A special recognition

Sep 14, 2020 by

Scott brothers awarded Korean Ambassador for Peace medals

THE KOREAN Ambassador For Peace Medals awarded to the Scott brothers. (Courtesy Photo)

Published in the September 14, 2020 edition.

WAKEFIELD — Recently, 88-year-old former Wakefield Selectman and former Superintendent of the Wakefield Municipal Light Department James Scott, a veteran of the Korean War, accepted the The Korean Ambassador for Peace Medal on behalf of both himself and his late brother Gerald F. Scott (MIA Korea). James served in the U.S. Navy during the Korean conflict from 1951-54 as an aviation boatswain’s mate on the USS Palau CVE- 122. The medal has special significance for Jim for many reasons as he lost his only brother in the same war.

MEDALS were presented to James Milton Scott (seated left) for his Korean War service. Accepting on behalf of his late uncle Gerald was James Michael Scott, USAF Retired (seated right). The medals were officially presented by David Mangan (rear), Wakefield’s Veteran Services Officer. Mangan is also a veteran of the Vietnam War. (Courtesy Photo)

On Saturday, September 19, Jim’s brother, Sgt. Gerald F. Scott, would turn 91 years old. At age 22, Gerald went missing during the Korean War; his remains have yet to be returned. States Scott, “My brother served out of love of country, family, and with great respect for those who serve. I was deeply honored to accept this medal on his behalf.”

The commemorative medal was awarded posthumously to his brother Sgt. Gerald F. Scott, who went to Korea in 1950 with the Second Infantry Division of the Eighth Army. Gerald went missing during one of the war’s worst massacres, in the Hoengseong Valley south of Seoul in early 1951. He was taken prisoner in Massacre Valley and was immediately listed as MIA. It is believed Sgt. Scott died during a “death march” from South Korea into North Korea. Gerald had previously served a number of years in the occupation of Europe in Heidelberg, Germany right after WWII. Joining this police action meant he helped feed the hungry and keep law and order right after the war’s end. Gerald was also the leader of the U.S. Army band.

Sgt. Scott received his military notice just one day before he was to start his sophomore year at Boston College. If Gerald had started his college year the very next day and received his notice just one day later, he would have been able to put off his activation for the duration of the fall school term. The difference of one day altered his fate and cost him his life. His family has always been proud of his service in both Germany and Korea on behalf of his country and what his country represents.

States James, “My brother paid the ultimate price for his country. I had already enlisted in the Navy when I answered the knock at my parents’ front door to receive the telegram from the U.S. Army stating that my brother was missing. Still, I was absolutely sure that joining the war effort was the absolute right thing for me to do as well. I now want to recognize the heroism of my brother and all who have served and have come home, as well as those who may never return home. Gerald’s life was cut short; we often think of the life he did not get to lead.

“Yet, ultimately, I am so proud to see that the country of South Korea is now thriving. This success is as a result of the efforts of my brother and so many other Americans and allies. Modern South Korea is now seen as a real success story. These forces allowed South Korea to rise from one of the poorest in the world to an economic powerhouse. The actions of those who served and those we lost changed that nation’s future. We should all be proud of their collective efforts.”

The Korean Ambassador For Peace Medal awarded to the Scott brothers is an expression of appreciation from the South Korean government to the service men and women who served in the Korean War. These medals were presented to James Milton Scott for his Korean War service. Accepting on behalf of his late uncle Gerald was James Michael Scott, USAF Retired. The medals were officially presented by David Mangan, Wakefield’s Veteran Services Officer. Mangan is also a veteran of the Vietnam War.

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