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The Final Duty Station This forum is presented by Retired GySgt Bill Conroy. It is a listing of those that have received orders for their final duty station. These Marines have given their all. We now give our honor.

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Old 07-31-2005, 09:31 AM
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Karl King, 80, a news journalist, Marine hero, former prisoner of war, author

Karl King, 80, a news journalist, Marine hero, former prisoner of war, author and loving husband and father, passed away Monday, July 25, 2005.
Funeral: 9 a.m. Friday in Forest Ridge Funeral Home Chapel in Hurst. Interment: Dallas-Fort Worth National Cemetery with full military honors. Visitation: 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday at Forest Ridge Funeral Home.

Karl was born Dec. 5, 1924, in Dallas. He attended Adamson High School in Dallas for one year, in 1939. In October 1939 he enlisted in the Texas National Guard in Dallas at the age of 14. The battery commander entered his date of birth on his enlistment papers as 5 December 1920. Karl enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps in San Francisco, Calif., on Nov. 29, 1939, still at the age of 14. The recruiting officer requested "senior service priority discharge" from the Texas National Guard. He attended boot camp in San Diego, Calif. His first duty assignment was prison chaser, naval prison, Mare Island Navy Yard, Vallejo, Calif., from March 1940 to June 1940.

In November 1941, orders were cut for stateside on the first available transportation, USS Chaumont, due in Manila Bay, Philippines, on Dec. 10, 1941. On Dec. 8, 1941, at 2:58 a.m. (Manila time), ONI received word of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Sgt. King was on the switchboard at Cavite Marine Barracks, and received a message for OD to alert all hands. He was on assignment from Manila when Japanese planes bombed the Navy yard and part of Manila on Dec. 10.

Isaac C. Williams Jr. and Sgt. King swam 2 1/2 miles to Corregidor from Bataan. He was assigned to Company L, 3rd Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment. At age 17, he was the youngest man in the 4th Regiment. He was wounded by enemy fire April 14, 1942. He shot down an enemy plane over Corregidor with a .50 caliber machine gun. Sgt. King was taken as a prisoner of war May 6, 1942, and was held as a prisoner of war until Aug. 29, 1945. He was honorably discharged March 27, 1947, with 80 percent disability. His disability was changed to 100 percent due to residual effects of the POW experience.

Some of his combat experience included engaging the enemy in three major battles during the Philippine campaign: Battle of Longoskawayan Point, Battle of Big Pocket and Beach Defense Corregidor.

Some of his decorations include a Bronze Star with V, Purple Heart with two oak leaf clusters, Naval Presidential Citation, two Army Presidential Unit Citations, POW Medal, Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal with one star, Philippine Presidential Unit Citation, Philippine Defense Medal with three battle stars, K'ang Chan-nien Chang (Chinese War Memorial Medal for Service in China), Asiatic Theater, China Service, American Defense U.S. Combat and Victory medals; the Armed Forces Expeditionary Ribbon and the American Campaign Ribbon; and Sharpshooter for Rifle and Pistol.

After his military service, Sgt. King attended Texas Christian University in Fort Worth and obtained a B.A. in journalism. He was a member of Veterans of Foreign Wars, American Defenders of Bataan and Corregidor, Marine Corps League, Veterans of the OSS, Military Order of the Purple Heart, Society of Professional Journalists and friends in high places club.

He was a broadcast journalist for 25 years. Some of the major stories he covered was the airline hijacking at El Paso in 1960, the Kennedy assassination and Jack Ruby's shooting of Lee Harvey Oswald and subsequent trial. He also wrote the book "Alamo of the Pacific," which tells the story of the famed "China Marines" on Bataan and Corregidor and what they did to the enemy as POWs.

Survivors: Loving wife of 35 years, Peggy King; daughter, Karen S. Noah; grandsons, James A. Noah and Thomas B. Noah; great-granddaughter, Myranda thi Noah; and a host of friends and extended family members who will all miss him dearly.
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