South Korea – South Africa

Veteran Stories

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    Memorial Site

    The memorial located in Pyeongtaek, South Korea is dedicated to the 36 fallen and eight missing South African Korean War veterans. The Republic of South Africa participated in the Korean War from August 1950 to January 1954. Prime Minister Eerste Minister van Suid-Afrika sent the South African Air Force (SAAF) squadron to assist the war effort. The squadron was made up of seasoned pilots and technicians with outstanding records from World War II operations.

    During the Korean war, the experienced squadron flew a total of 12,067 attacks, with a majority being dangerous ground missions. 78 of the 116 total aircrafts were lost, and 34 pilots died. The Squadron received many awards for its role in the war, including the United States Presidential Citation, the Korean Presidential Citation, and the USAF Unit Citation.

    In total, 826 South Africans fought in Korea, with 36 casualties and eight returned prisoners of war. The Korean War Monument of the South African Air Force was opened on September 29, 1975 by the Republic of Korea Ministry of Defense in memory of the South African Air Force members. The memorial honors the contributions of South Africa, displaying a plaque etched with the names of the 36 soldiers who gave their lives during the Korean War.