Thursday, January 3, 2019

A Time to Heal

Photo by William Straeter (AP)
July 4, 1951. Korea. In lieu of a Fourth of July Parade back home in Cleveland, Ohio, Sgt. Harry Hildreth is content to sunbathe on the banks of the Imjin River. Soldiers in Korea had periodic access to their regimental service company's modular shower facilities, trucked into place as conditions permitted.  When those facilities were not available, skinny-dipping was the alternative. While Hildreth, a 28-year-old veteran of World War II, was somewhat removed from the front lines, he nevertheless is prepared for potential hostilities. Next to him are his helmet, boots, a musette bag, and carbine with an expanded-capacity magazine. Sgt. Hildreth's uniform is nowhere in sight. It may be that his service company was providing laundry service at the time. Harry Hildreth survived the Korean War, but passed away in 1984 at the age of 62.

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