A Navy destroyer that had sunk during World War II and claimed the lives of 84 Americans has been discovered off Japan’s coast, the authorities revealed on Thursday.
L. Abele, the USS Mannert, named for a U.S. submarine commander, was the first-ever American warship to be sunk by a Japanese suicide rocket, per the Naval History and Heritage Command. The vessel was sunk on 12 April 1945, the day President Franklin D. Roosevelt died.
The Abele had been operating approximately 75 miles off the northern coast of Japan when the radar reflected that the Japanese aircraft was approaching. The destroyer then engaged the planes, impairing multiple enemy aircraft during the fight until a plane crashed on the warship. A minute after, the vessel was hit at the waterline by a human-guided and rocket-powered bomb. The resulting explosion caused the vessel’s stern and bow to rapidly buckle, per the command.
The Abele was the first of the three vessels to be hit and the first-ever U.S. Navy vessel to be sunk by a human-guided kamikaze bomb.
The Naval History and Heritage Command’s underwater archaeology branch said that the identity of the wreck was confirmed with the information offered by Tim Taylor, an ocean explorer and the CEO of Tiburon Subsea. He also operates the “Lost 52 Project,” a specialized group that works to identify and locate missing battleships from World War II.
In a news release on the “Lost 52 Project” website, Taylor said that discovering the Abele was personal since his father served in the Navy and encountered a similar kamikaze attack on his vessel.
Taylor’s father had come close to the same fate as Abele’s crew members just days before. This was an emotive discovery for Taylor that connected him to his father, he mentioned in a statement.
The Abele’s wreckage comes under the command’s jurisdiction and is safeguarded from intrusion by U.S. law and under the jurisdiction of the Navy.
Mannert L. Abele is the final resting place for 84 American sailors who sacrificed in defence of their nation, mentioned Samuel Cox, the director of the command. He passed on his deepest thanks and congratulations to Tim Taylor and his team for discovering the wreck site. Its discovery permits little closure to the near and dear ones of those lost and provides yet another chance to remember and honour them.
References: NBC News, Stars Stripes, NBC Los Angeles
Shipping News You Would Like:
The information contained in this website is for general information purposes only. While we endeavour to keep the information up to date and correct, we make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability with respect to the website or the information, products, services, or related graphics contained on the website for any purpose. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk.
In no event will we be liable for any loss or damage including without limitation, indirect or consequential loss or damage, or any loss or damage whatsoever arising from loss of data or profits arising out of, or in connection with, the use of this website.
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.