CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Robert Wilmoth said he had to re-read it three times when he first saw that a day of honor was being held for Korean War veterans in Charleston.
"I just couldn't believe it," said Wilmoth, who served in the war in 1950, when he was 17. "I'm happy they're finally acknowledging it was a war. We have truly been forgotten."
Wilmoth, of Ivydale, disarmed enemy mines and worked with demolition warfare techniques during the war.
"It was hell on earth," said Wilmoth, who suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder.
"When he came back home, no one was there to even shake his hand or thank him," said Wilmoth's wife, Lucille. "No one recognized what they did for our country."
U.S. Navy Cmdr. John O'Brien traveled from the Pentagon on Saturday to honor West Virginia's Korean War veterans with an array of the state's military personnel during a ceremony at the war memorial at the State Capitol Complex.
O'Brien travels the country with the Department of Defense's 60th Anniversary of the Korean War Commemoration Committee to ensure that people like Wilmoth are rightfully recognized.
"We will work tirelessly to make sure the American people never forget your courage and heroism and your continued selfless sacrifices," O'Brien told the audience of veterans outside the war memorial. "'The forgotten victory is truly one worth remembering.'"
Saturday marked the 62nd anniversary of the United Nations' 1950 amphibious invasion of South Korea at the port city of Inchon -- a turning point in the Korean War.