“The Hook” Third Wave

Dukes of Wellington Regiment

Dukes of Wellington Regiment

The Hook, near Kaesong, was the site previously mentioned in the post:  https://pacificparatrooper.wordpress.com/2013/12/30/korean-war-34/

battle of Hook map, end of May 1953

battle of Hook map, end of May 1953

This area was a persistent zone of attack waves by the Chinese and the closer the peace talks came to a close, the more the enemy pushed.  During the night of 12-13 May 1953, the Duke of Wellington Regiment relieved the Scottish Black Watch during a lull of combat activity.  The CCF could be heard returning to the area on the night of 17-18 May and after a small skirmish, a POW warned them of another impending wave.  For 2 weeks after their arrival, the Dukes were under constant sniper, mortar and artillery fire.

Black Watch commander, Lt. Col David Rose (right) w/ Gen. Collins at the Hook

Black Watch commander, Lt. Col David Rose (right) w/ Gen. Collins at the Hook

27 May, the CCF started their heavy artillery and mortar fire and the enemy troops attacked in force.  The barrage landed accurate hits on both Green Finger and Warsaw outposts.  On the next day, one of the 2 troops of C Squadron/1st Royal Tanks of Centurions was hit, but they remained in action.  Bunkers began to collapse with men inside and gaps in communication were apparent; wireless communication was maintained with the Americans.

The Chinese began to climb Green Finger and Ronson ridges while the British and Turkish troops returned fire.  When a second attack came up Warsaw, the fighting resulted in fierce hand-to-hand combat.  Another platoon was sent from Hill 121 and those men suffered severe casualties from enemy tank and machine-gun fire.

men of the Dukes

men of the Dukes

The CCF switched their attention to Hill 146 where 2 companies of Kingsmen awaited their arrival.  The Chinese battalion was wiped out as they formed up in front of Pheasant ridge.  Another attack following never stood a chance as they approached Ronson.

In the early morning hours of the 29th, the Chinese attacked once more, but again, they were forced back.  The Dukes secured the Hook at 0330 hours and an operation began to free the men who had been trapped in the tunnels, bunkers and collapsed dugouts.  At noon, the 1st Battalion/Royal Fusiliers began to relieve the Dukes.

men of the Dukes

men of the Dukes

The U.S. Army I Corps Artillery, from a rocket battery, had been firing during these battles in assistance.  The Royal Australian Regiment would see action here in July.

Click on images to enlarge.

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Personal note-

A story from the Daily Mail.co.uk, a first hand piece concerning this  event, will be posted during the intermission time between the Korean War and WWII along with other accounts I missed adding as I collect my notes and research for the early starts to WWII.

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WWII Update – 

A wonderful tribute and Farewell Salute has been posted by fellow blogger, Jacqui Murray concerning Nelson Draper (96).  A Navajo Code Talker from Barstow, CA; USMC in the PTO.

Please read:  http://usnaorbust.wordpress.com/2014/01/29/wednesday-hero-ssgt-darrell-shifty-powers/

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Farewell Salutes – 

UN Service Medal

UN Service Medal

Bill Austin – Midwest City, OK; US Navy, WWII, mine sweeper

Allan Cabot – Springfield, VA; US Navy, Captain (Ret. 30 yrs.), Vietnam

Timothy Canonico – Merrick, NY; US Army, Cavalry Scout

Pearl Dakin (99) – Washington DC; Washington Naval Yard, WWII homefront service, retired

Joseph DePippo – Massapequa, NY; USMC, WWII, Korea, Iraq (2 tours)

Edward “Ted” Edwards – Whangarei, NZ; RNZAF # 412303 & RAF # 59653

Alan T. Proffitt – Wellington, NZ; RNZAF # 43949, WWII

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About GP Cox

Everett Smith served with the Headquarters Company, 187th Regiment, 11th A/B Division during WWII. This site is in tribute to my father, "Smitty." GPCox is a member of the 11th Airborne Association. Member # 4511 and extremely proud of that fact!

Posted on January 30, 2014, in Korean War, WWII and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 27 Comments.

  1. Good post. Too often we forget about the Brits’ and Aussies’ contribution to the war. And the other countries that sent combat troops to Korea: France, Greece, Turkey, Philppines (and one Latin American country, I think, but I’m not sure.)
    I remember traveling with a couple of British correspondents somewhere in Korea one day and at four o clock we had to pull off the road while they brewed and served tea on the hood of their jeep. We were not actually under fire at that moment, but we were very close to the front. Everything else had to wait for “tiffin.”

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  2. World War 2 veterans in New Zealand can apply for a disability war pension( I think that is the name for it) for damage to their health caused by cigarette rations. It is not much but it does recognise the harm caused by the cigarettes. More farewell salutes: Ronald James McDougall Reg.no. 648638, Bombardier, 25 Battery J Force. Passed away January 28, Ashburton, New Zealand. And Warwick Kieran Whelan Reg.no. 441842 RNZAF WWII, passed away January 28, Christchurch, NZ. And David John Smith, 23rd Battalion, WWII, No. 098687, passed away December 27, 2013, Rangiora, NZ.

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    • Thank you for your dedication, not only to this site, but to your veterans. So many obituaries I see around the world barely mention the veteran’s service (too busy getting the relative’s names in the paper instead of the deceased person’s life), in New Zealand, they always mention the service number. Excellent and honorable.

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  3. On many of your good posts, a mention of artillery is made. I always think about being at the receiving end of a barrage. Of course, I have never served so all I can do is listen. A Nisei vet corroborated that the blast wave alone killed many men…and if they survived, suffered brain and hearing damage at the least. The worst and most common result was PTSD and lowered mental capability according to a post-war study. How sad.

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  4. I was struck by the photos too – so many young faces.

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  5. Great photos . What , the Brits didn’t believe in helmets ? Also , their bolt-action weapons seem a little out -of-date .

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    • I’m sure the photos were taken during a lull of action, but their weapons – I know nothing about. Someone with British military expertise is going to have to chime in here on that. I put a call out in the next post if you like? Thanks for noticing, Dan.

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  6. Very fascinating to get details on the Scottish troopers. Most of this is new to me.

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    • If your school was anything like mine, we were never taught very much about this war – period. I know I must have missed a ton of stories, that’s why I’m always asking the readers to add what they know. One piece of data can lead to another, etc. Thanks for reading, Swabby.

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  7. These original images are amazing. I wonder if our soldiers still smoke as much as they used to? My son’s in the Army–Signal Corps–and has never mentioned it.

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    • I doubt that very much. These pictures were taken before the Surgeon General announced how bad they were for you and the government was still helping to keep the soldiers supplied with cigarettes. You can put your mind at ease mom. Thanks for dropping in, Jacqui.

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  8. Awesome blog! Thank you for honoring those who sacrificed so much for our freedom.

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  9. There are some amazing photos here. Are they from your father’s collection?

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