Posts by Ned Forney

Childhood Dog Tag Hunts

Dog tag of Philip Ackley

Country “A”: “We don’t study that.”  “No, our teachers never talk about it.” “I may have heard about it in a movie but not at school.” Country “B”: “Oh, yes, we learn about it starting in grade school.” “It’s taught as a great victory.” “We study it in detail.” Living in Korea for the past…

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What’s in a Name?

War Memorial of Korea- Gallery of names of UN soldiers

We all have one, and although we have no choice in deciding what it’ll be, it’s permanent, staying with us from cradle to grave. It becomes a defining feature of our human character, and long after we’re gone, a memorial to what we did or didn’t do during our time on earth. Whether it’s chiseled…

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Always Faithful: Three Marines, Two Countries, One Mission

Lt's Finley, Ford, and Chang at Camp Upshur

In early 1956, with Elvis songs flooding the airwaves, “I Love Lucy” beaming into living rooms, and Eisenhower preparing to run for a second term, three young men reported to Quantico, Virginia. They were beginning The Basic School, or TBS, a six-month training program designed to turn newly commissioned 2nd Lieutenants into knowledgeable and confident…

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The Kim Sisters to K-Pop – Korean Music Makes Its Mark

The program from the documentary film "Try to Remember"-Jan. 26, 2017

Koreans love their music. From Pansori, a traditional Korean, operatic-style performance with a singer and drummer, to K-pop, the phenomenon that’s sweeping the world with its all-boy and girl bands, to the ever-popular karaoke, or “noraebang,” establishments where friends, usually after a night of drinking, sing in small rooms equipped with a sound system, video…

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The Marine I Never Knew

Childhood picture of Col. Forney

He’s one of the main reasons I’m in Korea, but he died when I was two, and our family rarely talked about him. He’s always been, in the words of Winston Churchill, “a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.” After spending over three years researching the man who’s made such an impact on…

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Teamwork, Freedom, and Choco Pies

choco pie

Remember the footage a few months ago of a North Korean soldier dashing across the border into South Korea, his fellow countrymen frantically chasing, yelling, and firing their guns at him? The video was seen by millions around the world. In the hours immediately following the dramatic escape, the 24-year-old, riddled with bullets and bleeding…

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Sending Them to Die

Lee Tae-Won protesting at Chinese embassy

At the age of 16, Lee Tae-won, convicted of helping a young woman escape from North Korea and deemed an enemy of the state, was sentenced to five years in a “re-education” camp or gulag. His father, an accomplice to his son’s treasonous behavior, was given the same sentence. As traitors of the Supreme Leader,…

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