|God Bless Our Troops!
God Bless ASA Veterans!
God Bless America!
|As veterans of the ASA during the Korean War, we
shall always be grateful to Andy Kavalecs and Dalton
Harper, who had the foresight in 1996 to start a
reunion group which has brought hundreds of former
ASA buddies together as ASAKorea.
|A young Preacher walked among
youths who were drinking too much,
therefore he praised the youngsters
who now touched no liquor. (Your
Preacher far left bellowing out a song)
Remember the days of our youth when the poems of
"The Poet of the People", Edgar A. Guest, would appear
in daily newspapers. He is still one of my favorite poets.
Below are portions of his poem, "America", the land he,
like us, loves"....
"God has been good to men. He gave
His Only Son their souls to save,
And then He made a second gift,
Which from their dreary lives should lift
The tyrant's yoke and set them free
From all who'd throttle liberty.
He gave America to men --
Fashioned this land we love, and then
Deep in her forest sowed the seed
Which was to serve man's earthly need....
America! the land we love!
God's second gift from Heaven above,
Builded and fashioned out of truth,
Sinwed by Him with splendid youth
For that great day when shall be furled
All tyrant flags throughout the world.
For this our banner holds the sky:
That liberty shall never die.
For this, America began:
To make a brotherhood of man."
From our Soldier's Prayer Book
"Let music swell the breeze,
And ring from all the trees
Sweet freedom's song;
Let mortal tongues awake,
Let all that breathe psrtake,
Let rocks their silence break,
The sound prolong.
Our fathers' God , to thee,
Author of liberty,
To thee we sing;
Long may our land be bright
With freedom's holy light;
Protect us by thy might,
As we reflect on what took place in Korea, we are reminded of that
inscription found in a military cemetery on Gibraltar:
God and soldier, all men adore,
In times of war, and nevermore.
In time of peace, when all is righted,
God is forgotten, and the soldier slighted.
For many years our battles in Korea were called "the forgotten war."
During the past couple of decades that word 'forgotten' has taken on
less sting, as Korean War Veterans Memorials have sprung up all over
our "land of the free and home of the brave" not only in Washington,
DC, but in states and counties and cities and towns throughout
But, all the memorials in the world will not ease the pain of Gold-Star
Mothers and Wives, or return broken bodies to pre-war condition, nor
relieve the unknown of those MIA.
To paraphrase the Duke of Wellington," If you have but seen one day
of war, you would pray Almighty God never to see any such thing
We are at war again, and we have been involved in several wars since
the "police action" of our youth. Let us pray Almighty God to
intercede in the craziness of those peoples who wish to wage war and
destruction on their neighbors and nations in other parts of their
world. Let us be reminded of the word from the prophet Micah "He
hath showed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord
require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk
humbly with thy God?"
May those thoughts from God's Holy Word abide with us and with all
members of God's Creation, through Christ Our Lord. Amen.
Let us pray for our country, The
United States of America, our
President, those in command and
the allied troops:
Eternal God, our Father, through
whose mighty power our
forefathers built this "land of the
free and home of the brave",
Grant, we beseech Thee, that all
peoples of this land may have
grace to maintain the liberties we
enjoy in righteousness and
peace. We pray, dear Lord of
heaven and earth, that You will
assist and protect all those who
at home or abroad are serving
this nation. Arm them with Thy
defence when they face the
terrible perils of war and
loneliness. Fill them with the
wisdom of Thy mercy and gird
them with the strength of Thy
mighty hand, so they may do
their duty to Thy honor and glory.
Be with the ones who become
wounded in body and soul;
receive into Your eternal
kingdom the souls of the fallen
and comfort their families. In all
we and they do, O God, grant us
Your gift of loyalty to home and
country (our "one nation under
God"), and reverence and
devotion for our Churches and
Synagogues, ......... in everything,
dear Lord, make us true to Thee,
in the name of Jesus
Christ.....Amen and Amen.
"Eternal Father of love and
power, Our brethren shield in
danger's hour; From rock and
tempest, fire and foe, Protect
them where-so-e'er they go, Thus
ever let there rise to Thee Glad
hymns of praise from land and
TO ALL ASA KOREA MEMBERS:
Flag Day revisited and Independence Day, 2014.....
One of my very favorite poets from years gone by was James
J. Metcalfe. He was born in 1906, worked for several years as
an FBI Agent and was in on the killing of gangster, John
Dillinger (1934). He later became a reporter for The Chicago
Sun-Times where he won several national rewards for his
undercover work in exposing German and German-American
Bunds during the 1930's and 40's. He wrote beautiful
'down-to-earth' poetry in a simple style of everyday life events
and things he loved, especially his family, his country and the
Lord of Creation he worshipped.
Here is his poem "God Bless Our Flag" in honor of Flag Day,
repeated in the easy style as he wrote it:
"God bless our flag, the stars and stripes...And see it safely
through...God bless and keep our colors all...The red, the
white, the blue...In every war that we have fought...Our flag
has led the way...On battlefield, among the clouds...Beyond
and in the bay... In all our fights for human rights...Our
banner bright has flown...And we Americans are proud...To
claim it for our own...Its folds are rested on the graves...Of
heroes near and far... A colony in every stripe... A state in
every star ... And now it guides us on our way ... To triumph
great and new ... God bless our flag, the stars and stripes ...
and see it safely through."
And, as we again celebrate another July Fourth Independence
Day, let us never forget as "one nation under God" to offer
with thankful hearts our praise and devotion to the Lord of
heaven and earth.
"O God, who by thy Providence led our forefathers to this land
wherein they found refuge from oppression and freedom to
worship you. We beseech you ever to guide our nation and its
leaders in the way of truth and peace, so that we may never
fail in the blessing which you have promised to those people
whose God is the Lord of Creation and eternal rest, in the
name of Jesus. Amen."
Grant, too, dear Lord, that our children and grandchildren and
all who follow may abide in your peace and live in a land free
of fear and war and anger where love of neighbor and creation
will always be a way of daily life.
God, in your mercy, bless America. Cleanse us from all sin
and lead us into the paths of righteousness and peace. Amen
Rev. Charles "Preacher" Knappenberger,
Chaplain, ASA Korea
JULY 27, 1953...A day for all Korean War Veterans to remember:
Amazing how fast the years go by...it is now sixty-one years since
the Cease Fire was signed to end the shooting war in Korea.
Today, with deep emotion, we recall that day, July 27, 1953. The
cease fire finally took effect at 10:00 p.m. when star shells lit up
the summer sky after 156 weeks of constant battles and
bombings that killed and maimed thousands of humans on both
sides of the 38th parallel, and destroyed much of the Korean
Our Dog Detachment of the 330th CRC had been ordered by
Tenth Corps Hdqts. about two weeks earlier to evacuate our
position along the Sea of Japan in North Korea due to increased
Chinese Communist infiltration. We were given seventy-two
hours to pack up and get out of our position. Additional trucks
were brought in and we "bugged-out" on a more than three day
long journey down the Inje Pass defile to the 326th CRC near
Ui-jongbu in South Korea. We were temporarily housed with the
326th for about four months. Our Detachment sign posted at the
326th now read, The East Coast Homesteaders (relocated).
The War in Korea was now unofficially at an end. Soon POW's on
both sides were exchanged and soldiers were rotated home to
their native lands. But vivid memories remain to this day to
survivors of the war in Korea. As one Marine Colonel on The
History Channel "War in Korea:Fire and Ice" states when the
cease fire on July 27, 1953 at 10:00 p.m. said:
"I looked up the brilliant star-filled sky and thought no one
should die on a night like this."
May God in His loving mercy bless and keep veterans of that
terrible war and may He comfort families who lost loved ones. It
was not a 'Forgotten War' but a 'Forgotten Victory'.
Rev. Charles "Preacher" Knappenberger, Chaplain, ASA Korea
JUNE 25, 1950
From what I read in local papers, I guess the only people who remember
this date in 1950, are those of us who served during those terrible
days, 6/25/50-7/27/53, and there after.
How many of us even knew where Korea was in 1950. It was like in 1941
when Pearl Harbor was bombed, few Americans knew where that place was
in those days. One of my brothers served on LST 853 In the Pacific in
WW2 and was at Iwo Jima and Okinawa. I remember him telling us after
the war, that his ship and many others were donated to South Korea, so
I had a vague idea where Korea was located, never thinking I would be
there one day.
I graduated high school in June, 1950, just a few days before the North
Korea invasion. I was already accepted at Muhlenberg College as a
pre-theological student. As such I had a 4-D draft deferment. But after
three semesters of college but after one of my very closest school
mates was killed in Korea after being wounded and taken prisoner, and
shortly after being executed along with a couple of hundred more
Americans. I enlisted in the Army. Actually I went to join the Air
Force. Thankfully, when the AF recruiter heard I had college, he
advised to join the ASA. I arrived in Korea officially in the early
morning hours of January ONE, 1953, along with Bob Rudolph and a few
other ASA Korea members.
It is our sacred duty, as Korea veterans to keep reminding people about
what happened on June 25, 1950 and the thirty-seven months that
followed when the cease-fire became affective. Korea was not a Police
action as Truman proclaimed. It was a dirty, vicious war where over
54,000 Americans died in battles and other causes, 103,000 GI's were
wounded, and we still have nearly 8,000 MIA's.
Remember your buddies. Pray for them and their families. Pray for your
own people and remember Korea and those brave people in South Korea who
took the brunt of June 25, 1950. We Vets have a lasting legacy of Duty,
Honor, Glory to pass on to our children and grandchildren and every
other person we meet..
The good Lord of heaven and earth bless and keep you all in Jesus, the
Lord's Christ. Amen.
Rev. Charles "Preacher" Knappenberger, Chaplain, ASA Korea