Bobby Jack Ruddle
Bobby Jack Ruddle was born March 19, 1931, in Whitmer, West Virginia, the son of Marvin and Nina Warner Ruddle. He attended grade school at Riverton and high school at Circleville and was a member of the United Brethren Church of Riverton. Bobby was a fan of sports and country music, his brother Jerry noting that his favorite song was “Satisfied Mind.”
Bobby was a hard worker; he would hoe corn and make hay on his father’s and uncle’s farms. After a day in the fields he and his brothers would jump in a nearby river for a swim. According to his brother, for his size, Bobby was the strongest person he ever knew, giving as an example the fact that he would ride his bicycle four miles a day to milk the family cow while his younger brother rode on the handle bars and a cousin rode on the seat. In his spare time, he would drive a truck hauling logs and dye wood to the local mill.
Bobby joined the Marines on March 19, 1950. He took basic training at Parris Island, South Carolina, then was transferred to MCAS Cherry Point, North Carolina. While there, he met and married Doris Tetterton of Washington, North Carolina. Bobby’s next transfer was to Camp Pendleton, California, and from there to Nevada where he underwent “cold weather” training.
Bobby was sent to Korea in February 1953, arriving on March 12. He was a member of Company D, 7th Marine Regiment, 2nd Battalion, 1st Marine Division. While in Korea, he took part in the “Nevada Cities Outpost War,” comprised of three hills forward of the main line of resistance guarding Seoul. These peaks, which were under Marine surveillance, were named for the three Nevada gaming towns of Vegas, Reno, and Carson. The Marines considered being there a gamble; when the chips were down, “red” was a losing color.
|Sgt. Bobby Jack Ruddle was killed on April 19, 1953, on the main line of resistance to the left of Outpost Carson, which faced the main Chinese outpost of Ungok. At the time of his death, his wife Doris was expecting a child, and, in his last letter, written eight days before his death, Bobby wrote, “I’ll be glad when that little one comes along of ours. I guess it won’t be too long any more.” Daughter Terry Louise was born in May 1953.|
Bobby Jack Ruddle’s body was returned to the United States and was buried in the Oakdale Cemetery in Washington, North Carolina.
Information and photos submitted by Jerry Ruddle (brother)
West Virginia Archives and History welcomes any additional information that can be provided about these veterans, including photographs, family names, letters and other relevant personal history. For more information contact Constance Baston at (304) 558-0230.
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