Corporal Roland C. Holder
H & S Company, 2nd Engineer Battalion
"Every once in a while, I will say a prayer for all those lives that were lost in The Korean War.
May God bless them."
"There was a big battle going on not too far from where we were because they were hauling the wounded and those who had lost their lives past us using a temporary pontoon bridge to cross the river. They had jeeps with two stretchers mounted on each side. We were happy when this day was over and we could go back to our campsite."
During the Korean Conflict the Battalion sailed with the 2d Infantry Division from Fort Lewis, Washington. The Division was committed soon after landing at Pusan and spearheaded a drive north to the Yalu River where the Communist Chinese Intervention began. The immensity of the Chinese attack soon forced the Division to withdraw down the peninsula. During this action the 2d Engineers were ordered to fight a delaying action while the rest of the Division fell back to regroup. From 25 November until 30 November the Battalion fought off the advancing Chinese before it was overwhelmed at Kunu-Ri. After burning and destroying all usable equipment, the few men still alive were captured by the Communist Forces.
The 2d Engineers were built back to full strength and were still supporting the Division when the final cease-fire was given. During Korea, the Battalion had been awarded ten more battle streamers: UN Defensive, UN Offensive, CCF Intervention, First UN Counteroffensive, CCF Spring offensive, UN Summer-Fall Offensive, Second Korean Winter, Korea Summer Fall 1952, Third Korean Winter, and Korea Summer 1953. The Battalion also received its second Distinguished Unit Citation for the action at Hongchon and two Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citations: Naktong River Line and Korea. Company B received a third Distinguished Unit Citation for Chipyong-Ni.
The 2d Engineers then moved with the Division to Ft. Lewis, WA for two years until called to Alaska. On 1 March 1954 they were re-designated the 2d Engineer Battalion (Combat) and following their tour in the 49th State were transferred, less personnel and equipment, to Department of the Army control on 16 December 1957.
On 14 June 1958 the 2d Engineers were reborn at Fort Benning, Georgia with the reactivation of the 2d Infantry Division where they assumed the mission of training Engineer soldiers. 11 September 1961 saw the unit enter into an Intensified Combat Training Program. Upon termination of the training and upon being designated a STRAC unit in March 1962, the 2d Engineer Battalion entered into specialized training in order to acquire a highly trained readiness posture commensurate with the unit's STRAC Mission. The Battalion was reorganized under the ROAD concept, gaining a bridge company and four additional line platoons. This reorganization was completed in November 1963.
Our most sincere gratitude to Cpl. Roland Carl Holder and his son Dan for the use of their photos. You are highly encouraged to visit their web site for a more detailed history of Cpl. Holder's Korean experiences. May God bless Cpl. Holder and all other Korean vets for their contributions to our freedom. May they live forever and enjoy the democracy they helped to preserve for all of us.