Battle for the Punchbowl: The U. S. 1st Marine Division 1951 Fall Offensive of the Korean War Page: 81
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not even realize they were there. The defenders were "completely" routed from the hill,
with few friendly losses. The objective was secure at 1430.58
As one fire team of Marines approached an enemy bunker, a Communist hand
thrust forward from the aperture holding a grenade. "Presento," said the NKPA soldier
within. The Marines thought the word meant "present" as in the command "present
arms." One Marine obliged with an armed hand grenade, followed by others from the
rest of the fire team lobbed into the bunker. After the explosion, the Marine muttered,
"presento to you too, bub," and continued with the assault.59
POWs taken reported that seventy soldiers were defending 602 at the time, but
Hill 602 belonged to the U. S. Marines now. That meant that two of the division
objectives were in hand, Objective One and now Objective Two. All that now remained
was Objective Three, Hill 1026.60
In support of 3/7, 3/11 laid down 1,400 rounds of artillery. The 1st Battalion, 11th
Marines similarly fired 1,682 rounds in direct support of the 1st KMC. (The 11th Marine
Regiment, the division's artillery regiment, was also reinforced during this battle by the
780th, 937th, and 196th Field Artillery Battalions of the Army. One battalion of artillery
was usually assigned one regiment of the division to directly support. The total amount
fired for the last twenty-four hours by all these artillery units in total was 8,400 rounds.
That exceeded the "Van Fleet Day of Fire," a prescribed amount of shells to be fired
each day whether targets existed or not, by 40 percent.) It took the repulse of three
58 Ibid., 5.
59 Undated Public Information Document with no Author Named, National Archives.
60 Third Battalion, Seventh Marines, "Historical Diary," September 1951, 5; 1st Mar Div, "Historical Diary,"
September 1951, 6-7.
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Montandon, Joshua W. Battle for the Punchbowl: The U. S. 1st Marine Division 1951 Fall Offensive of the Korean War, thesis, August 2007; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc3938/m1/96/?rotate=270: accessed March 30, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .