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    Buna Station (Buna Mission) Oro Province Papua New Guinea (PNG)
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December 7, 1942

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Justin Taylan 2005

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Justin Taylan 2005

Location
Lat 8° 40' 0S Long 148° 24' 0E  Buna Station (Buna Mission) is located on the north coast of New Guinea at Buna. Prewar, this location was developed into the Buna Government Station and Buna Mission, an Anglican mission station. Also known as Buna Station, Buna Government Station and Buna Mission. Nearby was the Government Gardens, growing crops to support the station.

Wartime History
On July 21, 1942 at 2:40pm, a Japanese float plane strafed Buna station. Account by Allan Champion, Resident Magistrate. During "Operation RI", a Japanese convoy arrived off Gona and began landing troops that advanced inland and occupied the Buna area.

Battle of Buna
On November 19, 1942 the US Army, 32nd Division attacked the from both flanks the area encompassing Buna to Cape Endaiadere, but were quickly pinned down by the formidable and well hidden Japanese defenses. Brutal fighting ensued for the month of November. Under General Eichelberger, the troops made some gains on the left flank and captured the government gardens and had isolated Buna Mission from Giropa Point.

On January 1, 1943 at 8:00am, two Australian battalions, the 2/10th and the 2/12th with six Stuart tanks and two American battalions continued the attack on the Japanese positions east of Giropa Point. The tanks, working with precision, rolled close to the enemy's bunkers and lashed them with fire while the infantry rushed forward and hurled charge that finally began to overcome enemy strong points. At the end of the long day, few Japanese posts east of Giropa Point still remained, and were each eliminated. On January 2, 1943 Buna was captured by American troops.

Today
Buna was destroyed during the battle. Only the concrete foundation of the government station remains today. Slightly inland, are some huts and a Medical Center and memorials. The village area has tracks from tanks or vehicles, and rusted ammunition boxes from the battle on display. Also, several memorials near the beach. Also, the wing and tail section of G6M1-L2 Betty 209 is on display.

Buna Australian Memorial
Memorial pillar with inscriptions on each side.

Side 1: reads in English and Tok Pidgin: "Australia Remembers - This medical center and memorial are for the people of Buna and Sanananda in appreciation of the support and help given to Australian servicemen who fought and died here in November 1942 - January 1943, this plaque is based on the photograph taken in this area on 24th December 1942. May this friendship be everlasting."

Side 2: is a history of the battles for Buna and Sanananda.

Side 3: reads in English and Tok Pidgin: "In memory of the Australian servicemen and the Papua New Guineans who lost their lives in the common cause during the battles for Buna and Sanananda from November 1942 to January 1943."

Side 4: A roll of honor, listing all the Australian units that participated in the battle.

Buna Battlefield Bronze Plaque
Bronze plaque on a concrete square placed on the ground in the center of Buna village. Inscribed in both English and Tok pidgin, dedicated in 1994. Read plaque inscription.

SSgt Herman J. Bottcher Memorial
Lat 08 40.172 S Long 148 24.602 E  Located at the entrance to Buna village. This American memorial marker stands about 2m tall, and has a brass plaque with inscription.

Buna 32nd Division Memorial
In memory of our fallen buddies, brass plaque with inscription

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Last Updated
April 6, 2018

 

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Dec 1942

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