Korea is sometimes described as a ‘forgotten war’, and the involvement of British troops has been overlooked. Joseph Scott, who was just eighteen when he joined the Cameron Highlanders in Korea, has shared his memories of the conflict – and the unforgettable day in 1954 when Marilyn Monroe visited his base – in an interview with Scotland’s Greenock Telegraph.
“Grandfather Joseph, 80, of Kilblain Court said: ‘I have been a huge fan ever since.’
‘She came on stage and she didn’t even have to sing. She just stood there and everyone was cheering. There were thousands of soldiers and nobody had seen a woman for years!’
‘I was friends with a couple of Americans and they got me in to see it. It was incredible. She was a beautiful woman but I don’t even think I knew who she was back then.’
Joseph’s wife Catherine, who he met after he left the army, has been happy to share her life with Marilyn. Over the years Joseph has collected a number of photographs of the icon.
Catherine, 77, said: ‘Joseph is her biggest fan. Our grandchildren have bought him lots of canvas prints of Marilyn and I let him put them up!’
Joseph was posted in Korea along with his regiment the Cameron Highlanders after signing up at 18.
He said: ‘There was nothing in Greenock for young people my age. It was a desperate place, so I decided to join the Army.’
During his spell in the forces he was also diverted from Korea to the Suez Canal crisis.”