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Haktang ni

BROKEN ARROW

 

Belgium Citation   

The Volunteer Corps for Korea is mentioned in the Daily Order of The Army for :

 " Positioned as a patrol base, completely isolated at 3 Km, in front of the UNITED NATIONS ' lines on the hills nicknamed
                                               BROKEN ARROW at HAKTANG-NI


The Volunteer Corps for Korea has resisted heroÔrically to the repeated assaults of the numerically superior Chinese  troops during the days from 11 till 13 October 1951.

 " Its diminished STRENGTH NOTWITHSTANDING, has been able to maintain its positions intact after three days of heavy fighting, thereby inflicting heavy causalities on the enemy"

This citation entails the inscription "HAKTANGNI " on the colors of the unit.

Article 2 : The lanyard is conferred on the colors of the Volunteers Corps for Korea that has been already mentioned in the Daily Order of the Army by decree 447 dated 4 January 1952.

Article 3 :  Our Minister of Defense is charged with the execution of this decree.

Given in Brussels, 25 June 1953

Baudouin
King of Belgium

 

 

 

The battle of Haktang-Ni October 12th and 13th 1951 

by Lt-Kol Vivario commanding officer of the Belgian Battalion

 

 

The BUNC,( Belgian united nation command) now only 560 strong as a result of many of the 1st contingent of volunteers having returned home after their tour of duty, consisted of three companies : B and C-companies and the Heavy Weapons company  

US 3rd Division shoulder patch As part of the US 3rd Division, 
US 15th Infantry Regiment badge attached to its 15th  US Infantry Regiment "Can do "

  the battalion occupied an advance position on the hills of Haktang-Ni, about 3 kilometers in front of the main line of resistance. The "Broken Arrow" position was to serve as a patrol base for reconnaissance on the plains north of Chorwon. The limited strength of the battalion regretfully prohibited occupying the nearby Hill 317.On 10 October, the battalion arrived and set up its positions and immediately enemy artillery fire was aimed at it. Occasional artillery and mortar fire would continue the whole night and the following day and enemy patrols that night were stopped by extensive use of hand grenades. 

During the night of 11-12 October, several small enemy attacks were again repulsed. On 12 October, a patrol by B-company went up to the Palli Bong (Hill 488) and exchanged a fire fight with its Chinese occupants. Artillery fire was directed at the enemy positions who were observed to be disorganized by the attack. A patrol to the neighboring Hill 317 found an enemy ammo dump on the hill and destroyed it before returning to the lines. 

As night fell, the Chinese were observed to occupy Hill 317 and all through the night artillery fire would be directed on their positions there (a patrol the next day would confirm the effectiveness of the artillery fire from abandoned and destroyed weapons and traces of many wounded). No doubt this caused a serious delay of the Chinese attacks on the battalion's positions which started at 23.30 h by a severe attack on the southern part of the battalion's defenses. 

The enemy managed to infiltrate between B-company and Heavy Weapons company the so that the latter was effectively cut off and attacked from all sides. Sergeant CAUDRON directing the fire of flamethrowers of his pioneers section, defending an outpost  and MG gunner Private  KLAUSING were instrumental in repulsing these first attacks . Further attacks were launched by the enemy and the company commander, Captain DARGENT, personally manned an MG on top of his command post to allow the pioneers section to withdraw within the company perimeter . Mortar and artillery fire aimed directly in front of the company's positions helped stem the enemy attacks and by 01.00 these were diminishing. All this time, B and C-companies had been under mortar and machine gun fire and now the enemy directed its attacks on those positions. A counterattack finally chased the last of the attackers which had managed to enter part of the battalion's defenses. At 02.00 h new attacks were launched on the Heavy Weapons company but again these were repulsed. Shortly after, light grenades were fired and artillery fire on the battalion's positions increased. Everyone now expected a general attack but it proved to be the sign for a Chinese withdrawal. During the rest of the night small enemy patrols were observed but these did not attack but retrieved their dead and wounded from all but the immediate vicinity of the battalion's positions.. The battalion suffered 10 killed and 14 wounded. Post-battle examinations concluded that the BUNC was attacked by several enemy battalions of which 2 or 3 companies were put against the Heavy Weapons company  alone.

Early in the morning of 13 October a post was set up on Hill 317 and a platoon from C-company went on a reconnaissance patrol towards To Dong. Shortly after it fell under fire from the Chinese on Palli Bong, an order from 3rd Division was received to end the occupation of the Broken Arrow positions and to withdraw from this vulnerable outpost. Under cover of artillery fire and smoke screens, the battalion gradually withdrew unnoticed and savored witnessing, from its new positions, a futile enemy artillery barrage and night assault on its former, now abandoned, lines.

  

           Killed in Action during the battle at Haktang-Ni
BOGAERTS F.   Sdt   10/10/51   HAKTANG-NI  
DEGROOT C.   Sdt   11/10/51   HAKTANG-NI   
SCHOUTERDEN C   1 Sgt 11/10/51   HAKTANG-NI  
VAN DRIESSCHE W   Olt   11/10/51   HAKTANG-NI  
V.PUYENBROECK A   Sdt   11/10/51   HAKTANG-NI  
CHIRY J.   Sdt   12/10/51   HAKTANG-NI  
DEPREE J.   1Sgt    12/10/51   HAKTANG-NI  
CAUDRON C.   Sgt   13/10/51   HAKTANG-NI  
de HALLEUX J.   Olt-Slt   13/10/51   HAKTANG-NI  
KLAUSING R.   Sdt   13/10/51   HAKTANG-NI  

 

 

 

 Citation of Captain DARGENT, Heavy Weapons company :

"Has been, competently and authoratively, in command of the Heavy Weapons Company since its establishment. Has in all circumstances shown good judgment and calm valor, which he managed to convey to his entire unit. He was charged to defend, with two platoons of his company, an isolated rocky hill that overlooked the positions of the battalion. In this perimeter he withstood severe assaults by a supernumbery enemy, inflicting heavy casualties on them and destroying all that had entered the perimeter. He thus saved the entire battalion from possible destruction. During these actions, he personally moved the reserve machine gun of his unit to a new location and halted the enemy attack a few meters from his command post 

Corporal Deprins, pioneer platoon, was awarded the War Cross with palm (07-05-52):

"Has, on the night of 12 - 13 October, in an advanced position, shown total disregard of danger. After having emptied all magazines of his machine gun, he tried to stop the enemy's attack with his flamethrower. When the weapon malfunctioned, he maintained his cool and covered his fellow combatantís flamethrower by aiming several hand grenades at the enemy. Through lack of ammunition, he withdrew to his platoon's sub commander and borrowed hand grenades of him. This allowed him to save the lives of the sub commander and his section chief during the withdrawal: when he was situated in a pit with his two fellow combatants, he noticed a Chinese standing above him, automatic rifle at the ready; he withdrew the pin on a grenade and calmly lay the grenade between the feet of the enemy who was killed."

 

  Sergeant Caudron, pioneer platoon, posthumously awarded the Order of Leopold II, knight class with palm and the War Cross with palm (16-11-51):

"In the night of 12 - 13 October, he remained at the head of his platoon till the last minute and withdrew as its last man to the command post, thus covering the withdrawal of his platoon. Severely wounded during this action, he died of his wounds later that night."

 

 Private Klausing, Heavy Weapons company, posthumously awarded the Order of Leopold II, knight class with palm and the War Cross with palm (16-11-51):

"In the night of 12 - 13 October, (he) covered the flamethrowers with accurate and sustained fire from his machine gun; he inflicted heavy casualties on the enemy at very short range; he was killed in his post during this action."

  

Private Raussin, Heavy Weapons company:

"During an assault by the enemy, attacking the company's command post from the rear, he moved his machine gun on his own initiative and stopped the enemy attempt by heavy and continuous fire."

 

Corporal Friedrich, pioneer platoon ? :

"Protected, with calm and great coolness, the withdrawal of his platoon with heavy and sustained fire from his automatic rifle; inflicted heavy casualties on the enemy from short range."

 

Private Van Looy, pioneer platoon, received the War Cross with palm (07-05-52):

"In the night of 12-13 Oct. 1951, at Haktang-Ni, on guard in the southern advanced post, he stopped the first enemy assault through his coolness and complete disregard of danger, firing his flamethrower at a range of 15 meters. This action completed, he used his automatic weapon to cover the retreat of his platoon commander."

   

Lieutenant FRANCISSE
The heavy Weapons Compagny
Was a volunteer for duty in Korea, He fought bravely at all times and destroyed many of the communist forces. On 12 October 1951 at the battle of HAK DONG LY on the central front he was particularly outstanding in that he was principally responsble for the succesful completion of a defensive battle. His bravery is worthy of the highest commendation. It is for these reasons I present the SILVER STAR? Wha Rang Noking for distinguished military service  as authorized by the constitution of the Republic of Korea

Syng Man Ree

Sergeant Goossens, Heavy Weapons company:

"Covered the withdrawal of the pioneer platoon by heavy and sustained fire from his gun and prohibited an enemy attack on the company command post. His total disregard of danger allowed him to complete his mission, i.e. the protection of the command post during the entire night."

 

Military Decoration (Art. 4), 1st classWarrant Officer de Buck, C-company : Military Decoration (Art. 4), 1st class

"Designated to take a patrol to reconnoiter enemy positions on 13 October 1951. Despite fire from light armament, automatic fire and mortar fire, which was aimed at his platoon from three sides, he accomplished his mission calmly, intelligently and accurately. Has returned his platoon to the friendly lines without losses thanks to his cool and his influence on his men."

Later, during an attack on the battalionís positions on 14 December 1951, this senior NCO received the Military Decoration (Art. 4), 1st class, with palm (07-05-02):

"Excellent platoon commander, already cited in the Battalion's Orders for 13 October 1951. On 14 December 1951 at Nurum-Kogea, he volunteered to, accompanied by three men, take a Chinese observation post. Showed extraordinary courage and coolness during this patrol and was wounded by four machine gun bullets."

Later, commissioned and a 2nd Lieutenant, he would also receive the Order of Leopold II, officer class, "for his courage whilst serving in the volunteer corps in Korea with the United Nations" (11-08-55).

 

Sergeant Van Tongerloo, C-company:

"Accompanied a reconnaissance patrol as observer. Managed to signal accurate details on the enemy positions despite being under fire from mortars and automatic weapons firing at the patrol from three directions."

 

Sergeant Gadeyne, C-company by then promoted to 1st Sergeant received the War Cross with palm:

"In Korea, serving with the United Nations for over two years, first as section chief, then as assistant platoon leader. Has participated in all operations of the volunteer corps and a large number of day and night patrols showing in all circumstances authority, coolness and determination. On 13 October 1951, at Haktang-Ni, in command of a reconnaissance patrol, he managed with determination and skill to execute completely the mission entrusted to him and to extract his unit despite heavy fire from mortars and automatic weapons coming from three sides."