Korean War monument memorial service
What: Dedication of monument remembering Hall County’s fallen military during the Korean War, 1950-53
When: 11 a.m. Saturday
Where: Rock Creek Veterans Park, off Northside Drive and Academy Street, Gainesville
Their day has finally arrived.
A group of Hall County Korean War veterans plans to dedicate a long-awaited memorial for fallen military during the “forgotten war” at 11 a.m. Saturday in newly named Rock Creek Veterans Park, off Northside Drive and Academy Street in Gainesville.
“It is a special (event) for us, and I knew a couple of guys on that monument indirectly,” said Paul Scroggs, president of Korean War Veterans of Georgia. “They left here as kids, went 7,400 miles from home to that strange, cold land and gave their life.
“The rest of us got to come home and we want to honor them so that they’ll always be remembered and never forgotten.”
The group had started with a modest goal: Build a small memorial honoring the six Hall men who died in Korea during the 1950-53 war.
That changed over time, particularly as efforts led to the discovery of five additional men from Hall who died or were killed in action, and the project grew, as did the costs.
A quick check by the veterans group with some Korean churches led to Sunny K. Park, founder of the Doraville-based Good Neighbor Foundation. He came to Gainesville and looked over plans for the monument. He also noticed the Vietnam War memorial at Rock Creek, and said he believed the Korean War monument should be the same size.
In a July ceremony, Park presented a $14,500 check from the “Korean-American community in Georgia” to the Korean War Veterans of Georgia toward the memorial.
The rest of the $27,000 project was funded by Hall County donations, including $9,500 from Charlie So, a Boeing retiree who lives in Oakwood.
Childs Monument Works of Elberton helped in the project.
Several Korean War veterans, as well as Park, plan to speak at Saturday’s event.
“We are pleased that each of the young men that died while in Korea and fighting for our country will have at least one family member representing and honoring their memory,” Scroggs said.
Also, the Hope Johns Creek Korean American Youth Orchestra is scheduled to perform.