(Type C Escort by Takeshi Yuki scanned from "Color Paintings of Japanese Warships")

IJN Escort CD-56:
Tabular Record of Movement

© 2007-2013 Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall

Revision 2

1 June 1944:
Kobe. Laid down at Kawasaki Ship Building, Ltd.

30 July 1944:
Launched and numbered CD-56.

27 September 1944:
Completed and registered in the IJN. Attached to Yokosuka Naval District.

17 November 1944:
Departs Yokosuka.

25 November 1944:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

29 November 1944:
Departs Yokosuka and later that day arrives at Tateyama.

30 November 1944:
CD-56 and AMAKUSA with submarine chaser CH-42, auxiliary minesweepers Wa-12, Wa-14 and auxiliary submarine chaser TAKUNAN MARU No. 2 depart Tateyama escorting convoy No. 3129 consisting of HIYOSHI MARU No. 2 GO bound for Haha Jima (with AMAKUSA and CD-56 as designated escorts) and YAEI and SHIBAZONO MARUs bound for Chichi-Jima. At 1600 heavy seas cause damage to YAEI MARU's hull and wash a Daihatsu landing barge overboard. The ship returns to Tateyama via Hachijo Jima escorted by TAKUNAN MARU No. 2 while the convoy continues its voyage.

1 December 1944:
Arrives at Hachijo Jima.

2 December 1944:
Departs Hachijo Jima.

4 December 1944:
Arrives at Haha Jima.

5 December 1944:
AMAKUSA and CD-56 depart Haha-Jima escorting convoy No. 4205 consisting of HIYOSHI MARU No. 2 GO bound for Yokohama.Shortly after departing they meet up with auxiliary submarine chaser TAKUNAN MARU No. 2 and SHIBAZONO MARU that have left that same day from Chichi-Jima.

9 December 1944:
At 1030 the convoy arrives at Yokohama with CD-56 and AMAKUSA detaching for nearby Yokosuka.

16 December 1944:
At 0800, CD-56 departs Yokosuka for Chichi-Jima, Ogasawara Gunto, (Bonin Islands) with kaibokan AMAKUSA, CD-4, minesweeper W-27 and auxiliary subchaser TAKUNAN MARU No. 2 escorting convoy No. 3217 consisting of AITOKU MARU, UNYO MARU No. 6 and HIYOSHI MARU No. 2. The convoy first arrives at Tateyama.

17 December 1944:
Departs Tateyama.

20 December 1944:
Late in the evening arrives at Chichi-Jima.

21 December 1944:
At 0337, HIYOSHI MARU No. 2 is mined and badly damaged and has to be beached off Kagaura. AMAKUSA also sets off a magnetic mine beneath her keel, but with the aid of two pumps borrowed from CD-56 is able to control the flooding and proceed.

22 December 1944:
At 1400, departs Chichi-Jima for Yokosuka with the convoy on its return journey. The convoy is renumbered No. 4222.

26 December 1944:
At 1700, arrives at Yokosuka.

31 December 1944:
Departs Yokosuka and later that day arrives at Tateyama.

1 January 1945:
CD-56 departs Tateyama for Chichi-Jima with kaibokan CD-4 and auxiliary subchaser TAKUNAN MARU No. 2 escorting convoy No. 3231 consisting of SHOTO, AITOKU MARUs and UNYO MARU No. 6.

4 January 1945:
At 0100, arrives at Chichi-Jima. Unloads and departs the same day. Renamed convoy No. 4104. At about 1705, small cargo ship SHOTO MARU is torpedoed in the bow by LtCdr Talbot E. Harper’s (USNA ’37) USS KINGFISH (SS-234) and slowly sinks. Auxiliary subchaser TAKUNAN MARU No. 2 removes most of her crew, but six men are lost. CD-4 counterattacks the submarine.

8 January 1945:
At 1000, arrives at Tateyama.

9 January 1945:
Departs Tateyama and at 1500, arrives at Yokosuka.

15 January 1945:
Departs Yokosuka and later arrives at Tateyama.

16 January 1945:
At 1200, CD-56 departs Tateyama for Chichi-Jima with kaibokan CD-12, subchasers CH-42, CH-47 and minesweeper W-29 escorting convoy No. 3115 consisting of 1,924-ton freighter KURETAKE MARU and YONEYAMA MARUs and NANYO MARU No. 1 and UNYO MARU No. 6.

19 January 1945:
Arrives at Futami, Chichi-Jima.

20 January 1945:
At 0013, CD-56 departs Chichi-Jima for Tateyama with kaibokan CD-12 and minesweeper W-29 escorting convoy No. 4119 consisting of KURETAKE MARU and NANYO MARU No. 1.

23 January 1945:
At 0100, the convoy arrives at Tateyama. Later that day transfers to Yokosuka.

29 January 1945:
Departs Yokosuka.

30 January 1945:
Arrives back at Yokosuka.

5 February 1945:
CD-56 departs Yokosuka for Chichi-Jima with CD-49 and an auxiliary subchaser escorting convoy No. 3205 consisting of KURETAKE, DAIBI MARUs and UNYO MARU No. 6. The captain of CD-56 acts as convoy commander.

6 February 1945:
The convoy anchors in Tateyama Bay for the night. That evening, the ships huddle together, facing into a strong northwest wind. Flames are seen rising high in the air after a USAAF B-29 heavy-bomber raid on Tokyo.

7 February 1945:
Early. The convoy departs Tateyama Bay and heads southward. 10 miles east of Mikura-Jima, KURETAKE MARU is torpedoed by LtCdr (later Cdr) Robert B. Lander's (USNA ’37) USS RONQUIL (SS-396). KURETAKE MARU is forced to retire towards Tokyo Bay with CD-56 as escort. The flag of the convoy is handed over to CD-49. She and the rest of the convoy continue southward.

9 February 1945:
Arrives at Chichi-Jima. At the time of entry into Futami Harbour, the convoy is shadowed by a lone B-24 heavy-bomber. However, no attack develops.

16 February 1945:
Five miles E of Mikura Jima, S of Tokyo. At midnight, LtCdr (later Captain) Alexander K. Tyree’s (USNA ’36) USS BOWFIN (SS-287) torpedoes and sinks CD-56 at 33-54N, 139-43E. All 177 hands are lost.

25 May 1945:
Removed from the Navy List.

Thanks to Mr. Gilbert Casse of France.

-Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall

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