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On `eternal patrol': in honor of the 100th anniversary of the U.S. Submarine Service, VFW magazine presents this tribute to all those men who have served, and especially sacrificed their lives, in the "Silent Service."(Chronology)(Illustration)

Although submarines were used well before the 20th century, the U.S. Submarine Service traces its birth to April 11, 1900. However, this memorial list includes all known deaths of American submariners in the line of duty dating back to 1851. It encompasses both accidental and combat casualties.

During WWII, U.S. submarine service was deadly. Fatalities resulted from both combat and accident. Besides the men lost in sub sinkings, another 85 died in various other incidents. This brings the total number of American submariners killed during WWII to 3,591.

Submarines that were lost but on which no crewmen were killed are not included on this list. Conversely, if a submarine sustained deaths but did not sink, it is included. However, individual personnel losses during the Cold War are not always known. So some of those incidents are not listed here.

If you are aware of any lethal casualties not listed here, please send us all the details.
CHRONOLOGY OF SUBMARINER LOSSES

DATE             SUBMARINE           LOCATION

1851             Philips submarine   Lake Erie

CIVIL WAR

1862             Pioneer (C) (1)     Lake Pontchartrain
1863     Apr 2   Alligator (Union)   Chesapeake Bay
                 H.L. Hunley (C)     Charleston Harbor
                 H.L. Hunley (C)     Charleston
        Aug 29   H.L. Hunley (C)     Ft. Johnson, Charleston
        Oct 15   H.L. Hunley (C)     Stone River, Charleston
                 H.L. Hunley (C)     Charleston Harbor
1864    Feb 17   H.L. Hunley (C)     Charleston Roads

PEACETIME

1872             Intelligent Whale   Newark, N.J.
1912    Oct 11   F.1                 Port Watsonville, Calif.
1915    Mar 25   F.4                 Honolulu
1916    Jan 15   E.2                 Brooklyn Navy Yard
1917    Dec 17   F.1                 Off Point Loma, Calif.
1919     Jul 2   G.2                 Long Island Sound
1920    Mar 24   H.1                 Magdalena Bay, Calif.
1921    Sep 26   R.6                 San Pedro, Calif.
1923    Oct 28   0.5                 Limon Bay, Canal Zone
1925    Sep 25   S.51                Off Block Island
1927    Dec 17   S.4                 Off Cape Cod
1939    May 23   Squalus             Off Isles of Shoals, N.H.

WORLD WAR II

1941    Jun 20   0.9                 Off Isles of Shoals, N.H.
        Dec 10   Sealion             Cavite Naval Base
1942    Jan 24   S.26                Gulf of Panama
        Feb 11   Shark (SS-174)      Celebes Sea
         Mar 3   Perch               Java (northeast of)
        Jul 30   Grunion             Kiska
        Aug 17   Bass                Off Balboa, Panama
1943    Jan 10   Argonaut            Rabaul, New Britain
         Feb 7   Growler             Rabaul
        Feb 16   Amberjack           Rabaul
       Mar 5-6   Grampus             Blackett Strait
        Mar 15   Triton              Rabaul
         Apr 3   Pickerel            Kurile Islands
        Apr 22   Grenadier           Strait of Malacca
        May 28   Runner              Off Japan
        Jun 12   R.12                Off Key West
        Aug 29   Pompano             Honshu, Japan
         Sep 9   Grayling            Lingayen Gulf, P.I.
        Sep 28   Cisco               South China Sea
         Oct 7   S-44                Off Attu
        Oct 11   Wahoo               Tsushima Straits
        Oct 12   Dorado              Gulf of Mexico, C.Z.
        Nov 16   Corvina             Truk Islands, Carolines
        Nov 19   Sculpin             Truk (north of)
        Nov 23   Capelin             Celebes, Indonesia
1944     Jan 5   Scorpion            Yellow Sea
        Feb 27   Grayback            East China Sea
        Feb 29   Trout               Bonin Islands
        Mar 26   Tullibee            Palau, Carolines
         Apr 7   Gudgeon             Marianas
         Jun 1   Herring             Kurile Islands
        Jun 14   Golet               Off N. Honshu
         Jul 4   S-28                Pearl Harbor
        Jul 26   Robalo              Palawan Island
        Aug 13   Flier               Palawan Island
        Aug 24   Harder              Luzon, P.I.
         Oct 3   Seawolf             Off Celebes/Morotai
        Oct 17   Escolar             Yellow Sea
        Oct 24   Shark (SS-314)      Formosa
        Oct 25   Tang                Formosa
         Nov 7   Albacore            Off Japan
         Nov 8   Growler             East China Sea
        Nov 11   Scamp               East of Tokyo Bay
1945    Jan 12   Swordfish           Okinawa
        Feb ??   Sea Fox             Guam
         Feb 4   Barbel              South China Sea
        Mar 20   Kete                Okinawa
        Mar 28   Trigger             East China Sea
         Apr 8   Snook               Formosa
         May 3   Lagarto             Gulf of Siam
        Jun 18   Bonefish            Honshu
         Aug 6   Bullhead            Java Sea

COLD WAR

1949    Aug 26   Cochino             Off Norway
        Aug 26   Tusk                Off Norway
1963    Apr 10   Thresher            220 miles east of Boston
1968    May 21   Scorpion            250 miles S.W. of Azores

                                             NUMBER
DATE             REASON                      KILLED

1851             Dived too deeply             1

CIVIL WAR

1862             Foundered                    3
1863     Apr 2   Foundered in storm          16 (?)
                 Swamped                      8
                 Foundered in storm           6
        Aug 29   Capsized in collision        5
        Oct 15   Diving error                 9
                 Fouled lines                 7
1864    Feb 17   Entangled with target        7

PEACETIME

1872             Design fault                13
1912    Oct 11   Broke moorings               2
1915    Mar 25   Flooding                    21
1916    Jan 15   Internal explosion           5
1917    Dec 17   Collision with submarine    19
1919     Jul 2   Foundered                    3
1920    Mar 24   Ran aground                  4
1921    Sep 26   Torpedo tubes opened         2
1923    Oct 28   Collision                    3
1925    Sep 25   Collision                   33
1927    Dec 17   Rammed                      40
1939    May 23   Valve failure               26

WORLD WAR II

1941    Jun 20   Accident                    33
        Dec 10   Combat                       5
1942    Jan 24   Accident                    46
        Feb 11   Combat                      58
         Mar 3   Combat (2)                   9
        Jul 30   Unknown                     70
        Aug 17   Accident                    26
1943    Jan 10   Combat                     105
         Feb 7   Combat                       4
        Feb 16   Combat                      74
       Mar 5-6   Combat                      71
        Mar 15   Combat                      74
         Apr 3   Combat                      74
        Apr 22   Combat (2)                   4
        May 28   Combat                      78
        Jun 12   Accident                    40 (3)
        Aug 29   Combat                      77
         Sep 9   Unknown                     76
        Sep 28   Combat                      76
         Oct 7   Combat                      55
        Oct 11   Combat                      80
        Oct 12   Accident                    76
        Nov 16   Combat                      82
        Nov 19   Combat (2)                  63
        Nov 23   Combat                      78
1944     Jan 5   Combat                      76
        Feb 27   Combat                      80
        Feb 29   Combat                      81
        Mar 26   Accident                    79
         Apr 7   Combat                      78
         Jun 1   Combat                      84
        Jun 14   Combat                      82
         Jul 4   Accident                    50
        Jul 26   Combat                      81
        Aug 13   Combat                      78
        Aug 24   Combat                      79
         Oct 3   Accident                    82 (4)
        Oct 17   Combat                      82
        Oct 24   Combat                      87
        Oct 25   Accident                    78
         Nov 7   Combat                      86
         Nov 8   Combat                      86
        Nov 11   Combat                      83
1945    Jan 12   Unknown                     89
        Feb ??   Combat (5)                   5
         Feb 4   Combat                      81
        Mar 20   Unknown                     87
        Mar 28   Combat                      89
         Apr 8   Unknown                     84
         May 3   Combat                      85
        Jun 18   Combat                      85
         Aug 6   Combat                      84

COLD WAR

1949    Aug 26   Battery explosion            1
        Aug 26   Swept overboard              6 (6)
1963    Apr 10   Structural leak            129
1968    May 21   Struck by own torpedo       99
                 (cause debatable.)

FOOTNOTES:

(1) (C)--Confederate.
(2) Lives lost in POW camps. Sculpin lost 51 as POWs.
(3) In addition, two Brazilian sailors died.
(4) In addition, 17 U.S. Army personnel aboard died.
(5) While refitting at Guam, five crew members were killed in a
Japanese ambush.
(6) These six men were lost during the rescue operation for the USS
Cochino.

SOURCES:

Few Survived: A Comprehensive Survey of Submarine Accidents and
Disasters (London: Leo Cooper 1996) by Edvvyn Gray. U.S. Submarine
Losses in World War II, compiled by Keith Leasure, Oct. 20, 1999.
Courtesy of John A. Deane, Thames River Chapter, U.S. Submarine
Veterans World War II. Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships
(Naval Historical Center, 1991).
COPYRIGHT 2000 Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2000 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Publication:VFW Magazine
Article Type:Chronology
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Apr 1, 2000
Words:1134
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