I was lucky and had used a little Kentucky windage that is not approved of in the
"This sort of machine gun counter battery fire was costly, burning out three barrels;
however the supporting fires it provided got the bullets into the bunkers where they
counted, and that is what matters." A machine gunner was not expected to last long in
combat: 'Somebody come up with a number about how long you last in combat on any
one of these weapons. You last 14 minutes as a machine gunner. You last 18 minutes
as a mortar man and all this. I don't know where they get these numbers. Somebody out
there with a green eye shade on counting this, you know, theoretical stuff."70
Easy Company's 2nd Platoon advanced up the ridge through intense mortar fire.
Then enemy MGs added to the deluge around the platoon. The Marines of 2nd Platoon
Easy Company then set up their own light MGs and returned the enemy's fire. No
Marines were wounded by the enemy MG fire and only two were WIA by mortar
fragments, a miracle considering the amount of incoming. This platoon maintained its
advance, slowly infiltrating and making maximum use of any cover or concealment
available. Artillery soon neutralized the enemy MG emplacements and these stayed
silent until the platoon neared the crest of the finger ridge. Just then a single burst
wounded all four Marines of the point fire team and hit a radioman as well. Soon mortar
fire added to the confusion and disorganized the platoon.71
Lt Hinson leapt up under the enemy fire and restored order in the platoon. He
then led it in a successful assault. The 2nd Platoon had the greatest distance to cover
and so would be the last on the crest. About this time, Easy Company requested from
69 Oral memoir of Jon Charles Genrich at KoreanWarEducator.org.
70 "Historical Diary," Second Battalion, Fifth Marines, 43; Ralph B. Steele Interview, Library of Congress.
71 "Historical Diary," Second Battalion, Fifth Marines, 43.
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 July 31, 2014.