The folks who I mentioned last night in regards to the movie about the Chosin Reservoir sent us some information on LTC Don Carlos Faith Jr., Medal of Honor recipient and hero of the Chosin battle whose body was just identified and recovered this last October from the battlefield by the Joint Prisoners of War, Missing in Action Accounting Command (JPAC) field recovery team. Wiki says;
During a desperate drive south by convoy along the only road on December 1st, the 31st Regimental Commander, Colonel Allan D. MacLean was killed so the command of the entire regiment went to Faith. Later the same day, Faith led an attack again a CCF roadblock when he was wounded by a fragment grenade. Faith was loaded into the cab of a 2 1/2 Ton Truck and with Pfc. Russell L. Barney driving it was the only truck to get through the last roadblock. As Barney was driving they were struck by small arms fire by the CCF at which time Faith was hit again and died. At some point Barney had to abandon the truck leaving Faith’s body in the truck. Barney made it back to the safety of United Nations lines where he later reported his account. Like all the dead and wounded who were killed by the CCF and left with all the abandoned convoy vehicles, as none of the convoy vehicles made it to safety, Faith was listed as Missing in Action.
Later Faith’s classification was changed to Killed in Action Body not Recovered. After 62 years in this classification, Faith’s remains were recovered near the Chosin Reservoir by a Joint Prisoners of War, Missing in Action Accounting Command (JPAC) field recovery team. His remains were identified through DNA and reported to the public by Defense Prisoner Of War – Missing Personnel Office (DPMO) on October 11, 2012.
From his Medal of Honor citation;
Lt. Col. Faith, commanding 1st Battalion, distinguished himself conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity in action above and beyond the call of duty in the area of the Chosin Reservoir. When the enemy launched a fanatical attack against his battalion, Lt. Col. Faith unhesitatingly exposed himself to heavy enemy fire as he moved about directing the action. When the enemy penetrated the positions, Lt. Col. Faith personally led counterattacks to restore the position. During an attack by his battalion to effect a junction with another U.S. unit, Lt. Col. Faith reconnoitered the route for, and personally directed, the first elements of his command across the ice-covered reservoir and then directed the movement of his vehicles which were loaded with wounded until all of his command had passed through the enemy fire. Having completed this he crossed the reservoir himself. Assuming command of the force his unit had joined he was given the mission of attacking to join friendly elements to the south. Lt. Col. Faith, although physically exhausted in the bitter cold, organized and launched an attack which was soon stopped by enemy fire. He ran forward under enemy small-arms and automatic weapons fire, got his men on their feet and personally led the fire attack as it blasted its way through the enemy ring. As they came to a hairpin curve, enemy fire from a roadblock again pinned the column down. Lt. Col. Faith organized a group of men and directed their attack on the enemy positions on the right flank. He then placed himself at the head of another group of men and in the face of direct enemy fire led an attack on the enemy roadblock, firing his pistol and throwing grenades. When he had reached a position approximately 30 yards from the roadblock he was mortally wounded, but continued to direct the attack until the roadblock was overrun. Throughout the 5 days of action Lt. Col. Faith gave no thought to his safety and did not spare himself. His presence each time in the position of greatest danger was an inspiration to his men. Also, the damage he personally inflicted firing from his position at the head of his men was of material assistance on several occasions.
And now he’s at Arlington.