When I was very young, I believe I was 2 or 3 years old, my father was called up for another tour of duty during the Korean War with the United States. He was a surgeon on a Navy ship called the Repose. When he had days off, he would take a tender to Incheon. On one trip to Incheon, he passed the Star of the Sea Orphanage and stopped to smile at the children playing outside - reminding him of his daughter back home in Cleveland, Ohio USA. Sister Philamena (spelling??) noticed his medical insignia and "asked" (more like cajoled) my father into volunteering to help - many of the Korean women/American soldier relationships resulted in abandoned babies. Many of the babies were dehydrated and unnourished. Although my dad was a surgeon, he had enough basic pediatrics as a medical student that he could treat the babies - he would sneak IV fluids and medication from the ship to the Star of the Sea . . . he pursuaded the supply officers to order more than the needed so American soldiers had what they needed, but if his "smuggling" would have been identified, he could have been court marshaled, tried, and jailed!
He told me what a joy it was for him to play with the kids when he was so far from home. He involved other doctors from the hospital ship also. I remember photographs of playing Santa Claus and delivering simple gifts at Christmas.
When I was older and my Dad was home to stay, I would go to our church to help him pack donated clothing, medical supplies, and canned foods that were shipped to Sister Philamena. She sent my Dad the gift of a beatiful embroidery on kittens in a basket, stitched on silk . . . he treasured that gift until he died.
I remember his stories about the Sisters including the habit of Sister Philamena offering Dad a shot of Irish whiskey that she kept "for medicinal purposes."
I wanted to tell you about the heritage of the Star of the Sea from another perspective - its a very precious memory of my father.
Have you received other information about Star of the Sea in the 1950's?