Joseph Barna puts a pen to paper before every veterans' holiday and significant war event.
A frequent contributor to the Hazleton Standard-Speaker's letters to the editor, the Freeland man writes about the men and women who served their country and the sacrifices they made.
"I write because I don't want people to ever forget about the wars," and those who fought in them, he said.
Today marks the 60th anniversary of the Korean War armistice - and Barna is hoping readers take a moment to check out his words.
"There were a lot of stories back there, and if I don't write, people might not know about them," Barna said.
Barna was 21 when he found himself in Korea with the U.S. Marine Corps.
He was wounded three times in his 13 months of battle. One injury - a deep puncture from a bayonet - would have been fatal had it not been for a young Navy man who stitched him back together.
With the worst of his profuse bleeding stopped, Barna immediately rejoined his brothers in battle.
"I survived, I don't know how I survived but I did," he said.
Barna arrived in Korea in June 1952 with 6,000 other soldiers.
"To give you an idea of the magnitude of the war, within a month, they had to fly in a couple thousand more (soldiers) to replace them. We had a lot of casualties, many, many casualties," he said. "I lost a lot of buddies."
Barna was scared when he landed in Korea. It was like jumping into a hole when you can't see the bottom, he said.
With his Weapons Company, Anti-Tank Assault Platoon, the 5-foot-8 corporal carried a 70-pound flame thrower. A few weeks later, he was given a rocket launcher and then started using a machine gun.
It was non-stop combat.
"I lived in the mountains for 13 months, and that's where all the battles were," he said. "There was cold food - the rations, and there were days that we had no sleep for two days. I found out you could do it if you had to do it."
To make matters worse, American troops were greatly outnumbered, the 83-year-old said. Allied forces lent their support to U.S. soldiers, but China sent in 1 million of its own to assist the enemy.
"We were outnumbered seven to one," he said. Marines were ready for an attack every day or night, and Barna never knew if he'd live to see the next day.
In Barna's division alone, more than 5,800 men were killed in action. Thousands more were wounded.
"When I tell people this, they don't believe it," he said, "or they forgot about it."
The war began in June 1950, when more than 75,000 soldiers from the Soviet-backed North Korea crossed into the pro-Western Republic of Korea in the south. The United States began aiding the south the following month, and until the war's end, had sent more than 480,000 troops, according to the New World Encyclopedia. Each side fought to see the Korean peninsula united under its own political ideology.
The United States' dead numbered almost 37,000. Additionally, more than 92,000 Americans were wounded; 8,200 went missing in action and more than 7,200 were taken prisoner of war.

Fighting continued until a cease-fire agreement was reached July 27, 1953. Barna remembers it like it was yesterday.
"I was on a ship out of Korea on my way home. I can still see the land in the background from the shop," he said. "It was announced that they had just called a cease-fire. I saw guys crying (tears of joy) on the ship."
Barna went home to marry the girl whom had sent him a letter every day. He and the former Eleanor Wasielowski married a few months after his return.
Barna, who belongs to the Order of the Purple Heart and Disabled American Veterans, also wrote an article about the war for a recent edition of American Legion magazine. He's received responses from across the nation, and said he's glad people are reading.
Today he will be at the Korean War memorial in Washington, D.C., to commemorate the cease-fire 60 years ago. He said more than 6,000 people are expected. He'll be taking two of his great-grandchildren.
"It's going to be a memory for me," he said, "and they won't forget it.", 570-455-3636