Korean War Casualty Information
Flash Flood Near Inje
August 18, 1952

 
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Most recent update to this page: March 31, 2020

 

Introduction

On August 18, 1952, there was a flash flood in the river near Inje.  According to a feature story written by Kelly Sullivan in the Chariho Times (Rhode Island), July 27, 2017, forty-one men from E Company, 279th Infantry, 45th Division, were returning to battalion headquarters from field training exercises.  Earlier that week there had been a typhoon and heavy rains.  The men were crossing a sandbar waist-deep in a river near Inje when a flash flood from a nearby mountain sent a rush of water down the river.  The water level increased to nine feet, and then a nine-foot rush of water crashed over the men in the river.  There were eight men and ammunition in a truck following the men on foot.  That truck overturned and the men were washed downstream.  Stg. Monte Daily of Sargent, Nebraska, shouted to try to warn them, but it was too late.  The water came rushing upon them and 31 men died.  The platoon leader tried to rescue his men, but he also drowned.  The river was later dragged and some, but not all, bodies were recovered.  Those not found were presumed dead in December of 1953.

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Fatalities (31)

  • Becton, Cpl. Arthur Edward - Missouri
  • Beggs. Pvt. Gerald Lester - Missouri
  • Bellavigna, Pvt. Alfred - New York
  • Bolognani, Richard - Vermont
  • Brandt, Cpl. Walter John - Chicago, Illinois
  • Brooks, Cpl. James E. - Cuyahoga, Ohio
  • Cressey, Pvt. Allen Ray - Cuyahoga, Ohi0
  • Fletcher, 2Lt. Clyde - Dickenson County, Virginia
  • Goss, Cpl. Theodore Lawrence - Georgia
  • Graf, Pvt. Alton Elmer - North Dakota - body not recoveed
  • Jansma, Pvt. Henry - New York
  • Kesler, Sgt. Lester Milton - Mississippi
  • Krey, Pvt. Henry - Bronx, New York
  • Litwinowicz, Pfc. Edmund John - Wayne County, Michigan
  • Martin, Pvt. Sylvester - New York
  • Morisako, Pfc. James Mitsuru - Hawaii
  • Parkman, Cpl. Henry Daniel - South Carolina
  • Payne, Cpl. Sterling Jr. - Indiana
  • Pennington, Pvt. Doyle Douglas Jr. - West Virginia
  • Perez, Pvt. Jose Santos - native of Guam
  • Pharr, Pvt. Bobby Jack - Mississippi
  • Pierce, Pvt. Joseph Paul - Kentucky
  • Porter, Pfc. Percy Bernard Jr. - Washington, DC area
  • Shettler, Pvt. Richard Jesse - Pennsylvania - body recovered
  • Smith, Pvt. Henry Ed - Pine Apple, Alabama
  • Souders, Pvt. Gordon Dean - Missouri
  • Spice, Pvt. Paul Floyd - Indiana
  • Stoppiello, Pvt. John - New York
  • Strickland, Pvt. Royce Urah - Alabama
  • Tefft, Pvt. Frederick - Rhode Island
  • Valenzuela, Pvt. Edward Salcido - Arizona

Bios of the Victims

Arthur Edward Becton

Arthur was born January 23, 1930 in Missouri, son of Arthur L. Becton and Minnie Becton.  He is buried in Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery, Lemay, St. Louis County, Missouri.

Gerald Lester Beggs

Gerald was born December 08, 1929 in Missouri, the son of Finus E. Beggs (1910-1996) and Dorothy E. Adkins Beggs (1908-1976).  His siblings were Carol Sue Beggs Sneed and June Ann Beggs Haynes Hart (`926-2013).  Gerald's marker is in New Morley Cemetery, Morley, Scott County, Missouri.

Alfred M. Bellavigna

Alfred was born in New York, a son of Alfredo Bellavigna (died 1951) and Antoinette Bellavigna.  His siblings were Mrs. John Iacona, Mrs. Thomas Esposito, Mrs. John Lenzo, Mrs. John Fortino, Antoinette Bellavigna, Dominick Bellavigna, Joseph Bellavigna, and Edwin Bellavigna.  There is a marker for Alfred in Holy Cross Cemetery, Brooklyn, New York.

Richard L. Bolognani

Born January 29, 1930 in Bennington, Vermont, Richard was a son of Alfonso F. Bolognani (1894-1963) and Carmela E. Cristofolini Bolognani (1903-1976).  His siblings were Mario Alfonso Bolognani (1928-1934) and one other sibling.  There is a marker for Richard in Readsboro Village Cemetery, Readsboro, Vermont.

Walter John Brandt

Walter is buried in Irving Park Cemetery, Chicago, Illinois.

James Edward Brooks

Born September 25, 1928, James was from Cuyahoga County, Ohio.  He was seriously wounded by the enemy in North Korea on June 22, 1952 and returned to duty on June 25, 1952.  There is a memorial to him in Highland Park Cemetery, Highland Hills, Cuyahoga County, Ohio.

Allen Ray Cressey

Allen was born March 17, 1932, a son of James Russell Cressey Sr. (1906-1971) and Olga H. Kelley Cressey (died 2004).  Allen's siblings were Mrs. Daniel (Virginia Carol Cressey) Podolny and James Russell Cressey Jr. (1951-2013).  There is a marker for him in Maple Shade Cemetery, Independence, Cuyahoga County, Ohio.

Clyde W. Fletcher

Clyde was born September 24, 1929.  There is a marker for him in Phipps Memorial Cemetery, Clintwood, Dickenson County, Virginia.

Theodore Lawrence Goss

Theodore was born May 26, 1929, a son of Tate and Serena Goss.  His siblings were Rubye L. Goss, Charles A. Goss, Virginia Goss Hughes, and Katie M. Goss (died 2009).  There is a marker for Theodore in South View Cemetery, Atlanta, Georgia.

Alton Elmer Graf

Alton was born October 12, 1930, in Napoleon, Logan County, North Dakota, a son of Samuel Graf (1900-1975) and Emma Himerich Graff (1900-1975).  His siblings were Gladys Graf Schneider (1927-2019), Violet Graf Henderson, Arthur Grafand Edwin Graf.  There is a marker in his memory in Kintyre Cemetery, Kintyre, North Dakota.

Henry "Hank" Jansma

Hank was born November 28, 1928 in Osceola County, Iowa, a son of Frank Jansma (1892-1965) and Dena Kolkman Jansma (1894-1981).  He was employed in Worthington, Iowa before he was inducted into the Army on February 8.  He had been in Korea only 17 days before he drowned.  His wife was Winifred Feenstra Jansma (1930-2006).  Winifred later married William Smit and she and William had six children.  His siblings were Mrs. Dick (Nellie Jansma) Zylstra (1916-2004), Frederick "Fred" Jansma (1918-2000), Mrs. Arnold (Henrietta Jansma) Bosma (1922-2001), Mrs. Curt (Dorothy Jansma) Meyerhoff, Raymond "Bud" Jansma, Dean Jansma, Mrs. Ed (Gertrude Jansma) Bonnes, Mrs. Clarence (Frances Jansma) Bosma (1925-1999) and an infant brother Donald Jansma.  There is a marker for Hank in Holman Cemetery, Sibley, Osceola County, Iowa.

Lester Milton Kesler

Lester was born May 21, 1929, son of Clarence L. Kesler (1896-1960) and Velma "Mac" Scott Kesler (1905-1986).  There is a marker for Lester in Pratts Cemetery, Baldwyn, Lee County, Mississippi.

Henry Albert Krey

Henry was born December 31, 1928.  His next of kin was Elizabeth Krey of the Bronx.  Korean War casualty records also list Harry Richard Krey, a field wireman with the 23rd  Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division.  Henry died in the flood on August 18, 1952.  Harry died in the Chipyong-ni area on January 29, 1951.  They are both buried in Long Island National Cemetery, East Farmingdale, Suffolk County, New York.

Edmund John Litwinowicz

Edmund was born on April 25, 1930 in Michigan, a son of Sylvester Litwinowicz Sr. (1890-1976) and Helen Litwinowicz (1897-1968).  According to Findagrave, his siblings were Sylvester Litwinowicz Jr., Lusia "Lucy" Litwinowicz, and Raymond Litwinowicz.  There is a marker for Edmund in Mount Olivet Cemetery, Detroit, Wayne County, Michigan.

Sylvester Hayden Martin

Sylvester was born August 11, 1927.  There is a marker for him in Saint Stephens Cemetery, Delisle, Mississippi.

James Mitsuru Morisako

James was born November 09, 1931 and was from Honolulu, Hawaii.  His sibling was Fred Seiji Morisako Sr. (1928-1995).  There is a monument for James in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, Honolulu, Hawaii.

Henry Daniel Parkman

Henry was born April 04, 1928, the son of Edgar Herbert Parkman (1888-1981) and Lula May Ouzts Parkman (1895-1956).  His siblings were Toodie Katherine Parkman Kemp (1923-2019), Mrs. Jack Bernard (Carrie Sue Parkman) Jones (1926-2009), and twin sisters Lula May Parkman (1934-2019) and Fay Parkman.  There is a marker for Henry in the Good Hope Baptist Church Cemetery, Big Creek, Saluda County, South Carolina.

Sterling Payne Jr.

Sterling was born September 03, 1930, son of Sterling Payne Sr. and Virginia Louise Williams Payne (died 1995).  There is a marker for Sterling in Crown Hill National Cemetery, Indianapolis, Indiana.

Doyle Douglas Pennington Jr.

Doyle was born April 18, 1933.  There is a marker for him in Parsons Cemetery, Parsons, West Virginia.

Jose Santos Perez

Jose was born on February 4, 1934 and was from Agana, Guam. Is name is listed on the National Korean War Veterans Memorial, Washington, D.C.

Bobby Jack Pharr

Bobby was born January 03, 1931 in Tishomingo County, Mississippi, a son of Thomas Cleveland Pharr (1888-1965) and Mary E. Sparks Pharr (1895-1983).  His siblings were James Tulon Pharr (1913-1973), Dalton Jack Pharr, Paul T. Pharr, Thomas C. Pharr, Grace Pharr Goodenough, Vivian Melinda Pharr Hacher (1915-2007), Mary Glattee Pharr Silva (1924-1973), Bettie Pharr Yarbrough, Maxine Pharr (1922-1922) and Dexter Paul Pharr (1934-1935).  Bobby Jack was a 1949 graduate of Tech High School in Memphis, Tennessee.  He worked for Blair of Virginia Warehouse and Distributing, a cosmetics firm, and the Hunter Fan and Ventilating Company.  He was inducted into the Army in October 1951.  He went overseas in July 1952.  A member of the Methodist Church, Bobby was married to Etoyle Smith Pharr.  There is a memorial to him in Belmont City Cemetery, Belmont, Mississippi.

Joseph Paul Pierce

Joe was born May 30, 1922, a son of Leo Pierce (1904-1957) and Alma G. Pierce (1912-1990).  His siblings were Walter L. Pierce (1931-2008), who was also a Korean War veteran, Charles and Anthony Pierce, and sisters Wanda Pierce Higdon, Beatrice Pierce Carnes, Rosella Pierce Saltsman, Vinetta Pierce Cantrell, Johanna Pierce Roberts, Lorena Pierce Meredoth, and one other sister.  There is a marker for Joe in Saint Anthony Cemetery, Peonia, Kentucky.

Percy Bernard Porter Jr.

Percy was born on February 26, 1931, son of Percy Bernard Porter Sr.  His sister, Gladys Harris, said that her brother was highly educated and wanted to be a doctor.  There is a marker for him in Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Virginia.

Richard Jesse "Dick" Shettler

Dick was born March 19, 1933, a son of Leo R. Shettler (1910-1980) and Oma A. Jordan Shettler (1915-1994).  He attended Knox (Pennsylvania) High School and then enlisted in the Army on January 18, 1951.  He received basic training at Camp Polk, Louisiana and was sent overseas in June of 1951.  That December he was sent to Korea.  He was in combat for eight months, serving as a squad leader in a 60-millimeter unit.  He was due to rotate home in just one week.  His siblings were Robert (a corporal serving in Germany at the time of Dick's death), James, Joyce, Theodore, Patricia Shettler Organsky, Dorothy, Virginia, and Barbara.  Dick's body was recovered from the river and he was buried in Knox Union Cemetery, Knox.

Henry Ed Smith

Henry was born December 19, 1931, a son of Robert Alexander Smith Jr. (1882-1965) and Clara Louise Melton Smith (1895-1956).  His siblings were Robert A. Smith, Louise Smith Dickson (1922-1998), and Doris Smith.  There is a marker for Henry in Magnolia Cemetery, Greenville, Alabama.

Gordon Dean Souders

Gordon was born November 28, 1930 in Missouri, a son of Henry Jacob Souders (1879-1960) and Edna Vernon Gruner Souders (1889-1982).  His siblings were Herbert Cecil (1910-1961), Floyd M. (1913-2004), Dorothy Catherine Souders Gleize (1918-1994), Maurice Leonard (1919-1985), William Frank (1922-2018), Arlie Opal (1925-1925), Betty Lou Souders Musgrave (1927-2015), and Shirley Souders Christopher.  There is a marker for Gordon in Bloomfield Cemetery, Bloomfield, Stoddard County, Missouri.

Paul Floyd Spice

Paul was born October l;12, 1930, a son of Sidney Spice (1890-1961) and Hester Grace Ulerey Spice (1897-1950).  His siblings were Clyde Garrett "Sid" Spice (1922-2005) and Donnelly "Don" Dean Spice (1925-2018).  Paul is buried in the Akron, Indiana IOOF Cemetery.

John J. Stoppiello

John was born in 1931, a son of Arthur Stoppiello (1897-1973) and Antoinette Stoppiello (1900-1986).  His siblings were Catherine (1926-2005) and Louis J. (1923-1992).  There is a marker for John in Saint John Cemetery, Middle Village, Queens County, New York.

Royce Urah Strickland

Royce was born January 25, 1930, a son of Benjamin Wilson Strickland (1885-1951) and Lula Strong Strickland (1891-1966).  His half siblings were Mrs. Oliver Wendell (Eva Pauline Strickland) Perkins (1914-2007), Mrs. Loyd Markus (Geneva Louiza Strickland) Allen (1916-1984).  His other siblings were: Lois S. Strickland Johnson (1920-2001), Mrs. Herman (Mary Strickland) Leigeber (1921-2002), Bennie Mae Strickland (1923-2004), Mrs. Bernard Joseph (Lavada Strickland) Heslin (1924-1989), Buddy Wilson Strickland, and Norma Strickland Chandler.  There is a monument to Royce in Enon Baptist Church Cemetery, Enon, Alabama.

Frederick Tefft

Frederick was the son of Lester Charles Tefft and Ethel May Lewis Tefft.  He attended Richmond Grammar School, Hope Valley (Rhode Island) Junior High School and Westerly High School.  He was a mechanic at Main's Auto Service in Hope Valley and a member of the Hope Valley Fire Department and the Grange.  He enlisted in the Army on January 19, 1951, completing basic training at Ft. Polk, Louisiana, and combat training in Japan.  In December 1951 he arrived in Korea and spent seven months on the front line.  He was scheduled for rotation home at the time of the drowning.  His body was recovered from the river and he is buried in Pine Grove Cemetery.

Edward Salcido Valenzuela

Edward was born August 14, 1931.  There is a marker for Edward in Evergreen Cemetery, Bisbee, Arizona.

 
 
 

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