The idea of a chronology was first conceived by Col. George Rasula, USA (Ret.) while serving as a board member of The Chosin Few. In hearing various accounts of what happened when, to whom and where, he saw the need of an orderly, chronological accounting of what really took place at Chosin.
Through the years this accounting grew in scope and depth to this, the next step, its publication. The decision to publish electronically was made for these economic reasons: Publishing in printed form would have been very expensive given the graphics it contains which would have rendered the final cost per volume prohibitively expensive to many veterans and their families.
With assistance from his map expert, Mel Coolbaugh, and his graphics-pro son, Jon, Col. Rasula was able to assemble an immense amount of information and distill it down to a concise and accessible 232 pages.
The battle of the Chosin Reservoir, also known by its Korean name, "Changjin," pitted U.S. Marines and Army units in a death struggle with vast numbers of Chinese forces in the bitter, life-sapping cold of November - December 1950.
In this disc, one of America’s most historic conflicts has been given context and perspective, enhanced by digital maps, overlays and photographs. Return to the “Frozen Chosin” and follow the compelling action, with insightful interpretation, from surprise outbreak to valiant withdrawal.
Korea has been considered the “Forgotten War.” It needn’t be."
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
During his 32 years of service in the United States Army, first as a private soldier in the regular army to a colonel of infantry, George Rasula fought in three wars: As a rifle platoon leader in the Palau operation (attached to the 1st Marine Division on Peleliu), the Korean War as a regimental staff officer (and infantry rifle company commander attached to the 1st Marine Divison during the Chosin Reservoir campaign) and in the Vietnam War for two tours, first as a regimental advisor in Tay Ninh/Iron Triangle during the early phases of Viet Cong activity, and years later as Inspector Gen. of XXIV Corps on his last tour. Col. Rasula served as a deputy brigade commander in Alaska after which he served as Army Attache to Finland, both tours enhancing his expertise in cold weather operations.
Lt. Rasula first went to South Korea in 1948 where he served both in the Inchon and Seoul areas, as well as flying the 38th parallel as an observer during the growing border tensions of 1949. When the war began he was with the 31st Infantry Regiment in Hokkaido where he had served as a platoon leader and rifle company commander in K3/31, then a regimental staff officer in the operations section into Korea, promoted to captain during move to North Korea in October 1950 where he participated in the Chosin campaign.
Melville J. Coolbaugh
A native of Colorado, Melville J. Coolbaugh entered the U.S. Army in 1950 and had just completed his training when the Korean War began, shortly finding himself a member of Company L, 31st Infantry, in Japan as they were preparing as part of the Tenth Corps for the landing at Inchon.
When the Corps went to North Korea he participated in the 3rd Battalion operations near the Fusen Reservoir during the earliest actions against the Chinese, followed by the battle with two Chinese divisions east of the Chosin Reservoir. Although wounded three times and suffering frostbite injury, he was able to fight with the provisional Army unit attached to the 7th Marines during the breakout to the coast. After hospitalization he returned to and fought with the 31st Infantry until summer of 1951, returning to the States and being discharged as a Sergeant First Class.
After leaving the service Coolbaugh used the GI Bill and graduated from the Colorado School of Mines as an Engineer of Mines, resulting in engineering experience at many underground mines and tunnels in North America. In 1984 he founded Coolbaugh Minerals, Inc., a company which evaluates ore deposits and mining properties, an important role in the mining industry. In this work he employed computer programs to draw maps showing the three-dimensional size, shape and content of mineral deposits and to draw maps of the terrain above the deposits. It was this map making capability which became known and the need recognized when he joined the survivors of the Chosin campaign, the Army Chapter of The Chosin Few.
Mel Coolbaugh and George Rasula merged their talents by developing the visual side to The Chosin Chronology during the early 1990s. The highly accurate maps of North Korea with story telling overlays opened the door to new understanding of battles through a technique seldom employed to portray day-by-day battle actions of organizations from divisions to platoons. It has been Mel Coolbaugh’s understanding of the Chosin terrain enhanced by years of professional knowledge and technical expertise which played a major role in making this book possible.