Remembrance of Things Past
Writer / Kara Reibel
The Crump family wanted to preserve their father’s memories. After all, Leonard has had an exciting life. He is a Tech High School graduate, whose older brothers took over when his father died suddenly when Leonard was only nine. Then having all three of his older brothers head off to WWII inspired Leonard to enlist in the Army in 1948.
“One brother was a Seabee in the Navy, one was a Merchant Marine and the other was in the Army Signal Corps,” shared Leonard. “I wanted them to be proud of me.”
“When I joined the Army, it was peace time. Then the North Koreans invaded South Korea, and playtime was over,” said Leonard. It was a secret that the U.S. troops were being mobilized and sent over to Asia. Leonard recalls, “I was with the 187th Airborne Regimental Combat Team. Low and behold, the 1st Calvary Division beat us there and cleared the area, and we headed straight to the mess hall.”
Leonard’s unit would earn five Battle Stars during the Korean War.
“Dad has shared a few of these stories over the years, but we wanted to document them on camera. I realized I had never heard the stories told in order before,” said Joe Crump. Filming his dad was natural for Joe, who owns Crump Publishing, Inc.
With a professional recording studio temporarily set up in the Crump’s home, Leonard lit up with the camera’s red light. He spoke with clarity and thoughtfulness as he recalled his life experiences, most of which were of his Korean War adventures.
It is easy to see where his daughter, Kristina Crump Wagner, gets her talent in front of a movie camera. Kristina is best known for playing Felicia on “General Hospital” and now has been seen on the Hallmark Channel in “When Calls The Heart.” Recently, she and her brother Joe created a documentary inspired by her graduate thesis on German and Japanese internment during WWII. “Children of Internment” has won awards at film festivals across the globe.
Carolyn and Leonard Crump have been married for 59 years. They have 3 children — Joe, Dan and Kristina — and six grandchildren.
“It’s so meaningful to have Leonard share his story,” says Carolyn. “Our kids and grandchildren live all over the United States, and they will want to know Grandpa’s story.”
Visit atFishers.com to view a portion of Leonard Crump’s interview. And visit ChildrenOfInternment.com for more information.