A Korean television station will be visiting the Armed Forces History Museum on Monday, June 3 at noon. The station is making a documentary on ex-Korean POW’s and will interview the museum’s volunteer, Bill Allen.Bill Allen is a guest speaker and volunteer at the Armed Forces History Museum. Bill’s military life began shortly after graduation in July of 1949, when he enlisted in the army. When North Korea invaded South Korea on June 15, 1950, the 24th Infantry Division, to which Bill was assigned, was sent. On January 1, 1951, and at the tender age of just 19, Bill was captured by the Chinese military troops and marched to a POW camp located on the Yalu River on the Chinese and North Korean border. He was held there until August 11, 1953.
While in service, Bill received the Combat Infantry Badge, Purple Heart Medal, Bronze Star Medal, Prisoner of War Medal, Good Conduct Medal, Japanese Occupation
National Defense Medal, South Korean Defense Medal, United Nations Defense and United Nation Service Medal. Bill is also the author of the book, “My Old Box of Memories”, in which he describes his 31 months as a prisoner of war.
Today, Bill speaks about his life as a POW. He is also involved in working with men and women returning from combat in a program called “Out Reach”. This program, at the James A. Haley Veteran’s Hospital in Tampa, FL, supports those with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The program educates these brave warriors on the lifelong effects of PTSD, not only on themselves, but their families as well. Bill’s speaking engagements enlighten people about the struggles associated with being a POW. He spends Tuesdays at the Armed Forces History Museum interacting and speaking with visitors about his plight.