Sergeant Reckless: The Korean War Horse

Gunnery Sgt Joe Latham with Reckless Credit: provided by Robin Hutton
Gunnery Sgt Joe Latham with Reckless carrying munitions. Credit: provided by Robin Hutton

The popularity of War Horse has really increased the visibility of the war horse in battle and brought to public attention the stories of some of the horses that touched a lot of soldiers’ hearts. Here’s the story of Reckless, a Mongolian bred mare who was bought by a marine gun crew with their own money and trained her to carry shells for the recoil-less rifle they called “reckless”.

The mare, whom they also name Reckless, becomes their mascot and an indispensable member of their gun crew. She made countless trips, often under heavy fire, from the ammunition supply point to the gun — often alone.


In recognition of her contribution, the Marines presented her with a special citation for bravery, “promoted” her to Sergeant and personally pay her way back to the United States. She enjoyed a well-earned retirement pastured at Camp Pendleton.

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