Jan. 26, 1951
'Hardbitten' GIs Take In Homeless
By SFC Fred W. Baars
S&S Korea Bureau
WITH 1ST CAV. DIV. IN KOREA-Hardbitten
American soldiers are notorious pushovers where children are concerned
and tales of acts of kindness bestowed upon small fry of many lands
occupied by U.S. troops are legend.
But to the members of the Ambulance Company of
the 1st Cavalry Division, finding a Japanese boy stranded
in Korea, was almost like finding an American kid, and they promptly
took him in care,.
Mitsuo Nakamura, 15, came to Korea with his father
and elder brother five years ago. They prospered until the Communists
struck. Then their business collapsed and the father's health failed.
His present location and condition is unknown. The two brothers found
themselves in desperate straits.
Knowing of the treatment accorded the Japanese
by the Americans occupying Japan, and having heard especially of the
acts of kindness accorded Japanese youngsters by GIs, Harsuo advised
his little brother to try to attach himself to the Americans when
they entered Taegu while he remained to shift for himself. And so
it was that the medics spotted him by the roadside, smiling shyly
and wistfully, as they entered the city on July 7, and quickly snatched
him into an ambulance.
Because of his diminutive size, Mitsuo was nicknamed
"Pee Wee." He has been with the Ambulance Company ever since and
is regarded affectionately by the officers and men.
Discovering that the mother and another brother
are living in Osaka, the men had "Pee Wee" write a letter to his mother
which they entrusted to this S&S correspondent, with the request
that it be forwarded to Japan in an effort to notify her of her husband's
and son' situations. They hope to arrange for the eventual reunion
of the family in Japan.
Mitsuo's Letter To Mother:
Have you been all right. . .
mother? I am very well being with kind (friends), please don't
worry. And I'm going to Japan pretty soon. My picture will be
in the paper in Osaka before I get there, please read it carefully.
And if you read it please look for me immediately.