June 16, 1925 (Norwalk CT) – April 17, 1945; 19 years old
Last local address: 197 East Avenue, Norwalk
Enlisted July 1943
Service number: 31336674
Unit: Americal Division, 182nd Infantry Regiment, Company C
Born to Charles F. Kuch Jr. (1888-1967) and Marguerite Young Kuch (1890-1930). Sister, Ruth M. Kuch Tvedt Jones (1924-2014).
Charles was killed in action on Cebu Island, Philippines.
From The Norwalk Hour October 23, 1944
PFC CHARLES F. KUCH KILLS SEVERAL NIPS; SAYS THEY ARE PLENTY TOUGH GUYS
With the Americal Division somewhere in the Southwest Pacific – In the recent bitter fighting for Nip Gap, on this jungle island, PFC Charles Frederick Kuch, first scout of a rifle squad in a veteran fighting regiment, distinguished himself as the first man to reach the top of the key hill where the main body of Japs was entrenched. Kuch is from Norwalk, Connecticut. In the 30 minutes following Kuch’s arrival at the top of the hill more than 30 Japs were annihilated at the cost of one man. Though Kuch cannot, as most of the men, actually claim to any certain number of Japs, he undoubtedly killed several during the brief engagement. Said the 19-year-old rifleman, “I wouldn’t say the Japs were so anxious to die. They impressed me as being hard to kill. My sergeant emptied a whole clip into one and it didn’t kill him. I saw a barman fire nearly all of his 20-round clip into a running Jap at point-blank range to stop him. They’re plenty tough guys.”
From The Norwalk Hour April 16, 1945
Charles F. Kuch, 3rd, son of Charles F. Kuch of 197 East Avenue, stationed in the Pacific area, has been promoted from Private First Class to Sergeant in accordance with the recent commendation of Colonel Floyd E. Dunn, Commanding Officer of the 182nd Infantry. The commendation for outstanding service reads:
Private First Class Charles F. Kuch III, for meritorious service in connection with military operations against the enemy at Bougainville, Solomon Islands, on 1 October 1944. During an attack on enemy positions at the Laruna Road Block, Private First Class Kuch displayed great courage and devotion to duty when he moved forward to act as a scout for the attacking forces. Private Kuch led the attack up a hill under intense enemy fire from hidden positions and guided the attacking forces into the enemy defenses. This action was instrumental in the successful completion of the attack against the enemy. His action throughout the engagement was courageous and meritorious. This devotion to duty on the part of Private First Class Kuch in the face of enemy fire reflects great courage upon himself and is in keeping with the highest standards and traditions of our Army.
Sgt Kuch who is 19 years old, has been overseas for 15 months. Before the war, he attended Norwalk High School where he actively participated in pole vaulting and basketball.
From The Norwalk Hour May 5, 1945
Sergeant Charles Frederick Kuch III, died of wounds on the Island of Cebu on April 17, according to word received today from the War Department by his father, Charles F. Kuch of 197 East Avenue. Sergeant Kuch was only recently promoted from private, receiving a commendation for meritorious service on Bougainville in the Pacific. He was 19 years old and had been overseas for 16 months. He attended Norwalk High School where he was active in athletics.
From The Norwalk Hour September 15, 1948
Funeral services for Sergeant Charles F. Kuch III, who died overseas, were held this morning at 8:30 from the Collins Funeral Home, 92 East Avenue, Norwalk, and at 9 o’clock at St. Thomas the Apostle Church, where a requiem mass was said by Reverend Francis E. Fenton. The bearers were: John W. Arena, Chester Carney, Edwin Clark and Louis Acunzo, all members of the American Legion. The firing squad, in the charge of Sergeant Gene Sansilo, were Corporal Kenneth Porter, Corporal Joseph Veno, Tec5 Jamen Ellis, PFC Conrad Miller, PFC Harry Czako, Private Joseph V. Merrone, and the bugler was PFC Donald Wright, all members of the National Guard. Burial was in the family plot in Riverside Cemetery.
Staff Sergeant Kuch is buried in Riverside Cemetery, 81 Riverside Avenue, Norwalk, Connecticut; Section 18, Plot 16A. Photo by webmaster.