INDIANAPOLIS – Hoosier and U.S. Army veteran of the Korean War received the Republic of Korea’s Ambassador of Peace medal during a ceremony today officiated by Maj. Gen. Courtney P. Carr, the Indiana National Guard Adjutant General.
Marion M. “Bud” Mason, an Indianapolis native, earned many commendations for his three-year military service to the nation, but today he got another on his 87th birthday, more than 62 years after he retired.
“It’s always special for me to stand in front of men from this period of our nation’s history and recognize them for their efforts”, said Carr, who pinned Mason with the peace medal. “It’s a powerful reminder of the sacrifice our fathers and grandfathers made on our behalf.”
The Korean Ambassador of Peace Medal was originally presented to veterans who served in the U.S. peacekeeping force in Korea after the conflict ended. South Korea now awards the medal to all eligible veterans who served during the Korean War from June 25, 1950, to July 27, 1953.
“I was honored to serve. I love this country, and I always will,” said Mason.
Mason’s brother, Donald, made a trip from Texas to join in the ceremony. He received the peace medal in August, and he and Marion’s daughter, Renee Justice, were instrumental in making sure his brother received his too.
Prior to joining the military, Marion worked for the Allison Division of General Motors for two years. He then enlisted in the Army on Jan. 23, 1951. Mason was an Army paratrooper and served with the 7th Infantry Division in Korea. His final Army assignment was at Fort Benjamin Harrison, and he retired as a corporal in January 1954.
Mason’s other decorations and awards include the Combat Infantryman's Badge, Parachute Badge, Pathfinder Badge, Sharpshooter Badge, National Defense Medal, Korean Service Medal with three bronze service stars, United Nations Korea Service Medal, Korean War Service Medal, Army Presidential Unit Citation, Army Meritorious Unit Citation and Korean Presidential Unit Citation.