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Demand grows to get Korean War medals into the hands of veterans of the "Forgotten War"

A campaign to put more medals from the government of Korea into the hands of American veterans of that war and their families is seeing a flurry of interest.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — More than fifty families in East Tennessee have applied for and received a medal from the government of South Korea since our first story aired back in early November 2020

“So since your (story), we have had 48 applications from 23 cities and towns from here, East Tennessee,” said Ed Junod who is a veteran of the war in Vietnam helping spread the word here and across the country about the chance for veterans to apply for and receive the symbolic medal.

“He loved this country he was so patriotic. He just loved this country and was proud that he was able to fight for our freedom. This would have meant the world to him to receive that from the Korean government,” said Joyce Engler who lost her military dad six years ago but applied for the medal and received it within less than two weeks.

Credit: Jung Family
Korean War veteran Allen Jung

“He always said that it was the Forgotten War. And just to have them acknowledge him in this way would just be such a blessing. He would have been so proud,” said Ms. Engler.

88 year old Korean War veteran Herman Bruce has his grandson Andrew to thank for helping him apply for the medal.

“I first found out about this, I had heard about it three gentlemen at our church. And it was just, you know, immediately, I thought, I've got to tell my grandpa, we've got to get on this,” recalled Andrew Bruce with his grandfather seated beside him who survived combat in temperatures that dipped lower than 30 below during a war that stretched across three years in the early 1950’s.

Credit: Bruce Family
Korean War veteran Herman Bruce

“After all the years…it tells a whole lot.  And to know that we're recognized now with the sacrifice we paid and suffering that we went through, and I don't regret it. But I'm thankful for this, this gift for this medal,” said Mr. Bruce.

To apply for a medal, click this link: Korean Ambassador for Peace Medal