Y. S. Kim's American connections before coming to the United States in 1954.
- John Rich was a very distinguished photo reporter in the 1950s.
He took many photos during the Korean War (1950-53), and made
some of them available at his photo exhibition held at the
Korean Cultural Center in Washington, DC (2008). I went there
and noted this photo of an American hospital ship. I became
excited and asked the exhibition manager whether I could photograph
this photo. The manager said OK. She became impressed when I
told her I was on that ship twice.
The name of this hospital ship was "Repose." The Repose played a very important role in the Korean War (1950-53). During the period 1951-2, my father visited this ship frequently to socialize with its naval officers. I accompanied him twice. I was a high school student then in Korea.
- As a consequence, I was able to obtain some "made in USA" items
not available to Koreans. One of them was a short-wave radio.
With this radio, I was able to listen to the world and steal good
ideas from far-away places. I used to listen to Japan,
North Korea, Radio Moscow, BBC relayed from Melbourne, Australia.
I was also able to pick up Voice of America signals from California. In February of 1954, I heard Eisenhower's "state of the Union" speech. In May of 1954, three months before coming to the United States, I sensed a revolution was taking place. It was the Supreme Court's decision to rule the school segregation is unconstitutional.
- Indeed, this radio made me smarter, but I became tired of
listening to others. I developed my strong incentive to talk to
those far away from me. If you think my webpages are special,
this is due to my passion to talk to you.
Click here to see how
I developed my skill to talk to you using webpages.
- The Hospital Ship Repose was decommissioned in 1974, but the the
Repose community is still strong in the United States. Click on
to see what is going on.
You may also click on http://www.navsource.org/archives/09/12/1216.htm, to see various photos of this historic ship.
My photo with father, the day before |
my PhD commencement
in Princeton (1961)
My other American connections include the following photos.
- In December of 1953, General Maxwell Taylor visited my high
school in Seoul and gave a speech. In this photo I am greeting
General Taylor was the commander of the U.S. Forces during the final phase of the Korean War, and there were 350,000 US troops under his command. In 1955, he became the army chief of staff, and retired from the army in 1959.
In 1961, President Kennedy appointed him as the Chairman of Joint Chiefs, and designed Kennedy's Cuban invasion plan which included a nuclear confrontation with the Soviet Union.
In 1965, President Johnson appointed him as the ambassador to Vietnam, and he took care of the troop build-up in Vietnam. He was able to see the Vietnam war was not going to succeed, and resigned.
- After General Taylor went to Washington to become the chief of staff
in 1955, General Lyman Lemnitzer came to Korea as the commanding
general of the U.S. Forces in Korea. Here he is signing a document
with my uncle. The document was about the U.S. Army providing money
for the reconstruction of the Severance Medical Center in Seoul
which was originally constructed by American missionaries around
My uncle received his PhD degree in physiology from Northwestern University in 1933. From the American point of view, he was the No. 1 man in the Korean medical field. In 1945, he was one of the first Koreans to be called in by Americans as soon as they came to Korea to accept the surrender from the Japanese army.
He was fifteen years older than my father, and was like a grandfather to me. He used to get invited to a dinner every evening by high-ranking and/or wealthy people. Whenever I was hungry for good food, I used to go to his office just before the dinner time. Then he took me with him the dinner. I think I knew how to live even in Korea.
Ernest Hemingway used this Underwood typewriter to write his stories at his home in Key West, Florida.
The Underwood Typewriter Company had to make M1 carbines for the U.S. Army during
World War II.
- In 1885, Horace Underwood went to Korea as the first
Presbyterian missionary from the United States. My grandfather
was one of his trusted Korean friends. I was very happy to meet
his grandson and his wife in Urbana, Illinois in 2003. We spent
one afternoon to talk about many many things.
Underwood is a familiar name also to Americans. Horace Underwood had a brother named John. John T. Underwood was one of the pioneers of American typewriter industry and Underwood typewriters were dominant desktop machines until 1960, as Dell computers are these days.
When American troops came to Korea in 1945, they came with two different types of rifles. One was the M1 Garand (heavy) for combat purposes, and the other was the M1 carbine (light) for patrol purposes. Koreans call thoses M1 carbines simply carbine guns. In 1946, the Korean police received a bulk of carbines from Americans. The Korean army then received many more. Those carbines are still used by some Korean reserve forces.
When I was in Mexico in 1995, I noticed a Mexican police guard carrying one of the carbines. I asked him what his rifle was. He did not understand my English, but he knew what I wanted to talk about, and said "Em Uno" meaning M1. I took this photo of this man and his "em uno" carbine.
- I had a strong Christian background
before coming to the United States. My car's license plate
carries the name of the church where I was infant-baptized. Indeed,
my Christian background allowed me to have a better understanding
of the United States.
Yet, I am not too religious. I am always interested in translating Bible stories into history. Thus, I often get into arguments with clergy people. I wrote a number of articles based on the Bible. For instance, I wrote about King Herod.
- Herod Complex.
I hear about King Herod when I was a child. Herod was and
still is an evil man to me (according to the New Testament),
but I felt that I and my colleagues like him. With this word,
I can live peacefully with my professional enemies as well
- Garden of Eden based on the
story of Adam and Eve I heard from my grandmother.
- Nicodemus story
applicable to those who are not completely happy with their
- Click here for a story about Korea's first Presbyterian church in Korea.
- Herod Complex. I hear about King Herod when I was a child. Herod was and still is an evil man to me (according to the New Testament), but I felt that I and my colleagues like him. With this word, I can live peacefully with my professional enemies as well as friends.
- Moses was able to talk to God. How? He wrote five books about God.
They are called the Five Books of Mosed in the Old Testament.
How did I talk to Him?
- I had many difficult problems in the past. I always to go back to my Bible background for ultimate wisdom. This is the best way to live in the United States.
copyright@2009,2015 by Y. S. Kim, unless otherwise specified.
- Click here for his home page.
- First 4 years in the United States.
- Then 4 years in Princeton.
- Washington area since 1962.
- Travel around the world.