Paul F. Horiuchi (1944/10/19)
"Go For Broke" designated his unit and defined the intensity of Paul's service.
Paul Fumio Horiuchi was born in Walnut Grove, California, on January 25, 1922, the son of Takeji and Haru Horiuchi. Brothers Tom, Joe, Bill, Ben and Masaru joined Paul in rounding out the family. The Horiuchi family later moved to the Pajaro Valley and resided there until 1940. While in Watsonville, Paul attended Watsonville High School, where he was active on its football and basketball teams and was a member of the nature club. After graduating from high school in 1940, he moved to the Salinas Valley and worked as a pressman for Nichi-Bei, a Japanese language newspaper. Horiuchi was residing in Salinas in the spring of 1942, when Japanese-Americans were moved to the relocation camp at Poston, Arizona.
During a leave from the camp, Horiuchi volunteered for military service and entered the US Army at Salt Lake City, Utah, on December 5, 1943. He was sent to Camp Shelby, Mississippi, for basic training and became a member of Company E, 2nd Battalion, 442nd Regimental Combat Team of the 100th Infantry Division.
Paul Horiuchi and his company boarded troop ships for Italy on May 1, 1944, and arrived at Naples on June 2. He participated in the fall of Rome and pursued retreating Germans up the boot of Italy to Livorno, which was captured in July 1944.
In the fall of 1944, the 442nd was transported to Marseilles, France, and began driving the Germans out of the Rhone Valley. Key to their objective was the recapture of the French town of Bruyeres. The official report of that mission describes Private First Class Paul (Fumio) Horiuchi's last battle.
“19 October - The battalions reorganized and attacked again at 1300 with the objective of reaching the railroad embankment 2000 yards East of Bruyeres on the edge of the Forět de Belmont. CO's E and G from the 2nd Bn and CO's I and K from the 3rd Bn made the push. Enemy troops dug in behind the embankment held up the advance at 1600, and SP guns from the vicinity of Belmont shelled the forward companies.”
Paul Horiuchi was killed in action during this encounter. His remains were later recovered and returned to the United States for reburial in the Golden Gate National Cemetery in San Bruno on January 31, 1949. His awards include the Purple Heart, Bronze Star and Combat Infantryman's Badge.
(NARA2; USDVA; WRP November 11, 1944 1:1; Americans of Japanese Ancestry, WW II Memorial, http://www.ajawarvets.org/ campaigns/campaign_06_bruyeres.htm, [16 September 2008])