Head, Roy Earl, M/Sgt

 Photo In Uniform   Service Details
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Last Rank
Master Sergeant
Last Service Branch
Field Artillery
Last Primary MOS
3844-Field Artillery Gunner
Last MOS Group
Field Artillery (Enlisted)
Primary Unit
1951-1951, Korean POW
Service Years
1942 - 1951

Master Sergeant

Two Service Stripes

Two Overseas Service Bars

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by CW3 Richard Doty to remember Head, Roy Earl, M/Sgt.

If you knew or served with this Soldier and have additional information or photos to support this Page, please leave a message for the Page Administrator(s) HERE.
Casualty Info
Home Town
Last Address
Suan Bean Prison Camp, N. Korea

Casualty Date
Mar 11, 1951
Hostile, Died while Captured
Illness, Disease
Korea, North
Korean War
Location of Interment
Head-Benton Cemetery - Duffield, Virginia
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

Honorably Discharged WW II

 Unofficial Badges 

Artillery Shoulder Cord Cold War Medal Cold War Veteran Gold Star

 Military Association Memberships
Korean War Fallen
  1951, Korean War Fallen

 Photo Album   (More...

 Ribbon Bar

 Unit Assignments
US NavyU.S. ArmyArmy Garrisons49th Field Artillery Battalion
7th Infantry DivisionPrisoner of War
  1942-1945, US Navy
  1945-1947, Break in Service
  1947-1950, HHC, Army Garrison, Fort Riley, KS
  1950-1951, 3844, HHB, 49th Field Artillery Battalion
  1950-1951, 3844, 7th Infantry Division
  1951-1951, Korean POW
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1944-1944 Leyte Campaign (1944-45)/Battle of Leyte
  1945-1945 Western Pacific Campaign (1944-45)/Battle of Iwo Jima
  1945-1945 Ryukyus Campaign (1945)/Battle of Okinawa
  1950-1950 Korean War/UN Defensive (1950)
  1950-1950 Korean War/UN Offensive (1950)
  1950-1950 Korean War/CCF Intervention (1950-51)
 Colleges Attended 
University of Tennessee, Knoxville
  1945-1947, University of Tennessee, Knoxville
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

MSgt. Roy Head had served in WWII as a Firecontrolman 3rd Class aboard the USS Pensacola (CA-24), and was engaged in seven campaigns in the PTO.

He returned to military service and was stationed in Korea. where he served with the 49th Field Artillery Battalion, 7th Infantry Division. 

He was captured by the Chinese on 11 February 1951.  He died as a POW in the Suan Bean Prison Camp, North Hwanghae Province of North Korea  of mistreatment and malnutrition on 30 April 1951.

His remains were identified in 2009. He was interred in Head-Benton Cemetery in Duffield, Virginia.

Bronze Star with "V" Citation:
Headquarters, 7ID
General Orders No. 375 - 1 August 1951

The Bronze Star Medal with “V” Device is awarded to Sergeant First Class Roy E. Head, Artillery, United States Army, Headquarters Battery, 49th Field Artillery Battalion, 7th Infantry Division, who distinguished himself by heroic achievement near Oktang-ni [near Hoengsong], Korea, on 12 February 1951.

On this date, Sergeant Head was a member of an Artillery Liaison Section [Support Force 7 a.k.a. Task Force White] in support of the 23d Republic of Korea Army Regiment when the enemy penetrated to within small arms range to the hastily prepared defensive position of the section. An early morning attack by a numerically superior enemy force was directed at the small group, and they were showered with small arms, automatic weapons and grenade fire.

The small group was able to withstand the assault which lasted for more than two hours. Sergeant Head remained in his position, and his effective fire aided materially in repulsing the hostile force. Once again the enemy launched a determined attack, employing a still larger force. Realizing the ammunition supply was nearly exhausted and all avenues of escape cut, the valiant band of men, to prevent further bloodshed, surrendered to the enemy.

The heroic action displayed by Sergeant Head reflects great credit on himself and the military service.

Soldier Missing From Korean War Identified

The Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office announced today that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, missing in action from the Korean War, have been identified and returned to his family for burial with full military honors.

Army Master Sgt. Roy E. Head of Clinchport, Va., will be buried Saturday in Duffield, Va.  Head was assigned to Headquarters Company, 49th Field Artillery Battalion.  After the 1953 armistice, it was learned from surviving POWs that he had been captured in February 1951, marched north to a POW camp in Suan County, North Korea, and died of malnutrition a few months later. Between 1991 and 1994, North Korea gave the United States 208 boxes of remains believed to contain the remains of 200-400 U.S. servicemen.  North Korean documents turned over with one of the boxes indicated the remains were exhumed near Suan County.  This location correlates with Head's last known location. 

Analysts from DPMO developed case leads with information spanning more than 58 years.  Through interviews with surviving POW eyewitnesses, experts validated circumstances surrounding the soldier's captivity and death, confirming wartime documentation of his loss. 

Among other forensic identification tools and circumstantial evidence, scientists from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory also used dental comparisons and mitochondrial DNA – which matched that of two of his brothers -- in the identification of the remains.  

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