I didn't lose consciousness and wasn't scared. I prayed....
[Soon, Moore made it to a corpsman.] It was Doc Willie Stewart, navy
corpsman, and he packed the cavity in my cranium and gave me a vial of
morphine.36
Broken down by companies, 3/7's assault that day proceeded as follows: How
Company stepped out at 0230 to take Checkpoint 1. The night was dark and rainy,
making for much mud and slow going. How stepped into a hornet's nest of death and
fire by 0738 at the southern tip of 680. At 0830, How began to take heavy mortar fire.
35 Seventh Marine Regiment, "Historical Diary," September 1951, Operation Order 14-51; Lynn Montross,
et al., The East-Central Front, 183; 1st Mar Div, "Historical Diary," September 1951, 14; Charles Hughes,
Accordion War, 288. "We had finally taken what we referred to as bloody ridge. The Marine historians
called it something else and I later heard that army troops were on a different ridge that they called
Bloody Ridge. Hell, we didn't have much respect for either of them anyway so I figured we could call it
what we wanted. The history of combat in Korea is almost non-existent or is lacking in accuracy. I heard
one historian who questioned two or three men about what happened after a battle. He said their
comments could be anything depending on where they were located and what they saw." -- Oral memoir
of Jon Charles Genrich.
36 Oral account of Wadie Moore in Mackey Murdock, The Forgotten War: Texas Veterans Remember
Korea (Piano, TX: Republic of Texas Press, 2002): 105.

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Montandon, Joshua W. Battle for the Punchbowl: The U. S. 1st Marine Division 1951 Fall Offensive of the Korean War. Denton, Texas. UNT Digital Library. http://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc3938/. Accessed December 25, 2014.