The Sinking of Japanese Submarine I-41

There has been some question about the sinking of I-41 during WWII.  Recent documentation appears to substantiate the sinking of I-41 by destroyer escorts USS LAWRENCE C. TAYLOR DE 415 and her sister-ship USS MELVIN R. NAWMAN DE 416 and two planes from ANZIO CVE 57 on 18 November 1944, east of Samar, 12 d. 44' N, 130 d. 42' E.  .

Roscoe (1) and Cressman (2)  credit DE 415 with sinking I-26 on 17 November 1944 and I-41 on 18 November 1944.  However, the coordinates given for both sinkings are the same - 12 d. 44' N, 130 d. 42' E. 

Roscoe's and Cressman's credit for sinking I-26 is incorrect.  Recent information verifies that I-26 was sunk by destroyer escorts COOLBAUGH DE 217 and/or USS RICHARD M. ROWELL DE 403, both having dropped depth charges and hedgehogs in their attack on I-26 on 26 October 1944, east of Leyte.  King (3) notes that I-26 was sunk 25 October 1944.  This one day date difference is easily accounted for by which side of the dateline was used.

DANFS (4) rightfully gives credits to DE 415 for the sinking of I-41 on 18 November 1944.

At, Bob Hackett (5) has published an excellent "Tabular Record of Movement" of   I-41.  This document was written in 2001 with the aid of Dr. Higuchi Tatsuhiro of Japan and substantiates the sinking of I-41 by DEs 415 and 416.

Many thanks to Brad Burge for bringing this question to the attention of the DESA webmaster and prompting the research to correct the data.


(1) Roscoe, Theodore (1953).  United States Destroyer Operations in World War II.  Annapolis:  United States Naval Institute.

(2) Cressman, Robert J.  (2000).  The Official Chronology of the U. S. Navy in World War II.  Washington:  United States Naval Institute.

(3)  King, Admiral Ernest J. (1946).  U. S. Navy At War, 1941-1945, Official Reports To The Secretary of the Navy.  Washington:  United States Navy Department

(4) Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships, (DANFS), Vol. IV (1969).  Washington:  Navy Department, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, Navy History Division.

(5) HIJMS Submarine I-41: Tabular Record of Movement at Combined Fleets

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