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Pacific Stars & Stripes, August 17, 1953

Footless Korean Waif Grows Normally Yank-Fostered Orphan Plays Ball at Boys Town

BOYS TOWN, Neb., Aug. 17 (AP)- Remember Son Yong Cho, the orphaned, footless shoeshine boy taken from the streets of Pusan and sent to Father Flanagan's Boys Town by American soldiers?

Today, like thousands of kids all over America, 12-year-old Cho is swimming, playing ball, and having the time of his life at summer camp.

CHO WAS A bashful little guy in a cowboy suit the night of May 25 when he arrived at Boys Town. American servicemen in Korea had made the arrangements and financed the trip.

He's not quite so small now. He has a reputation for his appetite and he's filling out so much he's had to have a new pair of artificial feet.

The young Korean still doesn't have much to say to adults, but his shyness is gone when he's with the other boys. He still loves cowboy shirts and you don't often see him around the green lawns of Boys Town without a pair of toy guns strapped to his waist.

CHO HAS BECOME quite a baseball player and he runs right along with the rest of the kids. He's learned to swim, too.

This summer, John Pak, a young Korean studying for the Catholic priesthood, has been tutoring Cho. In the fall, Cho will attend a special class at Boys Town school.

But within a year, Boys Town officials think, Cho will be ready for classes right along with others of his age.

THAT WILL BE quite an accomplishment for a youngster who never has had any previous formal schooling.

Right now, Cho is at Lake Okoboji in northern Iowa. Groups from Boys Town have been going there this summer for weeklong outings.

It's a long way from the cold, dirty streets of Pusan.



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