The Soldier's Details

Surname:
Struthoff
First Name:
Albert John
Nick Name:
Bert
Rank:
Private
Regimental #:
WX15869
Company:
‘C’ Company Headquarters
Enlisted:
18.08.1941
DOB:
10.02.1914
Place of Birth:
Kojonup, Western Australia
Father's Name:
John Struthoff
Mothers's Name:
Ellen Struthoff (nee Bullen)
Religion:
Methodist
Pre-war Occupation:
Farmhand
Memorial:
Kranji War Cemetery, Plot 26, Row C, Grave 1, Age 30.
Singapore:
Selarang Camp Changi, returned to River Valley Road Transit camp from Saigon, to await Rakuyo Maru.
Force:
‘A’ Force Burma, Green Force, No. 3 Battalion
Camps Thailand:
Tamarkan.
Camps Burma:
Victoria Point, Kendau, Thetkaw, Meiloe, Aungganaung,
POW#:
1516 & 1657
Japan:
Rakuyo Maru Party, Saigon
Cause of Death:
Pneumonia
Place of Death:
Tan Son Nhut, French Indo-China
Date of Death:
19.09.1944
Buried:
Chi Hoa Cemetery, Saigon.

General Description

Bert Struthoff enlisted AIF 18 Aug 1941 and was Taken on Strength to Woodside SA to join 2/4th’s ‘C’ Company HQ under Commanding Officer Colin Cameron.

He left Singapore with the first work Party – ‘A’ Force Burma Green Force No. 3 Battalion to work on the Burma end of the Railway.

Please read further about ‘A’ Force Burma

 

AWM: TAN SON NHUT, NEAR SAIGON, VIETNAM, 1954-03-06. GRAVE OF WX15869, PTE A.J. STRUTHOFF, 2/4TH  MGB , THE BRITISH WAR CEMETERY. PTE STRUTHOFF DIED ON 1944-09-19 WHILST A POW. HIS REMAINS HAVE SINCE BEEN EXHUMED AND INTERRED IN PLOT 26, ROW C, GRAVE1, KRANJI WAR CEMETERY, SINGAPORE.

 

A J Struthoff WXl5869

Albert John Strutthoff, Kranji War Cemetery,

Plot 26, Row C, Grave 1.

The Railway was completed during late 1943 and the Japanese began moving all the POWs working in the Burma end of the rail to Thailand to one of the larger camps.  This is where Bert was included with the work party to go to Japan – to become known as ‘Rakuyo’ Maru.   Tragically the ‘Rakuyo’ Maru was sunk by American submarines 12 Sept 1944, resulting in the deaths of most on board including 38 men from 2/4th.  (Miraculously some survived to be rescued by the Americans and 3 by Japanese Navy.). You can read about ‘Rakuyo’ Maru

Bert was ill on 23 June 1944 and remained behind when the Party departed Saigon for Singapore.  He died 19 September 1944 of pneumonia and dysentery in a rest room aged 30 years.

Others from 2/4th to remain behind due to illness was James Howe and Bryan Manwaring.

 

WX15869 Bert Struthoff
WX15869 Bert Struthoff

 

Struthoff

Struthoff mother

Version 7

 

 

Below:  probably shipping arrival of Struthoff family 1912.

 

Below:  Johann Struthoff’s employment with WAGR

 

Whilst residing at Muradup (near Kojonup)  in 1916 and 1917 Electoral Rolls, Johann is fettler, Muradup.  Struthoff’s first wife Janet (nee Fry) died 1910, probably in SA,  she was  mother to Keith and Meta.

The Struthoff family arrived in WA about 1912.  Keith and Meta resided at Muradup with their father. (It is possible there were further siblings).

Albert John Struthoff was born Kojonup 1914 – his mother was Ellen Struthoff.

Below:  believed to be children from Struthoff’s first marriage, Meta and Keith.

 

 

Below:  Johann participated in local interests.

 

German born Johann Struthoff married Ellen Bullen in 1921.

1925 Electoral Roll show Johann and Ellen living Muradup, he is fettler – moving to Greenbushes.

In 1931 they were residing Kalamunda and in 1943 were at Morley Park where Johann was labourer.

Albert ‘Bert’ Struthoff was living Roleystone 1936, 1937.  When he enlisted he gave his parents address, Morley Park.

Johann Struthoff  born Germany 14 July 1881, and died Claremont,  died 1957.    Ellen Struthoff died January 1964 at Victoria Park aged 84 years.

 

News received by Struthoff family 1943 about Bert and another mate Bob Ritchie, and Keith McDonald from 2/4th.
The three men are connected through living in the Kojonup area at one time or another.

 

 

 

 

 

Camp Locations:

  • River Valley Road Camp - Singapore
  • Selarang Camp Changi - Singapore
  • Aungganaung,105Kilo - Burma
  • Kendau, Kandaw, 4 Kilo - Burma
  • Meilo, 75 Kilo, 340k - Burma
  • Saigon - French Indo China
  • Victoria Point, Kawthoung - Burma. \'A\' Force, Green Force No. 3 Btn
  • Thetkaw 14 Kilo - Burma
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