Philippines Manila (3)

>> Hey, everybody. I am now inside the museum hall of Veterans' Association, and I wanted to share some stories of the veterans in their own words. So with me here today, I have four Korean War veterans. There are only 500 remaining in the entire country. Seventy-five hundred went, but here they are. Now first time before I start. How old do you think my grandpa here, Max, how old do you think he is? Okay? If you guessed 86, not even close. Grandpa, how old are you? How young are you? >> Ninety-six years young. >> Ninety-six years young. I think he's living up to his name because his name is Maximus Young, so we will start with him because he is the youngest. Okay. So I'm going to start here, Grandpa. Do you want to face this way? >> No, it's okay. >> Okay. So please tell us your name, your ... Oh, he also served in World War II, Korea and Vietnam. Yes, but right now, could you show us ... tell some of your experiences in the Korean War? >> The Korean War? >> Yes. >> Well, I'll first explain that we had ... We arrived there, and the first night, we were in a boat of [INAUDIBLE]. Now we were issued sleeping bags. The following morning, it was a surprise. Instead of my soldiers waking up at 5 or 6, at the earliest crack, we were screaming. It was, some of their bunkers ... some of their sleeping bags were with snakes, so we were sleeping in a rice field with a ring of snakes. [INAUDIBLE] and from there on, we walked and started on, and from there, we would stand up [INAUDIBLE] and our supply line, we went by the third army among them. [INAUDIBLE]. My son, Julian Sanchez, not in that unit, and they were disturbing our supply line. Some of our crops were destroyed. Some of our crops were broken outside, so what the country did was for us to [INAUDIBLE], was changing because the place where most of the North Koreans were. It was in November, in mid-November of 1951 in November, [INAUDIBLE]. Now as we were going north, [INAUDIBLE] our craft hit land mine. Land mine more less throw our craft about 5 to 10 meters high and hit some people that were in a car, but they were thrown up. Now that was a signal then that we were [INAUDIBLE] because in military operations, usually [INAUDIBLE] before there is a [INAUDIBLE]. So [INAUDIBLE] that the land mine was an initial warning to the troops that an enemy is coming. As we passed [FOREIGN LANGUAGE], many people went straight, and then in a certain area, it was about 800 yards. We saw later on, [INAUDIBLE] pass the bank, that's where we start finding the guys. It was 10 o'clock in the morning. >> I just want to stop here because isn't his memory impeccable? How do you remember all the details, what time it was? Oh, my goodness. Wow! I barely remember what time it is right now. >> Literally, when you visited me, you were ... >> Aw. >> Aw. [ Chatter ] >> Aw. >> Seeing you bring this feeling back. >> Aw. [ Chatter ] >> And when he was farming last year, I visited him in Manila. He was at the hospital, so I visited him in the hospital wearing a mask. >> Oh, yeah, wearing a mask. [INAUDIBLE] if this is the end, there were about 10 bunks. All of those bunks was [INAUDIBLE] in the area. So [INAUDIBLE]. All of the [INAUDIBLE]. Now our plan [INAUDIBLE] the first job is follow by the soldiers, so on and so forth. [INAUDIBLE]. Now when they find us suddenly, we were all paralyzed. Even the soldiers had to float [INAUDIBLE]. So what I did, what we did was [INAUDIBLE] and found out that the soldiers there were dropping, literally dropping, and certain [INAUDIBLE] certain area. [INAUDIBLE] ready for an attack. So it was terrible. [INAUDIBLE] what I did, I picked it back up and then turn right to the hills, but it so happened that [INAUDIBLE] the right side wasn't prepared, so we wake up with [INAUDIBLE]. So what I did is, I told my brother to lift up, but [INAUDIBLE] and this was hit. So what I did, I opened the compartment [INAUDIBLE]. You can see the whole area [INAUDIBLE], and so the soldiers [INAUDIBLE] in different sections. So I opened my [INAUDIBLE]. There was no protection. I suddenly walked and more or less ducked and found five boxes of [INAUDIBLE] and started firing at the roof where they were assembled. As I started fighting, [INAUDIBLE] all of them jumping. No, no, [INAUDIBLE], for every five bullets, there's one tracer to find out where the direction of your firing. [ Chatter ] >> I could take the firing ... tracer bullets. [INAUDIBLE] a tracer, which will find out where you bullets went through. So I started fighting out on the trenches. I also fought. There were soldiers. There were soldiers. I continued fighting for almost 10 minutes, so when I started fighting, the soldiers sat up and started fighting, and all of a sudden [INAUDIBLE] supported ... >> Yeah. >> ... supported the fighters. >> So we just finished watching this ... >> After 45 minutes ... >> Yes, and he was a hero. >> Wow. >> Well ... >> And he's not saying it. >> That's just ... >> And he's not saying it, but he's a hero. You know what I'm going to do? I'm going to show ... >> Okay. >> Look at him, his medals. Right? And he received recently last, 2 years ago, the Order of Military Merit which is, I think, the highest honor from Korea from the president, so look at the medals. So this was donated to the museum, and now it's displayed here. That is Grandpa Maximus Young, and I know, since I remember from last year, his secret to staying young is, he's active. He plays a lot of badminton, and he's very, very optimistic, and he has a beautiful wife, so that's the secret. Okay? >> And in for mean time, stop calling me Grandpa. I'm just as spirited and handsome as you are. >> Yes. Well, I am also going to ask ... [ Chatter ] >> General. So he retired as a brigadier general, right? >> Yes. I am a retired general. >> Yes. >> And [INAUDIBLE]. >> Yes. >> But I was only second lieutenant at the time I went to Korea in the 2nd Battalion, Number Two, and [INAUDIBLE]. After they said, "Hey, you, check on the city," [INAUDIBLE] there was already a cease-fire, and the United Nations officers were already at the demilitarized zone, but then upon arrival in [FOREIGN LANGUAGE] or that portion of the demilitarized zone where in the United Nations forces were laid out, we were assigned a division reserve of 24th US Division, the 2nd Battalion Combat Team. So actually by the time we got there to Korea, [INAUDIBLE] there was no more fighting, but then there was a cease-fire but no peace, and I [INAUDIBLE] that there were possibility that the Communist Chinese would resume their infiltration through the demilitarized zone. >> You're absolutely right. So even after the cease-fire was signed, there were many skirmishes. >> That's true. >> They were still fighting, and people even died ... >> Yeah. >> ... on both sides. >> In fact, several of my men, about eight men, when we were at patrol, the area in [INAUDIBLE], from the other side blew up the last night, and it holds, what, of eight men, of my men, in 2nd Battalion [INAUDIBLE]. >> And he retired as a brigadier general for how many years? >> I've been a brigadier general since 1970. >> And he's only 86 years old. >> Ninety-two. >> Ooh, just kidding. Ninety-two. Oh, man. I think I need to move to the Philippines because something you're drinking there, you seem very young. Okay. This is now the president of pep talk. Now he's 90, 91 years old. >> Yes, 91 years old. >> Young, yes, what was ... >> I went to Korea. I was 25 years old. >> Yes. >> Second lieutenant, [INAUDIBLE]. Our location deployment was [FOREIGN LANGUAGE], Bali, [INAUDIBLE], so [FOREIGN LANGUAGE], Bali, [INAUDIBLE], a few weeks there, but up there about, I think, 14 months. There was [INAUDIBLE] brigade, [INAUDIBLE]. >> Yeah. >> [INAUDIBLE] more than one company. So we were made to ... >> Replace them. >> ... to replace them and climb up the hill. >> Yes. I saw the movie, in the film. >> Yeah. And as we go up passing by the tree where [INAUDIBLE] this pile-up, [INAUDIBLE] such and such there, dead people, so sometimes, you have to think about it. [ Chatter ] >> The smell of the dead and the injured. I know. You still remember that, huh? >> Oh, yeah. >> Yeah. We get to remember. >> Well, I hope that now you reflected, and it's not traumatic for you anymore. I hope that, okay, that you don't get nightmares. >> Very good. [ Chatter ] >> [INAUDIBLE]. We trained. [ Chatter ] >> Yeah. We trained. [ Chatter ] >> So it [INAUDIBLE], we will never die. >> Well, I hope you will live forever. Okay. Last but not least, the youngest of the bunch. You're the youngest, right? >> Yep. >> Yes? Okay. Now tell us your story. >> Oh, very simple one. You might be interested to know why I went to Korea. >> Okay. I am interested. >> I was 18 years old, newly graduated from high school when someone [INAUDIBLE] ... >> Uh-oh. >> ... and me, and because of my desperation, I thought, I'll voluntary [INAUDIBLE]. >> Oh! >> So what I did was got myself listed as a private in April of 1952, and on March of the following year, I was already going. >> Mm-hmm. >> I was barely 21 when I was in Korea, and how the Koreans do it, [INAUDIBLE] pretty girls, very amusing. >> Amusing? Oh, amusing. >> And actually 3 months after we were to Korean front lines, I enjoyed my first taste of R & R, meaning rest and recuperation where I met beautiful women. I tell you, they were very accommodating. In fact, The second time I met her, after 1 month, she was already my girlfriend. >> Oh! >> So fancy that. >> Yeah, so ... >> No. I feel very lucky in Korea, but I arrived in Korea in March of 1953. I was promoted to [FOREIGN LANGUAGE], one stripe, one round, I get.. After 2 months, corporate. After 5 months, sergeant. >> Wow. >> In a period of 5 months, I got three stripes. >> Wow! >> The third was the target. In September of the same year, in September of 1953, I was sent to Tokyo, Japan, to be the rising sergeant of [INAUDIBLE] to the United Nations Command in [INAUDIBLE]. >> Wow. >> Yeah. That was a bold moment. >> Yeah. >> ... for my country and heroism in action, not in the front lines but in the country because I belonged to the girl concerned with [INAUDIBLE]. I never should have brought that. I was [INAUDIBLE], and so after that, I was still in Japan in the union, the Wartime Division. By the way, I am very proud of the Wartime Division. There is something which holds the Wartime Division distinct from the other divisions. >> Yes. >> We stopped the shooting right in Korea! Did you know that? >> Yes. >> [INAUDIBLE] July 27th, 1953, and the pep-talk union that was in Korea at that time [INAUDIBLE] the importance of [INAUDIBLE] battalion [INAUDIBLE]. >> Wow. >> So that is [INAUDIBLE]. >> Thank you. You know, actually, it's very nice to see that your memory of war is not so dark, but it's actually ... You know, you're ... He's a great storyteller. >> Yeah. >> And he has a very good sense of humor. I love the fact that your recollection is very pleasant. >> Yeah. >> I love that, that you're not holding pain and bitterness. So thank you so much, and you're absolutely correct. I also love the fact that you take so much pride in what you and the 14th Battalion contributed. I think every soldier who went to Korea should be very proud. It doesn't matter, like you said, whether you were in the front lines or the back line or in the office. It takes an entire military ... >> Yeah. >> ... not only one military but of many different United Nations, and then that's how we were able to stop fighting. >> Yeah. >> And, well, technically, the war hasn't ended, but look at me. I was able to, you know, gain freedom thanks to you and to all of you, and so all of them, I gave this heart. >> Yeah. >> Yay. Yay. Do you remember my heart with the flag, the American flag? Well, since they're Filipinos and not American, but I gave them this piece of ... >> Thank you very much. >> ... this piece of my heart. >> Much love, much love. >> Yeah, much love ... >> Much love. >> ... much love that all of you can remember my heart, my love, my gratitude. >> Thank you. Thank you. >> Thank you. Thank you. >> [FOREIGN LANGUAGE] >> Oh, yes. [FOREIGN LANGUAGE], and so again, everybody, these are my grandpas, my colloquial grandpas. Yay. [ Chatter ] >> So I'm so grateful that we came to meet you on such short notice, so, everybody, let's say ... What's a good Filipino word to say? >> [FOREIGN LANGUAGE] >> [FOREIGN LANGUAGE] >> [FOREIGN LANGUAGE] >> Thank you. Bye. >> Okay. Bye. >> [INAUDIBLE]