My whirlwind trip is over. I’m back in Seoul.
After traveling nearly 13,000 miles in a 3-day period, it’s good to be home! It’ll take a while for everything to sink in, but for now I’m just trying to recall the moments that made the trip such a memorable experience:
- talking with President Moon in the quiet and intimate setting of Semper Fidelis Memorial Chapel at the US Marine Corps National Museum and having him thank our family for Col. Forney's role in saving his parents’ lives at the Heungnam Evacuation
- seeing the US Marine Color Guard - hard charging, twenty-something-year-old young men - representing 241 years of Marine Corps history
- meeting the US Marine Corps Commandant, General Robert B. Neller
- giving President Moon my US Marine Corps lapel pin and having him thank me, bow graciously, and then put it on his jacket
- sharing time and stories with Chosin veterans Warren Wiedhahn and Stephen Olmstead
- thanking ROK embassy, Blue House, and Ministry of Patriots and Veterans Affairs officials for inviting me to the ceremony as their guest
- and spending time with friends I’ve known for years: Bob and Joan Lunney, Helen and Brian Bowlin, and Tom Fergusson.
As a US Marine veteran and grandson of Colonel Forney, I was proud and honored to represent my family and the US Marine Corps at an event that paid tribute to Chosin Battle veterans and all those who participated in the Heungnam Evacuation.
The event made headlines around the world and reaffirmed the strong Korean-American alliance forged during the dark, cold winter of 1950.