The Korean War Children’s Memorial Project
is now closing down. The goals have all been met and all that remains
is to pay the bills and dispose of the assets of the organization.
How does one go about closing down a project such
as this? Well, for one thing, we have to make sure that the documents
and photos that have been collected are deposited in many different
archives and libraries so they are not again lost and so they are
kept together to tell the story of the GIs and the Kids in the Korean
War. We will be depositing CDs with a copy of all of the digitized
material gathered in this project with the US National Archives, the
Korean National Archives, the US Korean War National Museum and Library,
the Korean War Museum in Seoul, the Center for the Study of the Korean
War in Kansas, the archives of the City of Gwangju, Korea, and the
archives of the Korean War Orphanage Museum being created by Rev.
Hae Ryang Yoo Kim in Gwangju, Korea.
The original copy of the photo exhibit that was
first shown at the MGM Gand in Las Vegas, Nevada is now in Korea and
has Hangul sub-titles. It is owned by Rev. Hae Ryang Yoo Kim as part
of her museum project. Two other copies are now in the process of
completion and are owned by the US National Korean War Veterans Museum
and Library in Springfield, Illinois and will be made available to
organizations desiring to show them in their community.
The material for printing a second edition of the
booklet “GIs and the Kids – A Love Story” including
the production PDF files will be sent to the Korean War Veterans National
Museum and Library in Springfield, Illinois. They will also be given
the copyright to that document.
All material that originated in Korea (paintings
by the orphans, Christmas cards made by the orphans, correspondence
from orphanage administrators, etc.) will be returned to Korea and
deposited with the Korean War Orphanage Museum in Gwangju. I have
already sent to the US Korean War Veterans National Museum and Library
print copies of most of the photographs that I collected and print
copies of most of the documents. Any duplicate copies will be sent
to the Korean War Orphanage Museum in Gwangju, Korea.
Project correspondence, fiscal records and personal
material shall be boxed and sent to the US Korean War National Museum
and Library for the use of anyone who wants to know more about operation
of this project, the details of how all of the goals were met, where
the money came from and where it went. (Another source of information
in regard to the fiscal aspects of this project will be the Whatcom
Community Foundation in Bellingham, Washington, which served as fiscal
agent for this project. All their data are available for inspection
at any time. As project Coordinator I would submit invoices to the
Whatcom Community Foundation for payment. No donated funds went directly
By 31 December, 2006 the Korean War Children’s
Memorial Project of the City of Bellingham Park and Recreation Department
will have officially closed its doors. Unofficially I shall still
be here, still answering e-mails from Korean War orphans and still
trying to raise money to pay the remaining bills.
I hope all of you readers and users of this web
site have found it of value. It gives me deep pleasure to know how
many lives it has touched.
More time will now be spent at home with my wife
who recently broke her neck in a fall and needs my help in many ways.
I have to spend time getting the house “handicapped friendly”
for us older folk. After all, we are almost 77 years old, time to
slow down a bit, methinks.
My love to you all and my deep and profound thanks
to the many persons who volunteered their time, their energy and their
money to help realize the goals of this project.
George F. Drake
20 September 2006