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  • Edward Riederich

When One Took on All

Updated: Feb 7

During the Korean War, on June 7, 1951 the communists launched an all out attack on a strategic hilltop the 31st Infantry Regiment. Manning a machine gun was Pfc, Jack Hanson. The maelstrom of bullets going both ways wounded the four riflemen holding the position alongside Hanson.

As they were evacuated Hanson was told to relocate to a more tenable position. Meanwhile, the charging enemy forces were threatening to overrun.

Disregarding the order, Hanson held his position to continue engaging the enemy. As others fell back, they reported that Hanson was single-handedly putting up a dogged defense. He never arrived at the fallback position.

Near dawn, his company counterattacked. When they regained their previous positions, they found Pfc. Hanson lying in front of his gun emplacement. His machine gun ammunition was depleted and in his right hand was an empty .45 caliber pistol. In his left hand was a blood soaked machete. All around him were the bodies of 22 slain enemies.

For his valiant last stand, Hanson was awarded the Medal of Honor.

In the the Korean War

In the early morning hours

A lion who did roar

A soldier who did not cower

When others fell back

He kept his position

He continued the attack

Held fast to the mission

One against them all

On history's written page

But he answered the call

And continued to engage

When his ammo was depleted

He grabbed his machete

He would not be defeated

He stood battle ready

No more ammo and no gun

Yet he still did remain

A whole army against one

Around him 22 slain

He wasn't forced to respond

This hero volunteered

To the call he went beyond

He chose bravery over fear

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