to perpetuate the memory and history of our dead

9.18 Final resting places

Of the 573 deceased 131st FA members (regardless of POW status), the largest number (358 – 62%) are buried in Texas. Of those, 30 are at the Nat’l Cem on Ft Sam Houston TX. Eighteen of those who died while working the TBR are buried in the cemetery known as the Punch Bowl in Hawaii. Other concentrations of 131st members are to be found in Wichita Falls (13), Lubbock (11) and Abilene (10). Another 14 were Lost at Sea when their Hellship was sunk. The exact burial place of 46 (8%) is undetermined. Many of these were likely cremated and their interment undocumented.

Since the USS Houston crewmen were a more diverse group in terms of their places of birth, we found 44 (12%) buried in CALIF; 35 (10%) in TEXAS and 13 (4%) of the TBR dead interred at The Punch Bowl. Three were Buried at Sea to join their ship mates. The exact burial place of 63 (18%) is undetermined. One has to wonder why so many of the TBR dead were not re-patriated to their families and were sent to the Hawaii Nat’l Cemetery.

Except for those lost at sea, only two sets of remains were not recovered: LT(jg) Weiler and LT Russell Ross who died of dysentery in the Batavia Bicycle Camp.

 As for the other Allied dead:

Kanchanaburi CWGC Cemetery contains the graves of 6,982 personnel comprising:

  • 3,585 British
  • 1,896 Dutch
  • 1,362 Australians
  •       12 members of the Indian Army (including British officers)
  •         2 New Zealanders
  •         2 Danes
  •         8 Canadians

A memorial at the Kanchanaburi cemetery lists 11 other members of the Indian Army, who are buried in nearby Muslim cemeteries. There is also a plaque listing the names of Dutch POWs whose remains were never recovered.

Chungkai CWGC Cemetery, near Kanchanaburi, has a further 1,693 war graves.

  • 1,373 British
  •    314 Dutch
  •        6 Indian Army

Thanbyuzayat  CWGC Cemetery, Burma has the graves of 3,617 POWs who died on the Burmese portion of the line.

  • 1,651 British
  • 1,335 Australians
  •    621 Dutch
  •    15 Indian Army
  •      3 New Zealanders

     1 Canadian

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