LOS ANGELES, CA – Jan 05, 2016 – The late James Van Fleet (March 19, 1892 – September 23, 1992), who served as a commander of the U.S. 8th Army during the Korean War, was awarded this year’s Paik Sun-yup ROK-US Alliance Award (the Paik Sun-yup award).
Ministry of National Defense (Republic of Korea) held the third Paik Sun-yup Award Ceremony at the Seoul Hyatt Hotel in the evening on November 1st to awarded General Van Fleet and Joseph McChristian Jr., the grandson of Gen. James Van Fleet and the chairman of the Van Fleet Foundation, accepted the Paik Sun-yup Award on his grandfather’s behalf.
Ministry of National Defense (Republic of Korea) has instituted this award in 2013 to illuminate meaning of the ROK-US alliance as well as further development of the alliance and has awarded selected one US personnel annually. The first winner was the late General Walton Walker and the second winner was William Webber, the U.S. Reserve Army Colonel.
Gen. Van Fleet, the veteran who participated in the First and Second World War, came to Korea as a commander of the U.S 8th Army and fought with an enemy when the Korea War broke out. When the staff suggested the General Van with a phrase “a hopeless war” immediately after his arrival in Korea, Gen. Van Fleet dismissed the suggestion with a statement, “I came here to win. If you do not want to be with me, go home right now.”
CPT Jimmy Van Fleet Jr., the son of General James A. Van Fleet, was also volunteered at the Korean War and played an active part as a B-26 bomber pilot. When Gen. Van Fleet heard the news of Jimmy’ disappearance due aircraft gun shot during his air strike mission carried out in North Korea, he concealed his inward agitation. It has been told that Gen. Van Fleet, who stopped the operation Searching Jimmy to prevent power losses from the operation, gazed vacantly at the area of the map where his son went missing.
After the Korea War, Gen. Van Fleet maintained the military academy training system of Korean military and he is known as a “Father of Korea Army” due to his involvement in establishing of the Military Academy. He also supported the economic growth of Korea by visiting South Korea with the U.S. executive groups.
The Korea Society has instituted James A. Van Fleet Award from 1992 for honoring General Van Fleet who served World War II and the Korean War to reward to the person who contributed greatly to the relationship between the U.S. and South Korea.
The winners of the award are Jeong H. Kim (the 11th president of Bell Lab, 1998), Jimmy Carter (former U.S President, 2000), Ban Ki-Moon (8th and current Secretary-General of the UN, 2004), George H.W. Bush (former U.S. President, 2005), Kim Dae-jung (former President of the Republic of Korea), Lee Kun Hee (Chairman of Samsung, 2006).
Distributed by Press Release Jet
Contact Person: Alfonso Sanchez Orozco
Country: United States