Ed Garrick of Port Charlotte graduated from high school in time to got into the last few months of the Korean War. After boot camp he arrived off the coast of Inchon, North Korea and was taken ashore in landing craft in the middle of a snow storm.
It was winter time in 1953 when Dave Evans’ Marine Ranger unit arrived on Pork Chop Hill, just north of the 38th Parallel that would separate North Korea from South Korea. He was an 18-year-old Leatherneck just out of boot camp experiencing his baptism of fire.
Larry Izzo of the Oak Forest subdivision in Englewood, Fla. was a 21-year-old corporal attached to the G-Company, 2nd Battalion, 9th Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division in Korea. He was a BAR (Browning Automatic Rifle) man.
More than 50 years after the rifles fell silent and the cannon fire ceased in the hills north of the 38th Parallel dividing North and South Korea, no one who was there seems to know why both sides put so much stock in controlling Pork Chop Hill during the closing months of the Korean War.
Roger Burton is no war hero. In fact, he missed the whole war. The infantry corporal was a couple of weeks too late for the Battle of Pork Chop Hill, one of the nastiest engagements of the Korean War.
When the Korean War broke out in June 1950 Larry Haynes of North Port, Fla. was a 19-year-old Army corporal serving in H-Company, 17th Infantry Regiment, 7th Infantry Division in Japan.
In Korea Sgt. Tom Miller was a forward artillery observer. It was a risky job because his observation outpost sat on the tallest hill in the area for all the world to see.