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"We had on our jackets… a round plaque, and it had a turtle with a tank sitting up on its back tied with a ribbon, and it had a .45 in each hand, had a sailor's hat on…, and the motto was 'You Call - We Haul - LST-1101.'" (Audio Interview, 11:20)

   Eldon Glenn Morrison
Image of Eldon Glenn Morrison
Eldon Morrison [2002]
War: Korean War, 1950-1953
Branch: Navy
Unit: Amphibian force (LST 1101)
Service Location: Great Lakes, Illinois; Korea
Rank: Metalsmith Second Class
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In 1952, with the draft looming over his head, Eldon Morrison enlisted in the Navy. He served on LST-1101 (later renamed USS Saline), delivering tanks, weapons, and supplies to the men serving on land in Korea. The 1101 once delivered 100 tons of rice to the Republic of Korea (ROK) soldiers. On a winter's day, the ship went behind the lines to pick up a war-weary division of Army troops, who took full advantage of the 1101's showers and galley. Their escort, a British cruiser, made sure that they were well protected, most importantly when they were carrying massive supplies of munitions. Morrison trained as a welder in the service, and he became a steamfitter in civilian life.

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 Audio (Interview Excerpts) (6 items)
Enlisting to avoid being drafted and assigned to the infantry in Korea; had relatives who served in Navy. (00:48) Basic training was tough for those "guys who thought they knew everything;" stories about Johnny, his chief, a tough character. (02:22) To California, assigned to a ship; started as a deck hand but asked to be switched to engineering; eventually learned welding, which is what he did coming out of the service. (01:26)
LST as the workhorse of the Navy, carrying everything from tanks to munitions to food supplies; ship's insignia and motto; picking up an Army division from the battlefield and offering them showers and whatever they want to eat in the galley; his ship awarded three battle stars during his service; British cruiser as their escort; once being fired on by shore battery; cruiser knocked out the battery; the 1101's cargo of fuel and ammunition at the time would have gone up had any shells hit. (07:28) Hearing of possible truce; transporting 500 Communist POWs in a prisoner exchange; all ship personnel issued gas masks because the MPs would employ gas if there was a disturbance among the prisoners. (02:30) Taking pride in the ship because it was built in Evansville, Indiana, near his hometown; appreciating the welding on the ship thanks to his training; after the service, meeting welders back home who had worked on the 1101. (01:15)
  
 

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  October 26, 2011
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