ADVANCED HQ, FIFTH AF IN
KOREA- The American servicemen's love for children has become almost
legendary in foreign lands.
From a pat on the head and a stick of chewing
gum to good food, clothes and a warm bed, soldiers and airmen have
always befriended little children.
Here in Korea their work is cut out for them.
Few can remain untouched at the sight of a homeless and hungry orphan.
Countless war orphans in Korea have been "adopted" by the men.
Moved by the sight of dirty and ragged little
boys and girls wandering the streets, men of Fifth Air Force headquarters
took them under their wings. Until such time as a home could be
found for them the children ate in the mess halls and slept in the
barracks or tents.
Now, under the supervision of Lt. Col. Russell
Blaisdell, air chaplain for Fifth Air Force in Korea, orphans in
the care of these airmen are being placed in homes and with families
who will provide for them and educate them.
Recently a group of these children was taken
to the Myung Chin Su Orphans' Home of Seoul and turned over to the
"father" of the orphanage, Hoh Chun Mahn, a graying, elderly Korean
who has devoted his life to social work.
Hoh has his problems, outstanding of which is
the scarcity of food.
"We live from day to day,"
he said, "And each night I pray that there will be food for the
Hoh's prayers were answered when the Fifth Air
Force heard of his plight and began to sponsor the home. Money,
food and clothing were given by officers and airmen in and around
The little waifs how had been "adopted" by airmen
were reluctant to leave their new found friends when taken to the
orphanage and the parting was just a little tearful. But before
the man left, their charges were laughing and playing with other
orphans in the yard. Testimony of the children's love for Hoh Chun
Mahn came when U.S. Marines, advancing through Seoul, brought some
40 orphans to Hoh. The children had joined in Leathernecks in the
streets, asking to be returned to their "home" from which they had
been taken by Communist troops.
Some of Hoh's older charges
have joined the army of the Republic of Korea to fight for their
homeland. Others are working to support the orphanage.