Stars and Stripes, 11 Dec. 1966
Pvt. John C. Bogue (right) talks with Lt. Col.
Robert D. Strock, commanding officer of the 304th Sig.
Bn., which in 1958 had "adopted" him as an orphaned 12 year old.
He is now a member of the unit. (USA)
Ex-ROK Orphan 'Back Home' As Member
of 304th Sig. Bn.
By SP5 Russ Havourd
S&S Korea Bureau
SEOUL - Pvt. John C. Bogue left home in the States
several days ago and arrived here at the home he left eight years
ago to go home. Ordinarily, that would be a confusing situation
for anyone, but it's not so in the case of Bogue, who can call two
A native of the Republic of Korea, Bogue (then
named Young Kui Choo) was taken in as a 12 year old orphan by the
304th Sig. Bn. Hq. here in 1958 before being "adopted"
by the unit. Later that year he was notified that PFC of the 304th
had arranged for his parents to adopt him. John left his first
"home," the 304th, to go to the States to his new home
with the Bogue family. Now, eight years later, he has returned
to the unit, as a soldier in the U.S, Army.
"Norris went about the adoption without my knowing
it," John said. "He didn't want me to be disappointed if his parents
were unable to adopt me. Then it came through, I had only a week's
notice . . .they took me by surprise. All I did was take shots
and sign papers, and I was on my way to the States."
Bogue, speaking nearly flawless English, recounted
how startled he was on first sighting San Francisco. "When I left
here all the lights in Seoul were out every night; it was all dark
except for a few main streets. When I saw San Francisco, I couldn't
believe it . . . all the lights were on. I'd never seen anything
like it before."
John went through school in the States and was
in his first year of college when the draft called him at the age
of 20. While at the U.S. Army Signal School at Fort Gordon, Fa.,
he met several NCOs whom he had known back at the 304th
eight years earlier.
"While I was there I had an interview with a
newspaperman and I told them how I'd like to be assigned back to
my old '(. . ?. . ) the 304th Sig. Bn., when I completed
the course. Somehow the aricle got into the Seoul paper and Col.
Robert D. Strock (a battalion commander) wrote me a letter."
"From there it was on a matter of time until
I was back with the 304th," he said. John got a mild
jolt on (. . ?. . ) Seoul and the headquarters compound after his
"When I left I was only (. . ?. . )9-inches tall
and weighed (. . ?. . ) pounds. When I came back. . . days ago,
I pictured building things to be much larger than they were. It
all seems different from the way I remembered, but it really isn't."
For at least a year, John. .