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The Lake News Online
  • Veteran voices: Purple Heart veteran recalls Korean service

  • Part of Lake Sun's tribute to Veterans Day published Nov. 6.
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    • More on Lester
      Age 82
      Branch of Service Army
      Years Served 1951-1953
      Commendations Purple Heart
      Residence Laurie
      Hometown Lamonte, Mo....
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      More on Lester
      Age 82

      Branch of Service Army

      Years Served 1951-1953

      Commendations Purple Heart

      Residence Laurie

      Hometown Lamonte, Mo.

      Family Wife Shirley
  • What did you do in the service?
    I was drafted into the Army in 1951. I was in the infantry and served in Korea until I was wounded. They wouldn't let me go back into active service, so the rest of my time in the Army was in the postal service.
    Describe a memorable time from service:
    I was just off the farm a few months before I was sent to Korea. It was very different, but I just took it day by day. In Korea, it was cold, cold, cold. We were in foxholes. It was the only way to keep warm. I had been there on the front lines for three to four months when I got hit on my arm by a 30 caliber from a sniper. [According to service records, the incident occurred on Jan. 27, 1952 near Sunjon, North Korea.] They put me in a hospital in Japan and a month or so later I was shipped back to the U.S. The bullet went through my forearm and took the bone out. They put a rod up the center of my arm and grafted around it. So I can only bend it so far out and so far in.
    What did you do after you got out?
    Before I was drafted I had a job with Consolidated Freightways of Kansas City. When I was discharged, I came home and went back to work for them. I met Shirley in 1953. We got married in 1960. I worked at Consolidated for 40 years and retired June 1, 1989. We moved to the lake then.
    How would you sum up your service?
    I was glad to serve my country. I would do it again. Overall, the Army was pretty good to me.

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