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50 years ago today - 25 Sep 1950
At dawn the Marines resumed their attacks on the remaining hills blocking
their entry into Seoul. Shortly after dawn the Marines were joined by two
tank platoons from the 1st Tank battalion, including a flame throwing
tank. Resistance on Hill 105 was heavy until the flame-tank got close
enough to flame enemy trenches. At this point the enemy broke with over
300 surrendering as the Marines took this position. Hill 88 fell shortly
afterward and the Marines entered the western edge of the city. Marine
casualties were sever while the North Koreans lost over 1750 men killed and
an unknown number more wounded.
Meanwhile, beginning at 6 AM, the 32nd Infantry Regiment, 7th Division,
crossed the Han River three miles southeast of downtown Seoul. The 32nd
was followed across the Han by the ROK 17th Infantry Regiment. During the
day these units took South Mountain, while others took Hill 120. The
units on South Mountain and Hill 120 dug in for the night and awaited the
expected counterattack. To the east, the 17th ROK advanced toward Hills
348 and 292.
Shortly after dusk, two large enemy columns were spotted trying to flee
north. B-29's dropped flares through out the night as Marine night
fighters strafed and bombed the fleeing enemy while artillery pounded them.
In the 25th Division sector the 35th Infantry attacks across the Nam
River, taking Chinju.
In the 2nd Division sector, the 38th Infantry started northwest from
Hyopch'on toward Koch'ang. Their advance was slowed because the road had to
be cleared of abandoned enemy vehicles and equipment. According to
prisoners, the North Korean 2nd Division had abandoned all their vehicles,
heavy weapons and equipment as they scattered into surrounding hills. The
38th Infantry advanced 38 miles during the day, stopping a few miles short
of Koch'ang. Meanwhile the 23rd Infantry fought its way toward Koch'ang on
parallel road to the north of the 38th.
In the 24th Division area, the enemy stubbornly held their positions 3
miles southwest of the town on the main highway so during the early morning
hours the 5th RCT circled south and attacked the city from that
direction. They entered Kumch'on, now reduced to burning rubble, about noon.
By late evening the entire 1st Cavalry Division was concentrated in and
around Sangju. Shortly before midnight, the division command, General Gay,
received permission from I Corps to advance and link up with X Corps units
in the vicinity of Suwon. Meanwhile, the 1st ROK Division had crossed the
Naktong and moved up to the Hamch'ong-Poum area northeast of Sangju, thus
protecting the 1st Cavalry Divisions right flank.
Ed Evanhoe, PO Box 916, Antlers, OK, 74523
Author: DARKMOON: Eighth Army Special Operations in the Korean War
Member: American Society of Journalists and Authors (ASJA)
Life Member: Special Forces & Special Operations Associations
Web site: http://www.korean-war.com