US Navy Confirms Wreck Of WWII Carrier Is USS Ommaney Bay Sunk By Japanese In 1945

The US Navy declared this week that it had identified the wreck of a WWII escort carrier that was lost off the Philippines after a kamikaze attack.

A Casablanca-class carrier dubbed The USS Ommaney Bay (CVE 79) submerged in the Sulu Sea on being struck by a twin-engine Japan-based suicide plane on 4 Jan 1945. Almost 95 sailors perished in this attack, including two on a nearby destroyer and fatally injured by flying debris.

Personnel associated with the US Navy’s Naval History and Heritage Command’s Underwater Archaeology Branch could identify Ommaney Bay with survey information and video footage captured by an experienced dive team.

US Navy
Credit: NHHC

Ommaney Bay is the ultimate resting hub of American Sailors who had made the final sacrifice to defend their nation, declared Samuel J. Cox, NHHC Director and retired US Navy rear admiral. Such a brilliant discovery gives the loved ones of those lost some closure and the rest of the world yet another chance to honour and remember their service to their nation.

The Japanese kamikaze reportedly crashed into the starboard side of Ommaney Bay, releasing two bombs. A series of explosions were brought about by one of the bombs that had entered the flight deck and detonated among the carrier’s heavily gassed aircraft. The second bomb erupted close to the starboard side, rupturing the fire main on the vessel’s second deck.

The order for abandoning the vessel was given since the chance of stored torpedo warheads blowing up at any time went up. As an underwater military craft, the Ommaney Bay wreck is safeguarded by US law and comes under the Department of the Navy’s jurisdiction.

Since the wreck represents the ultimate resting site of the military personnel, any activity that may disturb the place has to be authorized by the NHHC. Ommaney Bay was rewarded with two battle stars for her service in WWII.

Reference: Stripes, Yahoo, Military History Now, Marinelink

Latest Shipping News You Would Like:

Get the Latest Maritime News Delivered to Your Inbox!

Our free, fast, and fun newsletter on the global maritime industry, delivered everyday.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *