We boarded the ships in North Korea at Hungnam. This was in December 1950. The Marines had been extracted from the Chosen Reservoir and the last to load was the 7th Infantry Division. We all of the troops were safely on ship there was quite a fire display on shore while the Navy bombarded the ammunition and other equipment that we did not have time to evacuate.
Many of us had frostbite and were being treated in the ship below deck at bunk side or for the worst cases they had to be admitted to the hospital on board. My blisters were not too bad and I did not want to report to sick bay because I was afraid of being court martialed from not taking my sleeping bag with me when I went up as shot gun to deliver battle plans to the 17th Infantry regiment who were near the Yalu River. I was assured by the driver that we would return by nightfall. What the driver did not know was all the traffic going north was one way and the next day the traffic was coming south. This was the plan because of the small winding roads and total chaos the haram scarum way. I was caught in 35 degrees below zero and the only way I survived was to find a school house where our troops were bedded down. I could hardly get to the stove in the center of the room to keep the coal shoved into the stove. By morning I could not feel my feet.
It took about 2 weeks for the ship to make the trip south to Pusan where we would be off loaded for the battles back north. The Chinese Communist has literally driven us out of North Korea and now a new battle plan was instigated. One bright spot in our stay in Pusan this time is the Bob Hope Show. Bob Hope as most people know entertained troops all over the world during World War II and now in the Korean War. This was a great Christmas Present for the Army, Navy and Marines.
I was able to do my duties with the G-3 section but was not able to march and do parade stuff. I hid out in my little office because the blisters on my feet were still pretty tender. It was some time around mid January 1951 before I got comfortable in my combat boots to do any marching. I really was getting homesick by now. Three years away from home.