John Murphy - Devastated country and refugees

Running time
1 min 42 sec
Department of Veterans' Affairs


Let me tell you we didn't really have that much chance of kind have anything to do with the Korean people. It was a devastated country then, the war was raging and the first we noticed on the way up to the front was burnt out towns and villages. The people were just moving around. It was like they were trying to find some place where they could start to make their lives again, carrying their belongings with them. It was horrible, you know, to see that happening but we didn't really get that much chance to have any interaction with the Korean people but one thing I found out about the Korean people was that during the war years, especially up in the hills, when the Australians were finding it hard to get supplies up there, there was no way in the world you could get any trucks, jeeps or anything, everything had to be carried up by hand.

There was hundreds of metres up in these mountains and the, they got these Korean porters, they were volunteers, guys who were maybe too old to serve in the Korean army or maybe had some sort of a, something wrong with them physically and they were in, what they called, made them into squads of Korean porters and they'd carry these ammunition, food, right up into these mountains supplying us. They weren't armed and they were often under fire so you had to take your hat off to them, you know, so that was really the most I had to do with, as far as Korean people go.

Was this page helpful?
We can't respond to comments or queries via this form. Please contact us with your query instead.