The 177th USASA Operations Co. was created in July, 1957 as part of a world-wide force reduction that required the Army Security Agency to inactivate numerous Table of Organization and Equipment (TOE) units and replace them with temporary Table of Distribution and Allowance (TDA) units. The 501st ASA Group, and all its subordinate units, that had served in the Korean war and in Korea until 1957, were TOE units. When 501st Group was inactivated in July of 1957, so were most of the TOE units subordinate to it. They were simultaneously replaced by newly-created TDA units, such as the 177th USASA Operations Company, which replaced the 330th ASA Operations Company.
At that time (mid 1957) the 330th ASA Operations Company was headquartered in its own compound in a place called Mia-ri. The location was alongside the Main Supply Route (MSR), or in other words "the road" between Seoul and Uijongbu. It was just south of the Uijongbu checkpoint. At that time, Mia-ri was just at the northern edge of Seoul. Today the place is called Mia-dong and is about five miles inside the Seoul city limits.
While the unit designation "officially" was changed from 330th Co to 177th Co. there was a lot of foot dragging by those in charge in acknowledging the name change. The photos below were reported to have been taken in late 1957 or early 1958, but the unit designation on the sign is still 330th ASA Company. This apparently did get changed soon afterwards, however, as most men who were there in the 1958-59 period have reported it was the 177th at that time.
They moved in 1960 to K6 (later Camp Humphries) near Pyung-tek (close to Osan AF Base). The 226th ran ELINT and COMINT operations. The 177th had a mix, including intercept, DF and a CRITICOM relay station, with all the morse intercept occurring there.
I worked in the Comm Center. I remember that the Comm Center was in two Vans side by side. The heaters didn't work in the Vans, but the Air Conditioners did work. We had a small heater that I would put my feet on the get them warm.
At Christmas time they broke the company into two shifts one to work Christmas and one to work New Years. I had to work over Christmas. I remember that some of the guys really partied. Someone fell into a Benjo Ditch (not sure of the spelling) outside of a bar, head first when they pull him out he said it tested good. I do believe they had to burn his clothes. If anyone remembers more I would like to hear it.
During my break a couple of us went into Soul, we rode the train as it had just started running since the war. I still remember how bad things were in Soul. We came across a few your girls maybe 10 to 15 years old with their hand out asking for a quarter for them to take us into their one room shack. New Years eve I spent at a couple of places, the last place I can remember being was the UN Center, it was a new building. I don't remember leaving but when I woke up the next day I was with a waitress from the UN Center at her home.
I can remember how cold it was there. If you hung a towel up in the Quonset huts, it would swing back and forte just like it was out side. I put my newspapers from home on the walls to try and keep the wind out.
The foot of my bed was about a foot from the diesel stove and one night with blankets and a sleeping bag, I woke up in the middle of the night from the cold, thinking someone had forget to put fuel in the stove, so I started getting up to add fuel and seen the stove was cherry red.
On 15 Jan 61, I was on Emergency Leave orders as my father was seriously ill. So the night of Jan 15 the First Sgt (wish I could remember his name) put me in a jeep and drove me to 508th USASA GP, picked up some money at finance and then he drove me to Kimpo Air Base, where I fly back to the states to Travis Air Force Base in California.