Robert T. Reid

Robert T. Reid was born in Lowell, Massachusetts in 1932. Like others of his generation, he lived through the shock and the hardships of both the Great Depression and World War II. Also like others of his generation, he was drafted into and honorably served in the Armed Forces of the United States to defend his country and the people of South Korea.

At 21 years old, Sgt. Reid experienced a culture quite unlike that he knew from his youth. He went from a city known for its historical contributions to American industrialization to a nation ravaged by violent civil war. One of the most prominent memories of his time in Korea was the sight of people living on rice paddies who were simply trying to live from day to day. He also remembered the bitter cold during the winter experienced by all those involved in the war.

Sgt. Reid’s service in Korea was short – only about a year (1953-1954) – yet in that time, he was a witness to history. With his platoon, he was present when the last mortar was fired before the cease-fire. Even though the war ended shortly after his arrival, he continued to serve in Korea for a time after the cease-fire and was among the last soldiers to leave the peninsula.

As a result of his service in Korea, he earned four military service awards: the Combat Infantryman Badge, the National Defense Service Medal, the Korean Service Medal with Bronze Service Star, and the United Nations Service Medal.

Upon returning to the United States, Robert returned to his beloved Massachusetts and re-joined the private sector. He began working at Teradyne as a Quality Control Inspector, remaining in that career for over 25 years.

In 1955, Robert married the love of his life (Lois A. Wilkins) and shared a home for 47 years until she passed away in 2002. From their loving home, they raised six children – 3 boys & 3 girls. Their family eventually grew to include 20 grandchildren and 24 great-grandchildren, many of whom chose to continue Sgt. Reid’s patriotic legacy through their own military service.

Special thanks to Robert’s daughters, Lois Reid Dubay and Julie Reid Brissette, for sharing recollections and information as well as helping with the interview process. Their contributions were invaluable to creating this profile.

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-- Training Camp (Photo courtesy of Reid family)

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-- Relaxing with buddy. (Photo courtesy of Reid family)

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-- The Platoon (Photo courtesy of Reid family)

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-- Robert and Lois (Photo courtesy of Reid family)

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Korean War - Key Events

January 12, 1950

In a speech to the National Press Club, U.S. Secretary of State Dean Acheson outlines a U.S. Pacific defense posture that includes Japan and the Philippines but does not explicitly include Korea. In fact, he states that, “so far as the military security of other areas in the Pacific is concerned, it must be clear that no person can guarantee these areas against military attack.”

These events are taken from the Encyclopedia Britannica

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