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Air Force Pays Respects To Fallen Kiwis In Korea

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Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Air Force Pays Respects To Fallen Kiwis In Korea

24 April 2009 - The crew of a Royal New Zealand Air Force Orion from No 5 Squadron paid their respects to New Zealander servicemen who lost their lives during the Korean War (1950-53) yesterday. 41 Kiwis were killed, 34 of whom are laid to rest at the United Nations Memorial Cemetery-Korea (UNMCK) in Busan. A total of 3,794 soldiers served in KAY FORCE during the Korean War. KAY FORCE arrived at Pusan, Korea, on 31 December 1950. The 16th Field Regiment went into action on 29 January 1951 and remained on active service for the next two and a half years.

Prior to the arrival of KAY FORCE, The Royal New Zealand Navy had committed six LOCH-class frigates to supporting UN naval operations. The HMNZS PUKAKI and HMNZS TUTIRA operated in the USN screening force for the Inchon Invasion, performing shore raids and inland bombardment.

The Orion detachment commander, Wing Commander Brendon Pett, and Corporal Nyssa Lynskey, the youngest member of the detachment, laid a wreath at the NZ Memorial opened by the Rt Hon Helen Clark in 2005. The service held special meaning for Cpl Lynskey whose grandfather served in Korea during the conflict and survived to come home.

Wing Commander Pett said "It was a moving moment for us all as we laid the wreath and paid our respects to the fallen Kiwis laid to rest so far from home. The memorial wall has the names of all those who lost their lives and the inscription at the entrance reads;

'We engrave your names in our hearts with love, we inscribe your names in our land with appreciation.'"

The No. 5 Squadron Orion and crew are preparing to return home having been involved in Exercise ROKKIWI, a joint training exercise with the Republic of Korea.

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