Oconto & Washington DC—
The navy department announced Saturday that the 1270 ton gunboat Asheville was presumed lost in enemy action south of Java. Her commander was Capt. Kenneth Mortimer Hoeffel, 48, who was born in Oconto, Wis. And was at one time a resident of Green Bay.
No word has been received of the personnel of the ship, the navy said, all must be presumed lost. Navy records show that Capt. Hoeffel, who was graduated from the naval academy in 1917 and served in the first World war, was ordered to Pearl Harbor in June, 1938. On Dec. 19, 1940, he was given command of the Asheville, with additional duties as commander of the inshore patrol.
Capt. Hoeffel was the son of Mr. and Mrs. I. S. Sylvester Hoeffel of Oconto. In 1932 he married Miss Mary Polk Drake of Miami, Fla. And Lenox, Mass. She was a great granddaughter of Gov. Polk of Mississippi, judge advocate of the Confederacy, and a cousin of President James K. Polk.
Mrs. Hoeffel’s residence is listed as Cambridge, Mass.
The Navy did not announce the number of the personnel of the Asheville, but Janes Fighting Ships lists her normal complement as 185 officers and men. USS Asheville was launched July 4, 1918. She had a length of 241 feet and a beam of 41 feet. Her designed speed was 12 knots.
A report Friday that Captian Kenneth M. Hoeffel, United States Nave officer and former Green Bay and Oconto resident, was missing in action while on duty with the fleet was denied late last night, according to advice reaching his cousins, L. H. Joannes, De Pere, and Mrs. H.A. Macpherson of S. Monroe Ave.
The Captain’s brother, Dr. Paul Hoeffel, Evanston,
Ill., was notified Thursday by the Navy department that he had been lost.
Lat night Dr. Hoeffel informed mr. Joannes that the first report was untrue
and that he is safe. No details were given.
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