|Pvt. William Kuffner fought with the 358th Infantry Regiment in house to house fighting in Hof, Germany.|
William A. Kuffner never had a chance to reach 100 years old today. Instead, he sacrificed his life for our freedom.
He was born on July 5, 1918 in Montana. His parents William and Katherine were both born in Croatia and came to America in 1904 and 1907, respectively. His father worked as a grocery store teamster and later as a gold miner. William had one older brother, two older sisters, a younger sister, and a younger brother. He married his wife Esther and they had a boy and a girl.
He was drafted into the army on June 17, 1944. After basic training he was sent to the army replacement pool in France on December 30, 1944 and was assigned as a private to the 358th Infantry Regiment, 90th Infantry Division. The 90th ID would suffer more than 19,000 casualties from D-Day on Utah Beach to the end of the war fighting in Germany. Pvt. Kuffner joined his unit to replace men lost in the Battle of the Bulge.
The 358th IR was deep into Germany by mid April 1945. It attacked the industrial town of Hof on April 15 and engaged in vicious house-to-house fighting with snipers on every block. Pvt. Kuffner was killed the next day.
His grave is at Mount Olivet Cemetery, Anaconda, Montana. His widow remarried in 1949. I don't know what happened after that to her or their two children.
Last year on this date I profiled Dauntless bomber pilot Clarence Twiddy. You can read about Clarence here.
On behalf of the fallen, if you would like to see more people become aware of this project to honor the WW2 fallen, be sure to share with others on Twitter, Facebook, etc. Thanks for your interest!
I created this video to explain why I started this project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXt8QA481lY.
Please consider joining the public Facebook group to increase the exposure of this project. Go to: WW2 Fallen 100