Thank You to the Men and Women who Served in the Korean War
Seen by many as the first fight against communism, 85,314 Iowans served in the Korean War between 1951 and 1953 following North Korea’s invasion of the southern part of the peninsula. On Saturday, 23 Iowa veterans, families, members of the Korean-American community and Lieutenant Governor Adam Gregg gather to commemorate the 66th anniversary of the signing of an armistice to cease hostilities and honor the 508 Iowans killed in battle.
In addition to a few purple hearts and numerous medals of combat, members of the Korean War Veterans Association of Iowa proudly displayed their Ambassador of Peace medal awarded to them by the government of South Korea. Humbly adorned next to their pins, ribbons and medals were white rose boutonnieres provided by the Deb and Jeff Hansen Foundation.
“The flowers made the ceremony just perfect,” remarked Tina Shaw, a member of the Korean-American community who handled many of the arrangements of the day. “As a Korean-American, I cannot begin to thank these men and women who bravely went off to war nearly 70 years ago.”
In addition to the boutonnieres, the Foundation was proud to provide a wreath that was laid at the foot of the memorial before a moment of silence and the playing of Taps. The flowers were provided by Project: Food and Fellowship - a new program of the Deb and Jeff Hansen Foundation that will make military and veteran’s gatherings more memorable for members of the military and their families.
The ceremony was somber and celebratory at the same time. Often called the “forgotten war,” Gov. Kim Reynolds recently signed a proclamation to mark Korean Veterans Day in Iowa; the proclamation was read by Lt. Gov. Adam Gregg as part of the ceremony. In addition to a moving rendition of Amazing Grace, the ceremony included speeches from Jake Chapman, Secretary of the PO2 Taylor Morris Chapter 323 KWVA, Christina Kim from the Korean-American community and Ed Pagliai, President of the KWVA chapter.
We will be sharing more about Project: Food and Fellowship in the coming weeks. In the meantime, please enjoy the photos from Saturday’s ceremony.