Korean MemorialKorean War & Korea Defense Service Veterans, Lake Co. (FL), Chapter 169

W. Larne Gabriel extension of Fushi-to Story

Dear Mr. Pfahler,

Recently I was surfing the Internet looking for any link I could find regarding an orphanage I worked with in 1969/70 while I was station with the 7th Infantry Division at Camp Casey, Korea. Much to my delight I stumbled upon your Korean War Veterans site and the story of “The Orphans of Fushi-to Island and the U.S.S. Saint Paul.”

As I read the story a familiar name jumped off the page, Kwak Sun Yong. Even though 20 years has passed from your photo of Mr. Kwak to the one I had taken in 1970, they seem to be a match.

The Kwak Sun Yong I knew in 1970 was the director of the Yang Ju Child Care Center in Tongduchon, Korea (aka Dongduchon). He and his family ran an orphanage for babies and young children. He had spent his life dedicated to serving others through his orphanage work and was a kind and gentle man. Over the years I lost track of the orphanage and the Kwak family and believe the orphanage has either closed, consolidated or changed names.

Around 2003 his middle daughter called my mother to inform our family that Mr. Kwak had passed away. She had left a phone number but I was unable to contact her through it.

My first question do you have any follow on history that would link your Kwak Sun Yong from the U.S.S. Paul story is the same one I knew in 1970 in Tongduchon, Korea.

Secondly, I decided to develop a web site dedicated to Kwak Sun Yong, the children of the Yang Ju Child Care Center and the GIs who gave both their time and money to support it. The purpose of my web site is to provide a source of free photographs, taken at the orphanage, to the children (now adults) who called it their home.

I never have done anything like this before and the site is still under construction the address is www.koreanorphanage.com I would hope both stories tell the broader point of American servicemen and women helping the indigenous population wherever they go. Even if we couldn’t link him to the same person you have a great story I would like to use.

While my site is a .com site it is not for commercial services or profit. When I am done posting the dozens of photographs I have, they would all be made available to the former orphans or anyone associated with the orphanage for free.

Again thank you for telling your story. It brought back that special feeling of helping those less fortunate than yourself. Any help or information regarding this matter that you could provide would be appreciated. I have also attached a photo I took of Kwak Sun Yong in 1970.


W. Larne Gabriel, former CW-4 USAR
8821 NE Juanita Drive
Kirkland, WA 98034