Eugenio Quevedo

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Co. F 1950-51 (Deceased 2021)



65th veteran Eugenio Quevedo received a letter from Michael Iglesias asking for information about his uncle, MSGT Victor M. Iglesias and his good friend SFC Angel Ocasio, both of them killed in Korea. This was Eugenio’s response:

When I saw the photos of MSGT Victor M. Iglesias, they brought back many memories. I remember that occasionally he would talk, along with SFC Angel. L. Ocasio. about how he had been all over Europe during WWII, now in Japan and Korea and how he intended to retire from the Army after completing this tour of duty. Destiny changed all that for… on April 23, 1951 the 2nd Platoon, Fox Company, under the command of 1st Lt. Chamberlain, a graduate of West Point, went on a recon combat patrol into so-called “no man’s land”. After a few miles forward, we observed enemy activity about 400 to 500 yards away. We were given the order to fire. We really surprised them but as the saying goes “all hell broke loose” and they responded with mortar, rifle and other weapons. As we fired our rifles, the soldier on my left, shoulder to shoulder, was hit thru the helmet and his forehead, scattering his brains out. He had arrived recently as a replacement and his olive green fatigues were still like new. He was unknown to me. Of course, we were unaware that we had encountered a large unit of the enemy – the CCF and NKPA and the start of the 1951 Chinese Spring Offensive across the width of the Korean peninsula. 

At about 9:30pm, we were hit with a tremendous Banzai attack with all types of weapons and blaring trumpets and whistles. I was with another buddy in a foxhole far to the left of the CP (Command Post). I think my buddy only had a Colt 45 pistol and had started covering our field of fire from left to right to avoid enemy infiltration. A few hours later, we ran out of ammo and tried using my cartridge belt ammo but to no avail. When pulling the trigger, my rifle wouldn’t fire. The bullets had nicks on the cartridges caused by falls when hitting the dirt while in combat. These dents, probably, I believe, caused the rifle’s firing mechanism to malfunction when pulling the trigger. That’s when out of nowhere, SFC Ocasio comes to our foxhole and drops a couple of bandoliers then leaves. He had been supplying the line with ammo. I loaded the rifle with the new ammo and it was back to business. My loyal Garand started blazing away. I had christened my rifle Virginia and carved the name on the right side of the stock; she was then my sweetheart, now we’ve been married for 53 years. 

As the battle continued, we both prayed for dawn to come and finally morning came amid the smell of smoke and burnt powder. The enemy had pulled back after being repulsed. We fixed our bayonets and went downhill where wounded enemy soldiers were being taken prisoners and cared for by the medics. Then we found out. Both Sergeants Ocasio and Iglesias had been killed in action. I believe that Sgt. Ocasio after supplying and leaving my position on his way back to the CP was hit with a burst of a burp gun. I remember Lt. Chamberlain saying that when Sgt. Ocasio failed to come back to the CP, Sgt. Iglesias went looking for him while the battle was raging on, and like Sgt. Ocasio, was killed with a burp gun burst… maybe by the same enemy soldiers. 

SFC Ocasio and MSGT Iglesias were experienced soldiers, valiant and well-liked by everybody. To this day I still remember them and the others killed, wounded and missing in action. Because of their sacrifices we enjoy freedom and they should never be forgotten.

Thanks to Eugenio Quevedo and Michael Iglesias for their permission to publish this letter.
December, 2006



Eugenio Quevedo, a tireless spokesman and advocate on behalf of the 65th for the past 22 years died at the age of 95 in New York City. Quevedo was born in 1926 in Playa de Ponce, Puerto Rico. He served in the 65th’s Co. “F” during 1951. I met him at the first fundraiser we organized in September 1999. Throughout the years Quevedo and other veterans attended many events in the nine years it took us to complete the film and even after the film premiered. It was a great group. We worked hard, had lots of fun and became very close.

Quevedo was the one veteran who was with me the longest and attended about 50 events. I loved Quevedo dearly since he had become the father figure I never had. He always had a calm, dignified demeanor. He was always inquisitive asking a million detailed questions. Quevedo became a celebrity providing interviews to a number of media outlets. And he grew to become quite an accomplished and eloquent public speaker. He spoke truthfully about his war experiences, never glorifying war and always willing to admit his fears. He and his lovely wife, Virginia, attended many of my barbecues. So we were not just colleagues in our work with the 65th, we became family.

Quevedo missed his first COVID vaccine appointment and it had been rescheduled. But before he could get the vaccine, he contracted COVID and was hospitalized for five weeks finally losing his battle on May 20, 2021. Five days before, he called from his deathbed to say goodbye. It was the greatest gift he could have given me. I listened to his every word as he thanked me for the work I had done on behalf of the 65th. He wanted me to know how much he loved me and the rest of the “gang”. He said he was 95 years old, had no regrets and his tired body was ready to go. I thanked him for his years of service to me and my film. They were the longest 37 minutes of my life which I will always treasure.

I have truly enjoyed my 22-year journey with our Borinqueneer veterans. But the hardest part of my job has been, and continues to be, seeing so many of them leave us in recent years. It has felt like a cumulative stab to the heart and the passing of Quevedo has been the deepest cut of all. I wouldn’t have had it any other way. 

Noemi Figueroa Soulet, Editor


Eugenio Quevedo of Company F was interviewed on May 19, 2000 in New York City.

Eugenio Quevedo de la Compañía F fue entrevistado el 19 de mayo de 2000 en la ciudad de Nueva York.

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