Best Defense

Thomas E. Ricks' daily take on national security.

Duane St. John remembers Frozen Chosin

Speaking of writing books, a few years ago I was privileged while speaking in Cazenovia, New York, to run into a veteran of the battle of Chosin Reservoir. Indeed, he was part of the relief column led by Lt. Col. Ray Davis that relieved the besieged Fox Company that was holding a key hilltop at ...

Ron Cogswell/Flickr
Ron Cogswell/Flickr
Ron Cogswell/Flickr

Speaking of writing books, a few years ago I was privileged while speaking in Cazenovia, New York, to run into a veteran of the battle of Chosin Reservoir. Indeed, he was part of the relief column led by Lt. Col. Ray Davis that relieved the besieged Fox Company that was holding a key hilltop at a pass that was needed for the Marines to retreat and consolidate. In fact, he was wounded in that overnight march through the howling winter. In a memoir he has written, he recalls finding the Fox survivors, who were still fighting. "We stepped over and around hundreds of Chinese bodies surrounding their position," he writes. He began helping a Navy doctor, who soon was shot in the back and killed instantly. He notes that two members of Fox received Medals of Honor, as did Lt. Col. Davis.

Speaking of writing books, a few years ago I was privileged while speaking in Cazenovia, New York, to run into a veteran of the battle of Chosin Reservoir. Indeed, he was part of the relief column led by Lt. Col. Ray Davis that relieved the besieged Fox Company that was holding a key hilltop at a pass that was needed for the Marines to retreat and consolidate. In fact, he was wounded in that overnight march through the howling winter. In a memoir he has written, he recalls finding the Fox survivors, who were still fighting. “We stepped over and around hundreds of Chinese bodies surrounding their position,” he writes. He began helping a Navy doctor, who soon was shot in the back and killed instantly. He notes that two members of Fox received Medals of Honor, as did Lt. Col. Davis.

Thomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military from 1991 to 2008 for the Wall Street Journal and then the Washington Post. He can be reached at ricksblogcomment@gmail.com. Twitter: @tomricks1

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