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Korean War Memorial Committee of Central Massachusetts
P.O. Box 16568, Worcester, MA 01601
1-800-343-0939 ext.110

TODAY MARKS 50TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE OUTBREAK OF THE KOREAN WAR AREA VETERANS REMEMBER FIRST CASUALTY FROM WORCESTER

Worcester, Massachusetts, June 25, 2000 - Fifty years ago today, 135,000 North Koreans crossed the 38th parallel into South Korea, in a bold move of communist aggression that marked the outbreak of the Korean War. The year was 1950, and, by 1953, when the armistice was signed, 189 brave service men and women from Worcester County numbered among the 33,651 from across our nation, who made the supreme sacrifice in Korea, giving up their lives for freedom.

"During this 50th Anniversary of the War, communities around the country are organizing events to show our nation's gratitude. Central Massachusetts is no exception," said Francis R. Carroll, General Chairman of the Korean War Memorial Committee of Central Mass. Today (Sunday), at 12:00 p.m., members of the Korean War Veterans Association and the Worcester Veterans Council will gather at McKeon Square to remember Robert E. McKeon, USA, Worcester's first casualty, who was killed in action on July 5, 1950. Four generations of the McKeon family are expected to be present for the ceremony.

Mr. Carroll then described two events being planned for September 17th. The first activity is a free Forum discussion of the War and the lessons learned, to be held in Worcester Polytechnic Institute's Alden Hall at 1:30 p.m. A reception with refreshments will follow. Admission is free, but seating is limited, so tickets will be required.

The second event, a 6:00 p.m. Salute to our Korean War Heroes, at Mechanics Hall in Worcester, will feature a patriotic performance by one of the original Irish tenors, John McDermott, and a spectacular tribute by military and political leaders, as well as international dignitaries. Tickets for this event are $40. In addition, for $250, those attending will not only be admitted to the Salute but also to a 4:30 p.m. United Nations Buffet, where they can meet the honored guests and dignitaries. Anyone interested in more information or tickets for these September 17th events should call 1-800-343-0939, ext. 234.

The Korean War Memorial Committee of Central Mass. has been sanctioned by the Department of Defense as a "Commemorative Community" and is committed to organizing similar events over the next three years. The ultimate goal of these activities is to raise funds to build a Korean War Memorial at Worcester's Washington Square. Donations can be sent to The Korean War Memorial Committee of Central Mass., P.0. Box 16568, Worcester, MA 01601.

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