Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Seventy Years ago Today. . . .



While patrolling Pearl Harbor Entrance on Sunday, December 7, 1941, the U.S.S. Ward attacked an unidentified submarine in the Restricted Area off the Harbor.

The facts are as follows:

• At 0637 the Officer-of-the-Deck said, "Captain come on the bridge". A conning tower with periscope of submarine was visible. She was apparently headed for Pearl Harbor trailing the U.S.S. Antares. The Antares was standing toward the channel entrance towing a lighter.

• At 0640 the attack was started. The Ward bore down on the submarine while accelerating from 5 to 25 knots.

• At 0645 the Ward opened fire with No. 1 and 3 guns and began dropping depth charges. One shot was fired from each gun. The shot from No. 1 gun missed, passing directly over the conning tower. The shot from No. 3 gun fired at a range of 560 yards or less struck the submarine at the waterline which was the junction of the hull and coning tower. Damage was seen by several members of the crew. This was a square positive hit. There was no evidence of ricochet. The submarine was seen to heel over to starboard. The projectile was not seen to explode outside the hull of the submarine. There was no splash of any size that might results from an explosion or ricochet.

• Immediately after being hit the submarine appeared to slow and sink. She ran into our depth charge barrage and appeared to be directly over an exploding charge. The depth charges were set for 100 feet.

• The submarine sank in 1200 feet of water and could not be located with supersonic detector. There was a large amount of oil on the surface where the depth charges exploded.

• The attack was made at 0645 which was before Pearl Harbor was bombed by Japanese planes.

• A dispatch by voice transmission was sent to Commandant, Fourteenth Naval District at 0645 which stated:

• "We have attacked, fired upon, and dropped depth charges on a submarine operating in defensive sea areas."

• The performance of duty by the officers and men during this attack was in accordance with the traditions of this service.



The Japanese attacked just before 8:00 AM local time and it was all over by 10:00 AM.

Of the five midget subs sent into Pearl, none seems to have made it. Only one of the 10 crew survived and became our first POW.

Watching CNN yesterday there were only 4 survivors at the memorial. . . soon there will be none and it will be up to us to keep the memory alive. We have our work cut out for us as the schools want to forget this stuff.

Remember !

There was a time we stood up to the evil in the world and held the line. No matter what the liberals say, it was the right thing to do and we paid a hell of a price so the rest of the world could be free.

Twenty-one ships of the U.S. Pacific Fleet were sunk or damaged: (almost all would be raised again)

USS Arizona (BB-39)
USS California (BB-44)
USS Maryland (BB-46)
USS Nevada (BB-36)
USS Oklahoma (BB-37)
USS Pennsylvania (BB-38)
USS Tennessee (BB-43) 
USS West Virginia (BB-48)

USS Helena (CL-50)

USS Honolulu (CL-48)

USS Raleigh (CL-7)

USS Cassin (DD-372)
USS Downes (DD-375)
USS Helm (DD-388)
USS Shaw (DD-373)

Seaplane tender USS Curtiss (AV-4)

Target ship (ex-battleship) USS Utah (AG-16)

Repair ship USS Vestal (AR-4)

Minelayer USS Oglala (CM-4)

Tug USS Sotoyomo (YT-9

Floating Drydock Number 2.


Aircraft losses were 188 destroyed and 159 damaged, the majority hit before they had a chance to take off.

American dead numbered 2,403. That figure included 68 civilians, most of them killed by improperly fused anti-aircraft shells landing in Honolulu. There were 1,178 military and civilian wounded.

They missed our carriers. . . . .

We did get payback. . . . of the Japanese ships that attacked us at Pearl well, we got most of them.

Set on fire by planes from Enterprise (CV-6), 4 June 1942. Torpedoed and scuttled by destroyers Arashi and Nowaki on 5 June 1942 northwest of Midway Island

CV- Kaga
Set on fire by planes from Enterprise (CV-6) and sunk, 4 June 1942 northwest of Midway Island

CV- Hiryu 
Set on fire by planes from Yorktown (CV-5) and Enterprise (CV-6), 4 June 1942 Torpedoed and scuttled by destroyers Kazegumo and Yugumo, 5 June 1942. North West of Midway Island

CV- Soryu 
Set on fire and blown up by planes from Yorktown (CV-5). Sunk northwest of Midway Island, 4 June 1942

Nautilus (SS-168) claims to have delivered the death blow by hitting Soryu with two torpedoes shortly after she was hit by Yorktown`s aircraft

CV- Shokaku
Sunk by 3 torpedoes fired from Cavalla (SS-244) 140 miles north of Yap Island, 19 June 1944

CV- Zuikaku 
Struck by 6 torpedoes and 7 bombs from aircraft from Essex (CV-9) and Lexington (CV-16) and sunk 220 miles east northeast of Cape Engano, 25 October 1944

BB- Hiei 
Crippled by 50 shell hits of 8 inch or less during the first Naval Battle Of Guadalcanal. Struck by 4 torpedoes from aircraft of Enterprise (CV-6) and sunk off Savo Island, 13 November 1942

BB- Kirishima 
Disabled by gunfire from Washington (BB-56) during the Second Battle Of Guadalcanal. Kirishima received nine 16 inch and over forty 5 inch hits at a range of only 8400 yards and was scuttled, 15 November 1942

CA- Tone 
Sunk in shallow water by aircraft from Task Force 38 near Kure Island, 24 July 1945, broken up for scrap in 1948

CA - Chickuma 
Torpedoed by aircraft from Task Force 77.4.2 northeast of Samar. Scuttled by torpedoes from destroyer Nowake October 25 1944

CL- Abukuma
Bombed by U.S.A.A.F. aircraft 10 miles Southeast of Negros, Philippine Islands, 24 October 1944. Sank 26 October 1944

DD- Tanikaze 
Torpedoed and sunk by Harder (SS-257) 90 miles South West of Basilan, 9 June 1944

DD- Urakaze 
Torpedoed and sunk by Sealion (SS-315) 65 miles north northwest of Keelung, Formosa, 21 November 1944

DD- Isokaze 
Damaged by aircraft of Task Force 58. Scuttled 150 miles southwest of Nagasaki, 7 April 1945

DD- Hamakaze 
Sunk by aircraft from Hornet (CV-12) and Cabot (CVL-28) 150 miles Southwest of Nagasaki, 7 April 1945

DD- Kasumi 
Badly damaged by aircraft from Task Force 58. Scuttled 150 miles Southwest of Nagasaki, 7 April 1945

DD- Arare 
Torpedoed and sunk by Growler (SS-215) 7 miles east of Kiska Harbor, Alaska 5 July 1942

DD- Kagero 
Damaged by a mine and sunk by US Navy aircraft 5 miles southwest of Rendova, 8 May 1943

DD- Shiranui 
Sunk by aircraft of Task Force 77 80 miles north of Panay, 27 October 1944

DD- Akigumo 
Torpedoed and sunk by Redfin (SS-272) 30 miles southeast of Zamboanga, 11 April 1944

DD- Akebono 
Sailed with Pearl Harbor Task Force but was assigned to bombard Midway Island. Sunk by aircraft from Task Force 38 in Manila Bay, 13 November 1944

DD- Ushio 
Sailed with Pearl Harbor Task Force but was assigned to bombard Midway Island. Ushio was the only Japanese ship that took part on the attack on Pearl Harbor not to be sunk during the war. Ushio surrendered badly damaged and was scrapped in 1946



Data from US Naval History page and Navy


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