19500901 0000 186ett0 TF Drysdale
Escaping the Trap

The 41st Commando, Royal Marines, numbered about 240 officers and men, all volunteers. The unit had been formed in England in August and flew to Japan on 1 September. There it underwent some training in the use of American-made weapons. Later it made three raids on North Korean rail lines behind the front lines, following the Inch'ŏn landing on the west coast of Korea. In mid-November a decision was made to transfer the commando unit to northeast Korea, where it would be attached to the 7th Marine Regiment and used as a second reconnaissance company.

The commando arrived at Hŭngnam on 20 November and eight days later started north for the Chosin Reservoir. That evening it arrived at Koto-ri, where its commander, Lieutenant Colonel Drysdale, learned that it would continue its journey on the morrow and that he would be commander of a combat task force to open the road to Hagaru-ri.[08-2]