Skip to comments.MARINE MISSING IN ACTION FROM KOREAN WAR IDENTIFIED (PFC Richard Gzik, Recipient of the Navy Cross)
Posted on 07/10/2013 7:28:15 AM PDT by robowombat
MARINE MISSING IN ACTION FROM KOREAN WAR IDENTIFIED The Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office (DPMO) announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing in action from the Korean War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.
Marine Pfc. Richard S. Gzik, 19, of Toledo, Ohio, will be buried Sept. 28, at Arlington National Cemetery near Washington, D.C. On Dec. 2, 1950, Gzik and the other Marines of M Battery, 11th Artillery Regiment, 1st Marine Division, came under attack on the west side of the Chosin Reservoir in North Korea. It was during this battle that Gzik was killed in action and his remains were buried alongside the road leading to Hagaru-ri. Later that month, the withdrawal of U.N. forces from the Chosin Reservoir region made it impossible to recover Gziks remains.
In 1954, United Nations and Communist Forces exchanged the remains of war dead in what came to be called Operation Glory. All remains recovered in Operation Glory were turned over to the Army Central Identification Unit for analysis. Those which were unable to be identified, given the technology of that time, were interred as unknowns at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Hawaiithe Punchbowl. In 2012, analysts from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (JPAC) re-examined the case records and determined that advances in technology could likely aid in the identification of the unknown remains as Gzik. Once the remains were exhumed, scientists from JPAC used circumstantial evidence and forensic identification tools, including dental records and radiographs, to validate Gziks identification. Using modern technology, identifications continue to be made from remains that were previously buried as unknown. Today, 7,947 Americans remain unaccounted for from the Korean War.
For additional information on the Defense Departments mission to account for missing Americans, visit the DPMO web site at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo or call (703) 699-1169.
Citation for the navy Cross awarded to PFC Czik:
The President of the United States of America takes pride in presenting the Navy Cross (Posthumously) to Private First Class Richard Stanley Gzik (MCSN: 1114026), United States Marine Corps, for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy of the United Nations while serving as an Automatic Rifleman with a Provisional Rifle Platoon of Battery M, Fourth Battalion, Eleventh Marines, FIRST Marine Division (Reinforced), in action against enemy aggressor forces in the Republic of Korea on 2 December 1950.
When a hostile attack developed while he held a key defensive position to cover possible avenues of approach with his automatic rifle, Private First Class Gzik took full advantage of his excellent observation and field of fire and delivered accurate and effective fire upon the advancing enemy troops, killing or wounding many of them and completely breaking up the hostile attack. Although the enemy, now aware of his position, concentrated its strength in his direction in an effort to silence his deadly fire and neutralize his position, he courageously remained at his post and delivered a steady and deliberate hail of bullets into enemy positions, destroying a hostile machine gun and its surrounding crew. During this action, he was mortally wounded by hostile hand grenade fragments. By his outstanding fortitude, daring initiative and steadfast devotion to duty, Private First Class Gzik contributed directly to the repulse of an enemy attack, thereby upholding the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country. General Orders:
Authority: Board of Awards: Serial 637 (July 7, 1951)
Burial: Arlington National Cemetery
Plot: burial Sep 28, 2012 in section 64 grave 4401
Now his family knows at least. How many of those missing wound up in gulags? We probably will never know.
Welcome home, Marine. Your brothers have been waiting for you.