supply to use real ones in a training problem at the time). Three heavy MGs (Machine
Guns) poured fire over the head of the advancing platoon as the attack commenced.12
From defilade, rocketmen (armed with 3.5 inch bazookas) rose and fired into the
opening of a pillbox. Then the Marines charged the position and "mopped up." One
veteran of ten months with the division said to a new private, "Get this, Mac . . . that is
the way we have been doing it. Working together as a team pays off."13
Being in reserve was not all work. In the evenings, movies were shown for the
enjoyment of the troops. In the 1st Marines area, the men gathered in a rice paddy to
see films "projected onto a sheet stretched between two posts." Also, in every regiment
and battalion, there was a heavy emphasis on organized sports for recreation and
physical conditioning such as football, softball, baseball, and boxing. Sometimes
competitions in various sports were held between battalions both for entertainment and
fostering of esprit de corps. Some Marines may have even learned soccer or a "sort of
rugby called 'Ch'u-Ku'" from the Korean laborers.14
The 1st Mar Div's period in reserve also included patrolling and strengthening of
defensive lines. For example, the 7th Marines on 7-8 August had one squad of Baker
Company (1/7) patrolling while Able Company worked on defenses of the Wichita Line.
(The Wichita and Switch Lines were two defensive lines the Marines constructed
defenses on while in reserve. The lines were just north of Inje and south of the Kansas
Line. These were built in case UN forces had to withdraw further south. The withdrawing
12 Public Information Document by Sgt. Gary Cameron, Marine Combat Correspondent, dated 23 August
1951, National Archives: RG 127, Records of the U. S. Marine Corps, "Division of Information, Publicity
Articles Relating to the First Marine Division in Korea, Final Copies, Oct. 1950-Feb. 1952," pages 1-2.
13 Ibid., 3.
14 Oral account of PFC Lyle Conaway, in: Donald Knox, The Korean War: Uncertain Victory: The
Concluding Volume of an Oral History (New York: Harvest/Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1988): 295;
Second Battalion, Fifth Marines, "Historical Diary," 33.
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 March 30, 2015.