Posted by: Bob Ringma | April 1, 2011


War is usually portrayed in the popular media as the firing of weapons and the movement of troops, ships and aircraft.  Occasionally, a movie such as M*A*S*H will show another side of war such as the medical.   But we don’t often hear about the logistical operations:  the furnishing of food, water, supplies, and laundry and bath facilities.

As a junior officer in the Canadian Army during the Korean war, I was assigned to the Mobile Laundry and Bath Unit — the MLBU.  It was my responsibility to move laundry and bath equipment with personnel to locations near the front where there was some form of running water, so we could provide the troops with the luxury of a shower and clean clothing.  The process of locating these sites was in itself an adventure.

The goal of this blog is to supplement my 2004 memoir M*L*B*U Full Monty in Korea with more stories about Canada’s MLBU during the Korean War.



  1. Hi Bob,
    Like you I came from Pusan North to 191 Inf Wksp and one of the first sights that got my attention were a gp of MLBU vehicles that got drowned in the quick rise of the Imjin River a few weeks earlier. I’m not sure we ever got them back fully serviceable. Korea for me was a real learning period, not only of my job as an EME offcer but the value of the NCO,s and WO,s and their smarts. Years later as a Career Manager at NDHQ. I tried to emplant that respect in other young EME offrs who felt they knew everything. How wrong they were.
    That was good reading and brought back memories.
    Cheers Fred

    • The vehicles were drowned in a flash flood in a river other than the Imjin. You are correct in wondering about their repair. Thanks to the fact that we had two RCEME tradesmen on our establishment, a Corporal fitter and a Craftsman electrician, we finally repaired the laundry trailer, ourselves. Look for more details about the flood in a future blog.

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