“We Were Soldiers”

September 25, 2012

Today we remember one of the Province’s own soldiers, U.S. Army Chaplain Fr. Leo Craig, O.P. On this day in 1951 his remains were brought back to New York City from Korea. His funeral mass was celebrated in the Dominican rite at the Church of Saint Vincent Ferrer. Fr. Leo died while serving the men of the 1st Cavalry Division.  For the record, this is the same Army division which later fought in Vietnam and on which  the movie “We Were Soldiers” was based. Here is the story behind this photograph: Fr. Leo is administering Last Rites to a soldier that stepped on a land mine left by the retreating North Korean forces. After taking the shot, the photographer ran out of film and went back to retrieve more. Thirty seconds after the “click” of his camera’s shutter, there was another detonation as one of the soldiers next to Fr. Leo stepped on a booby-trapped mine. It was wired to TNT explosives and the blast killed Fr. Leo and seven other men. Currently Fr. Ed Gorman, O.P. of the Province is serving as a U.S. Military Chaplain.  He deployed several times with the Marines in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Please pray for him and his fellow chaplains that they will continue to provide for the spiritual needs of the soldiers, sailors, and marines defending our nation.  

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