Malcolm Brodie Edens
Air Force, Major
18th Fighter Bomber Wing attached to the 6132nd ACW Squadron, 502nd Tactical Control Group as a Forward Air Controller.
Distinguished Flying Cross, Bronze Star, Air Medal with 8 Oak Leaf Clusters, Purple Heart, Prisoner of War Medal, Korean Service Medal, United Nations Service Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Korean Presidential Unit Citation, Republic of Korea War Service Medal
Jan 17, 1919
Mar 31, 1954
Hostile Action, Died While Missing (MIA) - On October 16, 1961, the Department of the Air Force issued a Missing in Action-Korea manual pertaining to each of the 187 Air Force personnel of the Korean conflict still “Unaccounted For.” Captured on November 30, 1950, Capt. Malcolm B. Edens’ whereabouts remained unknown at the date of this publication. The subsequent sighting reports are recollections of encounters with Capt. Edens following his capture.
Memorialized at the Oolenoy Baptist Church Cemetery, Pumpkintown, SC. Also memorialized at the Courts of the Missing, National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, Honolulu, HI.
Edens attended Presbyterian College in 1938, then transferred to Clemson for the 1939 and 1940 school years. He entered the service and returned to Clemson after the war to complete his degree.
Lt. Col Gerald Brown, USAF, 9625A, a repatriate, stated that immediately after his capture on November 30, 1950 he met Capt. Edens in a group of houses near Takchon and was quartered with him for two days in a corn crib. According to Brown, Edens was captured on November 30, 1950, but had been in hiding since November 26. His hands and feet were frozen but no medical care was furnished. He had been without food or water since November 26th and was required to walk about 15 miles in cold and snow with frozen feet and hands. Brown also said that WO Smith, Infantry, told him that Edens had died in February 1951 near Kunry, Korea, from gangrene and malnutrition.
Capt. William C. McTaggart, Jr., USAF, AO 2065317, 98th Bomb Group, advised that he had been told by a Lt J. Breton, U.S. Army, that Eden had died from exposure on December 22, 1950.
Lt. Col Robert N. Abbott, O 1285369, USAF, a repatriate, stated that he saw Edens in the vicinity of Kachon near Kunry. He had a severe case of frostbite in both feet and could not walk.
Major Roy M. Gamling, USA, said that he last saw Edens on December 10 or 11, 1950. At that time, Edens was in excruciating pain; his feet were almost completely numb, and there were red streaks up his legs to his knees. Gamling did not believe Edens could live much longer and there were rumors later that he had died.
Awards / Citations: His name is inscribed on the Courts of the Missing at the Honolulu Memorial. For his leadership and valor, Major Edens was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Bronze Star, the Air Medal with 8 Oak Leaf Clusters and the Purple Heart, the Prisoner of War Medal, the Korean Service Medal, the United Nations Service Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Korean Presidential Unit Citation and the Republic of Korea War Service Medal,
Citation Prisoner of War Medal: Major Malcolm Brodie Edens (AFSN: AO-0789892), United States Air Force, was held as a Prisoner of War after he was captured on 28 November 1950 during the Korean War. He was unaccounted for after the war and is presumed to have died or been killed while in captivity.
General Orders: Defense Prisoner of War/Missing Personnel Office
Action Date: November 28, 1950 – MIA In Captivity
Personal remembrances and tributes:
“In 1951, a recently captured U.S. officer came into my POW camp in North Korea asking if anyone was from Clemson. He then told me he had been with Captain Malcomb Edens from Sumter, who was seriously wounded prior to his capture and died on the march north. This officer, whose name I can’t remember, told me he removed Captain Edens’ 1947 Clemson College class ring from his finger with the intention of returning it to someone from Clemson.
The captured officer told me he was familiar with “The Clemson Tradition” and knew that Malcomb’s family or Clemson College would treasure the ring. With sincere apologies, this POW officer explained that a Communist soldier had confiscated the ring, and it was probably lost forever somewhere in North Korea or China.”
– William H. Funchess. Class of 1948, was a POW from November 4, 1950 to September 6, 1953 and now lives in Clemson. He is the author of a book, Korea P.O.W. – A Thousand Days of Torment