"Aces of The Eighth" by Jack Fellows

Photos from Gene Gould – Korea 1952-1953

This is an e-mail I received from Gene Gould on 24 September 2008.  His many great photos follow!

“Hi Jay,

It is always good to talk to the old gang, although there are not a lot of us left.

No I always wanted to fly, and when I got back from Korea in July of 1953 I was stationed in Niagara Falls and was the supply officer for the 47th Fighter Interceptor Squadron.  I had a friend who gave me flying lessons in a T-6 and also let me fly a Bell chopper (like the ones in Mash).  I was in the 8th Fighter Bomber Wing HQ Squadron and then when they tossed me back into Base Supply I was reassigned to 8th Air Base Group.

I was always into photography and had a darkroom before I was 20.  I took my Zeiss Ikon 120 to Korea with me,  The PX was sending film to Seoul to develop, but even there the water wasn’t good.  Just before Christmas of 1952 the PX got in a couple of Kodak Signet 35mm cameras.  Sold them for $95, which on a 2nd Lt. Ground Pounder’s pay was a whole weeks pay.  But I had a camera to take Kodachrome.   We mailed the film in to Honolulu for processing.  Film and processing was about $4.  One of the things about the jobs I had was I could always go to the Motor Pool and check out a Jeep.  So I drove all over the countryside taking pictures,  Kodachrome slides in those days had a film speed of 24.  You needed steady hands.

I also took quite a lot on the flight line.  In addition, I knew the guys in the Hobo Photo quite well and they gave me some pictures.  Black and White.  They couldn’t take color.  I had my 80th birthday in August.  I suppose you know there are not many of us around any more.

The Koreans are building a new cultural museum at the Fortress.  About 50 of my Korean pictures will be on permanent display there.  They wanted me to come to the grand opening, but I have two artificial hips and I was sort of afraid to do a trip like that.

I would be happy to send you all of the airplane pictures and also the ones from the base photo shop for your website.  It would be easier for me to just burn them on a CD and mail it to you.  Then you could choose which ones you wanted to put on the web.  So send me your mailing address and I will get them to you in the next couple of weeks.  In the meantime, here is a loaded Blue Tail for you.  I didn’t take any pictures on the flight line after we got the F-86s.

I’ll attach a picture of me from Korea.  I was dressed up to go to Japan to get books for the I&E classes and also stuff for the hobby shop as I remember, because we didn’t wear “blues” around the base.

I am

Gene Gould”

Please note that most of these descriptions don’t correlate to the pictures as displayed but are presented for the historical value of the comments. This is through no fault of Gene, but to your editor’s graphically-challenged incompetence- Tex

File No. Photo Description Remarks

GG-001 2nd Lt. Gene Gould Photo taken near ramp in Spring of 1953.
Wearing blues without scarf. We usually
wore a scarf with blues, but no tie.

GG-002 F-80 leaving on night I only took a few pictures in black and white
mission with two 1,000 pictures on my Zeiss-Ikon 120. This is one
bombs. of my better ones. Changed to KodaChrome
shortly after this. This picture was probably
taken in December of 1952. See addendum.

GG-003 F-80, “Here’s How” This is one of the other B&Ws I took. This
taken the morning after our first snow. I
think in December of 1952. Fairly early in
the morning. Cold! As I remember around
25 degrees.

GG-004 F-80 “Patricia” The “Yellow Tails” were the 80th Fighter
Bomber Squadron. This picture was taken
in the winter of 52-53 early in the afternoon.
It was cold because you can see the
Crewman standing by the plane is all bundled up. Early afternoon from the looks of the shadow.

GG-005 & GG-006 are the same picture w/ different brightness

GG-007 & GG-008 F-80 Mission Ready This was taken at sunset. This alternate
Bomb load consisted of two 500 pound
bombs and four 250 pound fragmentation bombs.

GG-009 The ramp at sunset I have always liked sunset pictures. With
Kodak Signet, you set the shutter speed for
1/25, set the f stop for F 3.5 and hoped for
the best. KodaChrome then was ISO 25.

GG-010 F-80 Takeoff I would have loved to have the equipment
and a telephoto lens that I have now. The
runway was quite a distance from the ramp.
The structure in the background is a new
hangar they were building on the West side
of K-13 at the 51st FIW.

GG-011 F-80 leaving for mission This plane is 35th FIS, “Blue Tail” Taken
Shortly after lunch in early 1953 from the looks of the shadow. The K-13 control
Tower is behind the plane. Because the
Prevailing winds were from the North and
the runway ran north and south, they taxied to the south end of the runway and took off

GG-012 F-80 on late mission This is another F-80 from the 35th FIS This
was taken in late afternoon. He is taxiing
South. The sun is pretty low in the West.
You can tell by the length of the shadow .

GG-013 Same picture

GG-014 Same as GG-011

GG-015 Same as GG-012 & 013

GG-016 Same as GG-014

GG-017 35th FBS Parking Area Late afternoon early 1953. Standing about even with control tower facing South. Note tents in background and low hills East of

GG-018 T-33 of 35th FBS Each squadron had a T-33 at this time.
Early 1953. Building in background is the
Operations office for the 35th FIS.

GG-019 Same as GG-018

GG-020 F-94C This Lockheed F-94 is from the 319th
Fighter Interceptor Squadron. They were
assigned to K-13 but not part of the 8th FBW. They were located on the East side of the field just North of the 8th. After running into wreckage of slow flying aircraft on night missions they were at least temporarily grounded while I was there.

GG-021 F-86F The 51st Fighter Interceptor Wing was
stationed on the West side of K-13. I met a
number of the pilots who used to come over
to the 8th Officers Club. I think they liked
ours better than theirs and we had a pool
table. A bottle of Canadian Club or or
Seagrams VO was $2.00 at the bottle store.

GG-022 F-86F This F-86 from the 51st had just returned
from a mission. Speed brakes are still out.
Wing tanks are gone, and if you look
You’ll see the gun ports are dirty. This was
taken very late in the afternoon. Notice
shadow. This would have been in March
or April of 1953.

GG-023 F-86F Same picture but cropped and resized

GG-024 F-84s These F-84s were brought in for a mission
The next morning. They were from Taegu
and starting from Suwon gave them more
time on target for missions to the Yalu
dams and hydroelectric plants. I think this
was the big joint mission in May of 1953.

GG-025 F-84s More F-84s for the big mission in May.
Note tail markings are different than the
GG-024 picture

GG-026 F-84s Same as 025 but brighter

GG-027 F-84s Same as 024 but less contrasty

GG-028 Panthers Marine Panthers in for mission. This
Squadron is the one that Ted Williams
was flying with. His airplane was badly
damaged the next day and he crash landed
at K-13. Wheels up and skidded a major
part of the 9,000 foot runway.

GG-028a Panthers Same as 028 with different contrast

GG-029 Panther I walked over to the parking area just before
dark. About a ten minute walk from the
Quonset I lived in right behind the Officers
Mess Hall and club. They were still fueling
The Panthers and I can’t resist a nice sunset

GG-030 Panther Same as GG-029 but a little lighter so you
see the sky better.

GG-031 Panther This one is just coming into the parking
area at almost dark.

GG-032 B-26 This a black one. Also at Suwon for the big
Hydroelectric plants mission. Not sure
which squadron it belonged to.

GG-033 B-29 There is an interesting story about this
B-29. The Fighter-Bombers closed the
roads in the day time and then the B-29s
from Okinawa would come in and bomb
the backed up traffic. This one was hit by
anti-aircraft fire on a mission at Choak-tong
in April of 1953. See picture GG-034 for
hole in wing just inside the starboard
outboard engine. The guys on duty at the
field told me that you could see the flames
from a long ways off. We didn’t have the
facilities to make that kind of structural
repairs at K-13 and it certainly wasn’t
in condition to fly out. It was there a long

GG-034 B-29 I rounded up a couple of mechanics who
hanging around the B-29 and had them stand
in the hole for reference purposes.

pGG-035 C-124 I took these pictures of the C-124 with
the cargo doors open at K-14, Kimpo, one
afternoon. They were the biggest thing
around until Lockheed built the C-5A many years later. I rode from Tachikawa to Seoul
in one of these when I got to Korea.

GG-036 C-124 Closer view of cargo bay.

GG-037 & GG-038 C-119 Combat cargo was on the West side of the
runway at K-13 just South of the 51st FIW.
Most of the planes that carried personnel
and supplies into K-13 were C-119s with a few C-54s. Everyone preferred riding in
a C-54 over a C-119. K-13 was on the rail
line that went all the way from Inchon to
Seoul and South to Pusan. So we got most
of our supplies by train.

GG-039 & GG-040`Mariner I went on a trip to Itasuke Japan where our
major maintenance was done. I no longer
remember the reason for the trip. It may
have been a boondoggle to get away from
the base for a few days. This Martin
Mariner was parked on the ramp and I had
My camera with me. The mission of course
was air-sea rescue..

GG-041 50,000th Sortie I cannot explain this photo of the color
Picture of the 50,000th Sortie flown by
2nd Lt. Warren Guibor in October of 1952,
about a month before I arrived at Suwon.
The men at the base photo lab gave me
The black and white photo and claimed they \ took it. I remember the faces of the three
pilots in that photo. I don’t know if the pilot
in this color photo is Warren Guibor or not.
Unless someone from the 80th FBS who was
there in October of 1952 and knows about
the picture it will remain a mystery of why
the two different pictures exist and which is
the real one.

Gene continues:

“General Comments Regarding Weather:

During the time I was stationed at K-13 from November 1952 until July of 1953, the weather in the Suwon area was quite nice.  In terms of flying weather, I have no recollection of any overcast days.  I actually remember very little rain.  During the winter of 1952-53, we had a few nights when the temperature dropped near zero, and the daytime highs were under 30 degrees.  It was a great deal like a winter in the Washington, D.C. area as far as temperature goes.  We had a couple of light snows.  The most was around two inches.  The Base Operations Officer at the time lived in the same Quonset that I did.  I am certain that no mission was ever cancelled for weather.  All of my photos show clear skies with occasional wispy clouds.  June and July were warm but not uncomfortably so.  I certainly do not remember being bothered by heat or humidity.  My memory tells me that a warm day was in the mid-80s.

At this time there was a big push in the air war to get North Korea to come to the table and sign an armistice.  There was one period when they were sending the F-80s out at night.  Considering the level of navigation instruments at that time it sounded a little dicey to me.  The worst event that occurred was a C-46 hospital plane flown by a Greek crew with a very limited command of English had stopped at K-13 to pick up some of our people and take them to the hospital in Japan.  One of the F-80 pilots had started his take off run from the South end of the runway when the C-46 pulled out onto the runway at about the middle right in front of the F-80.  The control tower had been screaming at him to stop, but he didn’t understand.  The pilot in the F-80 tried to get it off the ground and clear him, but with the two large wing tanks and two thousand pounds of bombs on an airplane that only had 3700 pounds of thrust he didn’t make it.  He actually got the plane off the ground at about the 4,000 or 5,000 foot mark to almost clear, but he hit the top of the C-46 killing himself and everyone on board the C-46.  We all spent most of the rest of the night picking up the pieces of airplanes, people and bombs.  It was not a good night at K-13.

I hope you enjoy the pictures that I took while I was there.  I was only in Korea a little over eight months because my father, then 53, hit the end of the bridge over the Chetco River at Brookings, Oregon, nearly killing himself.  He was not expected to live and the Red Cross took me home.  Because I only had a little less than three months to serve on my one year tour, they elected not to spend the money to send my back.  Instead I served the last two years of my service time as the Supply Officer of the 47th Fighter Interceptor Squadron (F-86Ds) at Niagara Falls AFB, NY.

I was released from active duty on June 19th, 1955.  I started work with Boeing in Seattle in 1957 and retired on December 31, 1990.  So while I was not a pilot, I was around airplanes for just about all of my working life.  I started saving airplane pictures when I was about 5 in 1933 and have among other things the original news release photos from Barrow Alaska when Wiley Post crashed killing himself and Will Rogers.  I also have a photo my dad took when he took me to the airport in Rochester New York to see the Winnie Mae.”


  1. Wow do you still live in the Seattle area? I would enjoy getting together sharing all of my Dad’s pictures and I have the famous Headhunters book we scanned for the org. Give me a call 253-228-8267. John Robertson

  2. Oh my gosh! I never knew much about my Dad’s time in Korea as he didn’t talk about it. I received his ribbons at the Capitol in Madison, WI a few years back. 2 weeks ago I was at my Uncle’s house and he said he had been given some papers of my Dad’s and thought us kids should have them. Dad’s Mess Pass was one of them and I saw it was the 8th Fighter Bomber Wing. I had some time today and thought I would look up anything I could find on it. I was just looking at the pictures and I am sure that that is Dad in the front on picture 18. He was a mechanic. He was Millard J Demmon. They also called him Muley, Duck, or MJ.

  3. I’m wondering if there is an e-mail address for Gene Gould.

    My Uncle 1st. Lt. Kenneth Tallant was stationed in Suwon, K-13, during the same time.
    Ken was killed on May18, 1953. He was a fighter bomber pilot.
    He was one of the pilots that flew with Major Charles Loring when he gave up his life on Sniper Ridge.

    Was wondering if Gene Gould knew my Uncle or had any information on him.

    Thank you to Gene Zehr for posting that squadron picture. Ken and Frank Ray are both in it.
    They were friends for those few short months Ken was stationed in Suwon, k-13.

    thank you,
    Niece of Kenneth Tallant.

    • I don’t think Gene Gould ever joined the Association. Any body have any contact info for him?


      I’ll also post this in the May newsletter.


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