Hugh E. Greathouse
Sergeant 1st Class
U. S. Army
Korean War
Dates of Service: 07/26/1948 - 08/23/1957
Platoon Sergeant, 187 Airborne Regiment

Born in Frankton, Indiana, a farming community, Hugh was one of four children of Delco Greathouse and Lillian Billingsley Greathouse. When he was "five or six years old" his father was struck by a train and killed. Mrs. Greathouse moved the family in with her widowed mother, Nora Billingsley, who lived on the family farm. Hugh grew up working on the farm, driving a combine and cutting hay, among other chores. Graduating from Frankton High School in 1948, he entered the U.S. Army, completed basic training at Fort Knox, Kentucky, then jump school at Fort Benning in Columbus, Georgia. Assigned to Company G, 2nd Battalion, 508th Infantry Regiment, he entered the 11th Airborne Division at Fort Campbell, Kentucky. He shipped out with the 508th for Korea from Oakland, California. Eventually his unit entered Pyongyang but when the Chinese attacked south, the 508th retreated to Seoul . "We had a bunch of guys wounded and some killed," he recalls of the winter retreat. Hugh was among the casualties, wounded in the right arm on February 12, 1951. He recuperated at an army hospital in Japan, then at another at Camp Atterbury near Indianapolis. After recovering Hugh was assigned to the 45th Infantry Division of the Oklahoma National Guard as a platoon sergeant, and returned to Korea. There he made one combat jump in an effort to rescue American prisoners of war. "When we got to where they were supposed to be they were gone," he recalls. "We found some of them about three days later where they killed them. They had taken them down the railroad track in a tunnel and killed some of them." Hugh spent much of his time on a hill called Sandbag Castle, where he earned a Bronze Star for heroism in action after bringing in North Korean prisoners. Hugh left the army in May of 1957, then, months later, joined the U.S. Air Force. Sent to Sheppard Air Force Base in Wichita Falls, Texas, he was trained in photo interpretation and assigned to the 2nd Reconnaissance Technical Squadron. He spent four years in Europe, and a year and a half at Clark Air Force Base in the Philippines as the Vietnam War began. There, Hugh interpreted reconnaissance film of Vietnam taken from RF-4 Phantom jets and similar aircraft. Hugh later served in Langley, Virginia and Germany. In the mid-1950s he married Dola Jean Scott. (They would have three children from Dola Jean's first husband, who was killed in Korea.) Hugh retired from the U.S. Air Force in 1968. The family chose to reside in Shreveport to be near Dola Jean's family in Arkansas. Hugh worked many years for Western Electric before retiring in December of 1991. Dola Jean died in 2000. In June of 2008 he married Peggy Willis who has one son.