New Salisbury man gets Korean Service Medal
Nearly 47 years after he was discharged from the U.S. Army, Jack Harris added another medal to his collection.
Indiana Ninth District Congressman Baron Hill and Harrison County Veterans Service Officer Marion Wallace presented the New Salisbury man with the Korean Service Medal during a brief ceremony outside the Harrison County Court House.
Harris, 75, had been taken to the courthouse by his son, Troy, under the pretense of needing to sign some paperwork with Wallace. In the meantime, the rest of the veteran’s children ‘ Stanley of Leavenworth, Bob of Depauw, and twins Ronald of New Middletown and Donald of New Salisbury ‘ and their spouses and some of his grandchildren and his brother, Daugh Harris, New Salisbury, gathered on the northwest corner of the courthouse near the war memorial. Harrison County Commissioner James Goldman, who represents the district Harris resides in with son Troy, also was present.
When everything was ready, an unsuspecting Harris was pushed in his wheelchair to join them.
‘On the occasion of the 57th anniversary of the outbreak of the Korean War, I would like to offer you my deepest gratitude for your noble contribution to the efforts to safeguard the Republic of Korea and uphold liberal democracy around the world,’ Wallace said. ‘At the same time, I remember with endless respect and affection those who sacrificed their lives for that cause.’
Harris was inducted into the Army on Aug. 7, 1952, when he was 20. He temporarily left behind his fianc’e, Louetta Golden of Manchester, Ky., whom he later would marry, and reported to duty at Camp Chaffee in Indianapolis. There, he trained as a field communications wireman until December of 1952.
After completing his training, Harris was transferred to South Korea, where he actively engaged in combat operations.
Harris attained the rank of corporal in September 1953 and returned to the United States on May 6, 1954. Four months later, he married Golden. They were married for 47 years before she died. Besides the five sons mentioned above, they had another son, Troy’s twin, who later died.
After being honorably discharged, Harris served in the U.S. Army Reserves and was employed more than 40 years by G.E. at Appliance Park in Louisville.
Harris’s citations include the Combat Infantry Badge, United Nations Service Medal and the National Defense Service Medal.
Wallace said the Korean Service Medal is issued by Korea, not the United States. It is available to any veteran who was assigned, attached or mobilized to units operating in South Korea or Korean waters for at least 30 consecutive or 60 nonconsecutive days.
‘They deserve the same thing’ as Harris, Wallace said.
Wallace said he doesn’t have a list of those veterans, though, and relies on requests to help obtain the medal for them.
Harris is a member of the YMCA of Harrison County in Corydon.