Deactivated August 22, 1950 and replaced by the 5th RCT
Date of death: December 18, 1994
Charles Beauchamp graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, Class of 1930. He retired as a U.S. Army Major General.
The third and final regiment of the 3d Division, the 7th Infantry, which had come from Fort Devens, Massachusetts, by way of Japan, landed at Wonsan on November 17. It was commanded by West Pointer (1930) John S. Guthrie, forty-two.* Its artillery support was the 10th FAB, commanded by West Pointer (1933) Walter A. ("Bing") Downing, Jr., forty-three.[15- 32]
*At that time, five of the six Army regimental commanders in X Corps were West Point graduates, Herb Powell of the 17th Infantry being the exception. Four of them (Beauchamp, Guthrie, Harris, and MacLean) were from the class of 1930. Excluding Powell (47) and Moore (50), their average age was 42.5 years.
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The new commander of the 34th was Charles E. Beauchamp (pronounced boshamp), a West Pointer (1930), who until then had been commanding the 32d Regiment of the 7th Division in Japan. To assist in the challenge confronting him, Beauchamp brought the 32d's S3, William T. McDaniel, a West Pointer (1941) to be S3 of the 34th.[5-43]
Beauchamp, at age forty-two, was the youngest regimental commander in Korea so far, and the greenest. During World War II he had not served with a combat unit. He had fought the war in the ETO in rear area staff jobs, specializing in logistics. After the war he requested a troop command but did not get it until March 1950, when he took over the 32d Infantry. He had spent the postwar years on the staffs of the Infantry School, the Armed Forces Staff College, and the Army's Counter-Intelligence School. He remembered that Walker had ordered him to Korea because "I was younger than most of the regimental commanders in the Far East." He had never met Bill Dean.[5-44]
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In his debut to combat, Beauchamp, like Martin, Stephens, and Meloy, was full of fire and brimstone, determined to make the 34th fight. Later he wrote: "We could have withdrawn on the night of July 19/20 with probably no losses. I feel that to some extent I influenced General Dean to stay on the 20th. I felt very confident on the evening of July 19th that we could hold the enemy out of Taejon another day and believe I so told General Dean."[5-45]
The visitors closely scrutinized Eighth Army's senior field commanders. Ridgway had nothing to say about the division commanders, but he judged that "some" regimental commanders were "very poor." They were too old and lacked "combat experience and aggressiveness." He named no names, but undoubtedly he was referring to the three regimental commanders in the 1st Cav (Rohsenberger, Nist, and Palmer) and the 24th Infantry's Horton White. Although both Dick Stephens (21st Infantry) and Hank Fisher (35th Infantry) were considerably overage for regimental command, they were doing well, as were the "youngsters," Michaelis (27th Infantry), Beauchamp (34th Infantry), and Moore (19th Infantry). Replacements being sent by the Pentagon didn't help. "Three out of five were over fifty," Ridgway wrote.*
The attack went off, per schedule, at dawn on August 14. It was raining hard. Because of that, no FEAF aircraft appeared, but the artillery laid down a ten-minute barrage.
Again carrying the burden of the attack, John Hill's 9th Infantry occupied the center. Beauchamp's 34th and Brad Smith's 1/21 were on the left; Ned Moore's 19th was on the right. Joe Walker's 2/9 smartly took its first objective; but thereafter everything went wrong, and the attack fizzled out all across the front.
The shattered 19th and 34th regiments were simply physically and mentally incapable of further offensive action. After an average gain of 500 yards against fierce NKPA resistance, Task Force Hill ground to a halt.
Beauchamp, Charles Edward
[Col. CO 34thIR]
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