<b>BUPYEONG-GU, Republic of Korea</b> - U.S. Army Garrison-Yongsan leaders participated in a wreath-laying ceremony July 11 to honor Korean War dead and to help dedicate a new Korean War Monument.

<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bupyeong">Bupyeong</a> is one of 10 administrative districts in Incheon. Camp Market, a small U.S. Army depot, is located in Bupyeong.

U.S. Army Garrison-Yongsan Commander Col. Dave Hall and Command Sgt. Maj. Ralph Rusch lay a wreath and burned incense during the ceremony.

More than 50 Korean War veterans attended the ceremony along with about a dozen American employees from nearby Camp Market.

Bupyeong officials unveiled the monument last month.

During the war, Bupyeong was the site of a heated battle as Republic of Korea and U.S. forces advanced to retake Gimpo Airport and Seoul.

"The victory at Bupyeong placed the Allied Forces at a significantly favorable position in reclaiming Seoul," said Bupyeong Mayor Park Yoon-bae. "The battles in the Bupyeong area were arguably the most intense battles that occurred on the way to Seoul from Incheon where the Allied Forces landed ... General Douglas MacArthur visited this area to encourage the troops."

Park thanked the USAG-Yongsan commander for attending the ceremony.

"I have no doubt that this will contribute to a stronger relationship between the Republic of Korea and the United States," he said.

Hall said he was honored to be invited to the ceremony.

"I am grateful to be with you to help honor the sacrifices of the Korean and American heroes who paid the ultimate price securing the liberty and freedoms of the people of the Republic of Korea," Hall said during his remarks. "Our alliance is one that was forged in war and strengthened in peace."

After the ceremony, Republic of Korea veterans in their 70s and 80s shook hands with the Garrison commander and command sergeant major and gave them a tour of the monument.

"I am proud to have made strong and lasting friendships with our Korean partners," Hall said. "Ceremonies like this give us the opportunities to honor our heroes and make a stronger alliance."

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16