S. Korea to posthumously confer state medal on late U.S. general for post war contributions

SEOUL– South Korea announced a plan Tuesday to confer a posthumous state medal on Richard Whitcomb, a late former U.S. Army general, in recognition of his philanthropic efforts in supporting victims of the 1950-53 Korean War, the veterans affairs ministry said.

The decision to award the Mugunghwa Medal, the highest Order of Civil Merit, to Whitcomb, who served as the commander of the U.S. 2nd Logistics Support Base in Busan for two years starting in 1953, was approved by the Cabinet earlier in the day.

Prime Minister Han Duck-soo plans to present the medal to Whitcomb’s family during a ceremony in Busan on Friday to commemorate the International Memorial Day for U.N. Korean War Veterans, according to the ministry.

It pointed out that Whitcomb is credited with helping Koreans and rebuilding the ravaged country in the aftermath of the war. He is especially noted for providing U.S. military supplies to Koreans affected by a major fire at Busan Station.

The late former general later remained in South Korea after retiring in 1954 and devoted his life to helping war orphans and excavating the remains of U.S. soldiers. He was laid to rest at the U.N. Memorial Cemetery in Busan, having passed away in July 1982.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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