32nd INFANTRY DIVISION - Red Arrow
Activated 15 Oct 1940 • Entered Combat 16 Jul 1942 • Days of Combat 654 • Casualties 7,268
Maj. Gen. Irving Fish (Oct 40 - Mar 42)
Maj. Gen. Edwin F. Harding (Mar 42 - Jan 43)
Maj. Gen. William H. Gill (Feb 43 - inactivation)
The 32d Infantry Division arrived in Australia 14 May 1942. The first element of the division to enter the combat zone by air for Port Moresby 16 September to be joined by other elements arriving by sea 28 September and by air 2 October. Units of the 32d were deployed defensively along the Goldie River on the left flank of the Australian garrison force for the Port Moresby area. Fighting along the Goldie River to protect the Australian left flank, the 32d drove the enemy back along the Kokoda Trail and stopped the enemy threat to Port Moresby. Elements were flown to the Buna area where they were joined, 15 November 1942, by the 2d Bn. of the 126th Infantry which had trekked over the Owen Stanley Mountains. The difficult struggle for Buna-Sanananda was completed, 22 January 1943, and the 32d returned to Australia for rest and training. On 2 January 1944, elements landed at Saidor, and helped to end enemy resistance, 14 April 1944. On 23 April, elements took part in the landing at Aitape, the Division arriving on 3 May. After meeting slight initial resistance, the 32d had to withstand savage counterattacks in the Drinumor River area. By 31 August Aitape was secured and the Division rested. Elements landed on Morotai on 15 September. The 32d CP opened at Hollandia, 1 October to stage for the Philippines. It landed on Leyte, 14 November, and went into action along the Pinamopoan-Ormoc highway, taking Limon and smashing the Yamashita line by bitter hand-to-hand combat. Union with elements of 1st Cavalry Division in the vicinity of Lonoy, 22 December, marked the collapse of enemy resistance in the upper Ormoc Valley. From Leyte the Division moved to Lingayen Gulf, Luzon, 27 January 1945. It pushed up the Villa Verde Trail, 30 January, and after more than 100 days of fighting took Imugan and met the 25th Infantry Division near Santa Fe, 28 May, securing Balete Pass, the gateway to the Cagayan Valley. While elements continued mopping-up activities near Imugan, other units moved to rest and rehabilitation centers. Active elements secured the Baguio area, wiped out enemy groups in the Agno River Valley area, and opened Highway 11 as a supply route. Operations ceased on 15 August 1945 and the Division moved to Japan for occupation duty 20 October.
Date Activated is the date the division was activated or inducted into federal service (national guard units).
Casualties are number of killed, wounded in action, captured, and missing.
The dates after the campaign name are the dates of the campaign not of the division.
The Army Almanac: A Book of Facts Concerning the Army of the United States; , U.S. Government Printing Office. Army Battle Casualties and Nonbattle Deaths in World War II, Final Report, 1 December 1941 - 31 December 1946. US Army Center of Military History at http://www.history.army.mil/ Various divisional histories