M-37

(Working on the M37 page.)

 

How long have they been around?

Recently a poster on one of the Forums was surprised when an individual walked up and told the poster that he had driven a M37 in Korea.  Because many folks do not have a handle on the time line about Korea, here's some information to put it into perspective. 

The Korean "Police Action" lasted from June 1950 to July 1953. Major US Army units were sent to Korea to augment US and UN troops already there. Most US Army units were still equipped with WWII weapons and equipment and many Korean veterans would have seen WC51's and not M37's.

 

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LATE SERIES WC52

EARLY SERIES WC51 or 52


I would not be surprised by someone who told me he drove an M37 in Korea. M37's got into the supply system in significant numbers in 1952 and started arriving in Korea a while before the truce agreement. The US Army has been there up to the present and used the M37 in great numbers during all the years they were in the inventory. I am one of hundreds who drove an M37 in Korea. I am a veteran of service in Korea, but I am not a veteran of the "Police Action". A current veteran of the "Police Action" would have been born before 1935. M37's were phased out of the inventory in the late sixties. Assuming a phase-out date of 1968 - five years before the "draft" ended - there were many soldiers who might have driven a M37 in Korea and born as late as 1950.

M37's were a mainstay of the Cold War. Typically, one was assigned assigned to each Company or Battalion clerk who used them as a mail truck. One was assigned to every Supply Sergeant and it was the vehicle of choice when going to the "country store". They were a prime mover for artillery in Europe. Because the Viet Nam thing was an "advisory" action and was not a declared war, we can include it as part of the Cold War and remember that many M37's were converted into gun trucks.

I had a nearly new M37B1w/w when I was assigned to a unit at Camp Casey, Korea, about 8 miles south of the 38th Parallel. I arrived in November 1963 and had a ball driving in deep snow with chains on all four wheels. I was also assigned a first series Ford M151. I enjoyed them both equally. Being in civilian clothes status, I had great freedom in learning the capabilities and limitation of these two fantastic vehicles.

On my next tour in Korea in 1970, I was disappointed to have a Kaiser-Jeep M715 instead of a M37. I still had a M151 for fun, but my #2 fun truck turned out to be a M35. Again, being on civilian clothes status let me enjoy the capabilities of those two fun trucks. I still had to use the M715 for certain work missions but it was never fun.