Lawrence (Barney) Walter Ward Kirchhoff

Staff Sergeant Lawrence W. Kirchhoff, 1023 Emery Street, Eau Claire, recently returned to this country, after having served 20 months overseas in the Asiatic-Pacific Theater, reported to the Army Ground and Service Forces Redistribution Station in Hot Springs, AR on September 7.

Sergeant Kirchhoff, son of Dick E. Kirchhoff, Route 3, Eau Claire, was employed in civilian life by the Eau Claire Cafe, Barstow Street, as a cook. During his services overseas, he saw action in New Guinea. Prior to his reporting in at the Army Redistribution Station at Hot Springs, AR, Lawrence spent some time on furlough in this city.

Veteran of Buna Campaign Home; Left With Co. B
Staff Sergeant Lawrence Kirchhoff, a veteran of the New Guinea Campaign from Port Moresby to Buna, during which the Japs were turned back in their drive on Australia, is spending a Christmas furlough at home, his first visit home in two and a half years. His parents are Mr. and Mrs. Dick Kirchhoff, Route 3. 

Staff Sergeant Kirchhoff was a member of Company B when it was mustered into federal service in 1940, and he went to Australia with the company when the 32nd Division was sent overseas shortly after the Jap attack at Pearl Harbor. 

He was returned to the United States recently, leaving Australia on a transport November 5, because of recurring attacks of malaria. 

After a stop at a hospital in San Francisco, he was sent to an Army hospital at Memphis, Tennessee; and then given a furlough. He will return to the Memphis hospital January 3 for six months of treatment for malaria. 

Staff Sergeant Kirchhoff was one of the few Company B men who fought throughout the New Guinea Campaign, climaxing with the capture of Gona and Buna and the expulsion of Japs from the Papuan Peninsula, without a wound or injury. 

After the campaign, the company was returned to Australia, where it was reorganized and brought back to full strength. It is believed again engaged in Pacific action, but no announcement has been made of its present location. 

New Guinea was tough territory to negotiate, even without Jap opposition, Staff Sergeant Kirchhoff said. It was two and a half months after the company was landed by air transports at Port Moresby, before they penetrated far enough through mountains and jungles to engage the Japs, the Sergeant said, adding: "We were all tired out by the time we started to fight." 

Their most trying days, he said, were when their supply ships were sunk by the Japs, and it was some time before other shipments arrived.

Staff Sergeant Kirchhoff took moving pictures of the Buna Campaign, but the films were retained by censors at Sidney. They promised to send them, after the war.