RIKUGUN YUSOSEN!

(Prewar Dutch tanker ANASTASIA, later BUKUN MARU)

IJA BUKUN MARU:
Tabular Record of Movement

© 2010-2013 Bob Hackett


E 1929:
Rotterdam, Netherlands. Laid down at Burgerhout's Shipbuilding & Engineering Works shipyard as a 3,029-ton tanker for Nederlandsche-Indische Tankstoomboot Maatschappij (N.I.T.M).

E 1930:
Launched and named ANASTASIA.

December 1930:
Completed and registered at The Hague, Netherlands. Assigned call letters NDFW.

1930-1942:
Based at Java. In N.I.T.M.ís service

15 February 1942:
Singapore falls to the Japanese.

2 March 1942:
Off Tandjong Priok (Batavia), Java. ANASTASIAís crew scuttles and sinks her to avoid capture.

30 October 1942:
Refloated and salvaged by the Japanese.

November 1942:
Requisitioned by the IJA, renamed BUKUN MARU and alloted IJA No. 2061. [1]

18 July 1943:
Departs Singapore. Arrives at Medan, Sumatra.

20 July 1943:
Arrives at Palembang, Sumatra and loads fuel .[2]

26 July 1943:
Departs Palembang.

28 July 1943:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

31 July 1943:
Departs Singapore.

2 August 1943:
Arrives at Pangkalan Susu and loads fuel.

3 August 1943:
Departs Pangkalan Susu.

12 August 1943:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

12 August 1943:
Departs Singapore.

14 August 1943:
Arrives at Pangkalan Susu.

15 August 1943:
Departs Pangkalan Susu and later arrives at Singapore. Discharges fuel.

20 August 1943:
Departs Singapore.

22 August 1943:
Arrives at Pangkalan Susu and loads fuel.

28 August 1943:
Departs Pangkalan Susu.

2 September 1943:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

4 September 1943:
Departs Singapore.

6 September 1943:
Arrives at Medan and loads fuel.

7 September 1943:
Departs Medan.

10 September 1943:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

13 September 1943:
Departs Singapore.

15 September 1943:
Arrives at Pangkalan Susu and loads fuel.

17 September 1943:
Departs Pangkalan Susu.

19 September 1943:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

26 September 1943:
Departs Singapore.

28 September 1943:
Arrives at Pangkalan Susu and loads fuel.

29 September 1943:
Departs Pangkalan Susu.

1 October 1943:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

4 October 1943:
Departs Singapore.

6 October 1943:
Arrives at Belawan, Sumatra and loads fuel.

7 October 1943:
Departs Belawan.

10 October 1943:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

12 October 1943:
Departs Singapore.

15 October 1943:
Arrives at Belawan and loads fuel.

16 October 1943:
Departs Belawan.

18 October 1943:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

21 October 1943:
Departs Singapore.

23 October 1943:
Arrives at Belawan and loads fuel.

25 October 1943:
Departs Belawan.

27 October 1943:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

30 October 1943:
Departs Singapore.

1 November 1943:
Arrives at Pangkalan Susu and loads fuel.

2 November 1943:
Departs Pangkalan Susu.

4 November 1943:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

24 November 1943:
Departs Singapore.

25 November 1943:
Arrives at Belawan and loads fuel.

26 November 1943:
Departs Belawan.

28 November 1943:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

4 December 1943:
Departs Singapore.

6 December 1943:
Arrives at Pangkalan Susu and loads fuel.

8 December 1943:
Departs Pangkalan Susu.

10 December 1943:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

16 December 1943:
Departs Singapore.

19 December 1943:
Arrives at Pangkalan Susu, loads fuel and departs.

21 December 1943:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

25 December 1943:
Departs Singapore.

27 December 1943:
Arrives at Pangkalan Susu. Loads fuel.

28 December 1943:
Departs Pangkalan Susu.

30 December 1943:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

1 January 1944:
Operation of the ship is contracted to an unknowna joint enterprise corporation

4 January 1944:
Departs Singapore.

6 January 1944:
Arrives at Pangkalan Susu and loads fuel.

7 January 1944:
Departs Pangkalan Susu.

9 January 1944:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

15 January 1944:
Departs Singapore.

17 January 1944:
Arrives at Pangkalan Susu. Loads fuel.

18 January 1944:
Departs Pangkalan Susu.

21 January 1944:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel

24 January 1944:
Departs Singapore.

26 January 1944:
Arrives at Pangkalan Susu and loads fuel.

30 January 1944:
Departs Pangkalan Susu.

2 February 1944:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

5 February 1944:
Departs Singapore.

7 February 1944:
Arrives at Pangkalan Susu and loads fuel.

8 February 1944:
Departs Pangkalan Susu.

11 February 1944:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

19 February 1944:
Departs Singapore.

21 February 1944:
Arrives at Belawan and loads fuel.

22 February 1944:
Arrives at Pangkalan Susu and loads fuel.

24 February 1944:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

24 February - 10 March 1944:
Singapore. Undergoes repairs

10 March 1944:
Departs Singapore.

12 March 1944:
Arrives at Palembang and loads fuel.

13 March 1944:
Departs Palembang.

15 March 1944:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

20 March 1944:
Departs Singapore.

21 March 1944:
Arrives at Palembang and loads fuel.

23 March 1944:
Departs Palembang.

25 March 1944:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

28 March 1944: Departs Singapore.

30 March 1944:
Arrives at Palembang and loads fuel.

31 March 1944:
Departs Palembang.

2 April 1944:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

5 April 1944:
Departs Singapore.

6 April 1944:
Arrives at Palembang and loads fuel.

8 April 1944:
Departs Palembang.

10 April 1944:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel

14 April 1944:
Departs Singapore.

16 April 1944:
Arrives at Belawan.

18 April 1944:
Departs Belawan.

20 April 1944:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

26 April 1944:
Departs Singapore.

28 April 1944:
Arrives at Pangkalan Susu and loads fuel.

30 April 1944:
Departs Pangkalan Susu.

2 May 1944:
Arrives at Belawan and departs.

6 May 1944:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

6-22 May 1944:
Singapore. Probably undergoes repairs and maintenance.

22 May 1944:
Departs Singapore.

24 May 1944:
Arrives at Belawan and loads fuel.

27 May 1944:
Departs Belawan.

30 May 1944:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

1 June 1944:
Operation of the ship is contracted to Nippon Tanker Co., Ltd.

3 June 1944:
Departs Singapore.

5 June 1944:
Arrives at Palembang and loads fuel.

7 June 1944:
Departs Palembang.

9 June 1944:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

9 June -14 July 1944:
Singapore. Probably undergoes repairs

14 July 1944:
Departs Singapore.

15 July 1944:
Arrives at Palembang and loads fuel.

17 July 1944:
Departs Palembang.

20 July 1944:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

25 July 1944:
Departs Singapore.

27 July 1944:
Undergoes repairs at an unknown location.

29 July 1944:
Completes repairs.

31 July 1944:
Arrives at Singapore.

3 August 1944:
Departs Singapore.

6 August 1944:
Arrives at Palembang and loads fuel.

7 August 1944:
Departs Palembang.

9 August 1944:
Arrives at Singapore and discharges fuel.

10/11 August 1944: USAAF "Operation Boomerang":
Fifty-four Boeing B-29 "Super FortressĒ heavy bombers of the Twentieth Bomber Commandís 358th (Very Heavy) Bomb Wing at Chengtu, China stage through the newly completed and USAAF equipped 7,200-foot strip at RAF China Bay, Ceylon to make a night radar attack on the Pladjoe refinery at Palembang, the first since its capture. A dozen planes fail, for various reasons, to reach the target, but two bomb the secondary target of Pangkalanbrandan refinery, one an airdrome at Djambi, and 39 reach their primary targets. Part of the force mines the Musi River, through which all of Palembang's exports are shipped. The 3,855 air mile, 19 hour 40 minute flight from Ceylon to Palembang (4,030 to the Musi) and back are the longest single-stage flights made by USAAF combat aircraft in WWII.

Only 9 of the 444th Bomb Group's B-29's reach Palembang and are forced to bomb through heavy overcast over the target They drop 36 five-hundred lb. GP and 16 photo flash bombs. The results at Pladjoe are unobserved, but later deemed poor. The the 462nd Bomb Group's 8 minelaying B-29s have better luck. Dipping under the 1,000-foot ceiling to only 500 feet above the Musi River, they strafe Japanese ships and sow 16 mines - the first such use of B-29s. The "Hellbirds" claim three ships sunk and damage to two more and close the approach to the refinery for a month.

LtCdr D. S. R. Martinís British submarine HMS TERRAPIN from Trincomalee, Ceylon, on patrol off the W coast of Sumatra, acts as a beacon for the B-29s proceeding towards Palembang and air/sea rescue, if needed. The British also set up an elaborate air-sea rescue force comprising submarines, a cruiser, destroyers, lighter vessels, and various aircraft types. One B-29 is lost because of fuel starvation and goes down at sea, 90 ninety miles off China Bay, Ceylon.

12 August 1944:
In the morning, planes and destroyer HMS REDOUBT home in on a "Gibson girl" signal from the B-29's life raft. One gunner was killed in the ditching, but the other crewmen are picked up.

21 August 1944:
BUKUN MARU departs Singapore.

24 August 1944:
Arrives at Belawan and loads fuel.

26 August 1944:
Departs Belawan.

29 August 1944:
Arrives at Singapore.

5 September 1944:
Departs Singapore.

8 September 1944:
Arrives at Surabaya, Java and departs.

9 September 1944:
Arrives at Pangkalan Susu and loads fuel.

10 September 1944:
Departs Pangkalan Susu for Belawan. About 7 nms N of Belawan, BUKUN MARU strikes three mine laid by RN Lt H. A. L. Marsham's British submarine HMS POROISE on 8 Jul '44 and sinks at 03-54N, 98-42E. Her cargo of aviation gasoline burns on the water, destroying the lifeboats and killing all 44 crew and 29 passengers as well as a fishing-boat and her crew.


Authors' Notes:
[1] Also known as ANNAN, BUKUM and TAKEKUN MARU.

[2] "Fuel" as used in this TROM means refined product such as various grades of naval fuel oil, diesel, aviation gasoline and automotive gasoline.

Thanks go to Erich Muehlthaler of Germany.

- Bob Hackett


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