• Kathy Winkler Studio

Staff Sergeant Reckless


After reading the book, “Reckless” - a celebrated war horse, and unbeknownst to me, a statue sculpted of Reckless carrying ammunition shells and other combat equipment had been unveiled on July 26, 2013, in Semper Fidelis Memorial Park at the National Museum of the Marine Corps, located in Quantico, VA.


So, once I found out about this beautiful heroine, I could hardly wait to see Reckless for myself, but then COVID interrupted. Jerry and I finally made it out this past Friday to see for ourselves. Nothing I could write could do justice for the memories of this great war horse, so you will just have to read the book. But, know this; for her exemplary service to the Marine Corps, Reckless was awarded two Purple Hearts (for the wounds received during the Battle of Outpost Vegas in Korea), a Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, a Presidential Unit Citation with bronze star, the National Defense Service Medal, a Korean Service Medal, the United Nations Korea Medal, a Navy Unit Commendation, and a Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation. She would wear these awards on her horse blanket, plus a French Fourragere that the 5th Marines earned in World War I. Not only that, she was promoted a few times, the last time to Staff Sergeant.


And, yes, I will most likely read this book again. I loved the rich history of the Korean War and the comradery of the soldiers she supported.


A quote by Lieutenant General Randolph McCall Pate rather summed it up nicely.

“I was surprised at her beauty and intelligence, and believe it or not, her esprit de corps. Like any other Marine, she was enjoying a bottle of beer with her comrades. She was constantly the center of attraction and was fully aware of her importance. If she failed to receive the attention she felt her due, she would deliberately walk into a group of Marines and, in effect, enter the conversation. It was obvious the Marines loved her.”