Skip to main content

ALERT: KPBS 89.5FM is undergoing scheduled upgrade work which may result in a temporary signal outage. Click here to listen on our radio stream.

LATEST UPDATES: Tracking COVID-19 | Vaccines | Racial Justice

Honoring The Fallen At The USS Midway This Memorial Day

Marine veteran Ruth Osborn holds a 1954 photo of herself and her husband, als...

Photo by Matthew Bowler

Above: Marine veteran Ruth Osborn holds a 1954 photo of herself and her husband, also a Marine, at the USS Midway Museum's Memorial Day service on May 31, 2021

Memorial Day honors those who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country.

On this Memorial Day, the USS Midway Museum paid special tribute to those who served in the Korean War, what is sometimes called America’s "Forgotten War."

Listen to this story by Melissa Mae

USS Midway Museum spokesman David Koontz explained, “It was a conflict in the early 1950s in between World War II and the Vietnam War. But we should always remember those who fought in this war.”

Reported by Melissa Mae , Video by Matthew Bowler

Retired Gunnery Sergeant Joe Kalla is a Korean War veteran.

“I landed at Inchon on September the 15th, Red Beach One. We moved in to take Seoul ten days later. Came back to Inchon, boarded the ship to make the landing at Wonsan and then we moved north,” Kalla said.

During the ceremony, he reflected on returning to Seoul, South Korea 69 years later, as a hero.

“Being a young guy, we knew we were there just to fight a war," Kalla said. “We didn’t really know what we were doing for those people and now they know it and they really appreciate us.”

Kalla spoke of the service people who lost their lives during the Korean War. “I’ll never forget anything about them. I love them a lot. They were good pals.”

Navy veteran Tom Crosby also spoke during the ceremony.

“The reason I joined the Korean War was to thank the United States of America for liberating my family and I after spending three years in a Japanese prison camp in the Philippine Islands in Manila,” Crosby said.

Photo by Matthew Bowler

Navy Veteran Tom Crosby is shown speaking during the USS Midway Museum's Memorial Day service on May 31, 2021.

Crosby and his family were liberated on February 3, 1945 by the First Calvary. He and his brother both joined the Navy.

Marine veteran Ruth Osborn was grateful the USS Midway paid a special tribute to the Korean War Veterans.

“I wanted to come because I love the Korean veterans. I’ve been to Korea. I just love everything about it and I want to be with the veterans that are still here and celebrate with them,” Osborn said.

Osborn said forged her mother’s signature to join the Marines. “I love America. I fought and went in Korea because I was a kid and I had to do something for my country,” she said.

A commemorative wreath-laying ceremony took place to honor all those who lost their lives serving their country.

Photo by Matthew Bowler

Stu Hedley, President of the Pearl Harbor Survivors Association, at the USS Midway Museum's Memorial Day ceremony on May 31, 2021.

FEATURED PODCAST

San Diego News Now podcast branding

San Diego news; when you want it, where you want it. Get local stories on politics, education, health, environment, the border and more. New episodes are ready weekday mornings. Hosted by Anica Colbert and produced by KPBS, San Diego and the Imperial County's NPR and PBS station.

  • Need help keeping up with the news that matters most? Get the day's top news — ranging from local to international — straight to your inbox each weekday morning.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Photo of Melissa Mae

Melissa Mae
Freelance Reporter

opening quote marksclosing quote marksAs a freelance reporter, I cover a wide variety of stories. One day I may cover the current COVID-19 situation and the next day my story may be about a San Diego landmark. With a background in sports broadcasting, any time I get to cover a sports story is an added bonus! I love covering stories about the place I am lucky enough to call home, San Diego.

Want more KPBS news?
Find us on Twitter and Facebook, or sign up for our newsletters.

To view PDF documents, Download Acrobat Reader.