SENSUIKAN!

(Type J1 submarine - colorized photo by Irootoko Jr)

IJN Submarine I-2:
Tabular Record of Movement

© 2001-2013 Bob Hackett & Sander Kingsepp
Revision 5


6 August 1923:
Kobe. Laid down at Kawasaki's Kobe Yard as SS-75.

23 February 1925:
Launched.

1 November 1924:
Renumbered I-2.

20 October 1925:
LtCdr (later Captain) Watanabe Tokushiro (37) is appointed the Chief Equipping Officer.

24 July 1926:
Completed and registered in the Yokosuka Naval District. LtCdr Watanabe is appointed Commanding Officer. Proceeds to Yokosuka by the end of month.

1 August 1926:
Assigned to SubDiv 7, Subron 2, at Second Fleet with I-1.

15 November 1927:
LtCdr Kobayashi Mitsuyoshi (37)(former CEO /CO of I-121) is appointed CO.

10 December 1928:
LtCdr Kosokabe Yuzuru (38) assumes command.

15 November 1929:
Placed in reserve for modernization until 15 November 1930. During the modernization, her German-built diesel engines and the entire battery are replaced. LtCdr Kosokabe is reassigned.

15 November 1930:
LtCdr (later Rear Admiral) Akiyama Katsuzo (40)(former CO of I-58) assumes command.

1 December 1931:
LtCdr (later Rear Admiral) Imaizumi Yoshijiro (44)(former CO of RO-62) assumes command. LtCdr Akiyama is promoted Commander and reassigned as ComSubDiv 6.

22 October 1934:
LtCdr Kume Ikuji (46)(former CO of I-56) assumes command.

10 January 1935:
Yokosuka, Hemi pier. Between 1450 and 1540, I-2 is inspected by German Naval Attaché Captain (later Admiral) Paul Wenneker (future CO of panzerschiff DEUTSCHLAND/later LUTZOW). His visit to I-3 is canceled because of bad weather.

1 October 1935:
Placed in reserve for modernization until 1 December 1936. During a rebuild the conning tower receives a more streamlined shape. The American-built K-tube sonar is replaced with a domestic set.

15 November 1935:
LtCdr (later Rear Admiral, posthumously) Kobayashi Hajime (48) (former CO of I-57) assumes command.

5 January 1936:
LtCdr Kobayashi is assigned additional duty as CO of I-3.

26 March 1936:
LtCdr Kobayashi resumes full-time duty as CO of I-2.

2 November 1936:
LtCdr Kobayashi assigned additional duty as CO of I-1 and I-3.

1 December 1936:
Cdr (later Rear Admiral, posthumously) Fukaya Sokichi (46)(former CO of I-62) assumes command. In a change-of-command swap, LtCdr Kobayashi is reassigned as CO of I-62.

7 July 1937: The Marco Polo Bridge (The "First China Incident"):
Hun River, Lugouqiao, China. Japanese troops on night maneuvers fire blank cartridges. Nearby Chinese troops fire back, but do not cause injuries. At morning roll call, the Japanese discover a soldier missing and assume the Chinese captured him. They demand entry to a Peking suburb to look for the soldier. The Chinese refuse. The Japanese then shell the city and an undeclared war on China begins.

28 July 1937:
In SubDiv 7, SubRon 1, First Fleet, with I-1 and I-3.

21-23 August 1937:
East China Sea. Submarines I-2, I-1, I-3, I-4, I-5 and I-6 provide distant cover for BatDiv 1's NAGATO, MUTSU, BatDiv3's HARUNA and KIRISHIMA and light cruiser ISUZU ferrying troops from Tadotsu, Shikoku, to the Shanghai area.

15 November 1937:
Cdr (later Captain, posthumously) Endo Keiyu (46)(former CO of RO-67) assumes command. Cdr Fukaya is reassigned as XO of light cruiser OI.

15 December 1938:
Cdr (later Rear Admiral, posthumously) Fujii Akiyoshi (49)(former CO of I-152) assumes command. Cdr Endo is later assigned as ComSubDiv 9. I-2 serves as training vessel at the Kure submarine school.

20 October 1939:
Cdr Fujii is assigned additional duty as CO of I-124.

23 October 1939:
Cdr Fujii resumes full-time duty as CO of I-2.

20 November 1939:
Placed in reserve for modernization until 31 July 1941. During a refit, I-2's Type 15 torpedo tubes are fitted with impulse tanks. Collapsible radio masts are landed and a long range very low frequency (VLF) receiver installed. Cdr Fujii is assigned additional duty as CO of I-3.

25 July 1940:
Cdr Fujii resumes full-time duty as CO of I-2.

20 September 1940:
Cdr Fujii assigned additional duty as Chief Equipping Officer of I-22.

15 November 1940:
Cdr Fujii resumes full-time duty as CO of I-2. SubRon 2 is reassigned to Sixth Fleet.

31 July 1941:
LtCdr Inada Hiroshi (51) (former CO of I-169) is appointed CO. Cdr. Fujii is reassigned as CO of I-9.

10 November 1941: Operation "Z":
Saeki Bay. In Vice Admiral Shimizu Mitsumi's (former CO of ISE) Sixth Fleet with Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Yamazaki Shigeaki's (former CO of old CA YAKUMO) SubRon 2. I-2 is in Captain (later Rear Admiral) Shimamoto Hisagoro's SubDiv 7 with I-1 and I-3 based in the Yokosuka Naval District. Cdr Inada Hiroshi is I-2's Commanding Officer.

Admiral Shimizu convenes a meeting of all his commanders aboard his flagship, light cruiser KATORI. The commanders are briefed on the planned attack on Pearl Harbor.

16 November 1941:
At 1200 departs Yokosuka for Hawaiian Islands with ComSubDiv 7 Capt Shimamoto Hisagoro aboard.

1 December 1941:
Arrives within 300 miles from Oahu.

2 December 1941:
The coded signal "Niitakayama nobore (Climb Mt. Niitaka) 1208" is received from the Combined Fleet. It signifies that hostilities will commence on 8 December (Japan time). Mt. Niitaka, located in Formosa (now Taiwan), is then the highest point in the Japanese Empire.

7 December 1941: The Attack on Pearl Harbor:
Arrives to her assigned patrol sector in Kauai Channel between Oahu and Kauai with I-3. SubRon 2 is arrayed to the northeast and northwest of Oahu. Its mission is to reconnoiter and attack any ships that try to sortie from Pearl Harbor.

27 December 1941:
I-2 receives an order from ComSubRon 2 (aboard I-7) to shell Kahului Harbor, Maui, on 30 December.

30 December 1941:
Arrives off Kahului and conducts periscopic reconnaissance, spotting a small merchant moored by the pier. After sundown I-2 surfaces and fires ten 5.5-inch HE shells at that vessel. Most shells fall short of the target, some land in direction of Puunene.

9 January 1942:
Departs her patrol area to join the hunt for USS LEXINGTON (CV-2), detected by I-18.

22 January 1942:
Arrives at Kwajalein with I-1 and I-3.

24 January 1942:
Departs Kwajalein for Yokosuka with I-1 and I-3.

1 February 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

8 February 1942:
I-2 is assigned to the Dutch East Indies Invasion Force in Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Ichioka Hisashi's (former CO of YURA) SubRon 2 with I-1, I-3, I-4, I-6 and flagship I-7.

12 February 1942:
Departs Yokosuka for Staring Bay, SE Celebes (now Sulawesi).

16 February 1942:
Arrives at Palau and refuels from oiler FUJISAN MARU.

17 February 1942:
I-2 and I-3 depart Palau for Staring Bay at Kendari, Celebes in the Dutch East Indies.

22 February 1942:
Arrives at Staring Bay, departs in the afternoon in company of I-3, heading for SW coast of Australia on her second war patrol.

March 1942: Operation "C" - The Raids in the Indian Ocean:
Headquarters, Combined Fleet orders the western coasts of India and Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) be reconnoitered before the commencement of Operation C." All of SubRon 2's boats, except I-I, are to participate in the operation.

1 March 1942:
Indian Ocean, S of Bali Island. About 2003 (GMT), I-2 attacks two Allied steamers in 13-50S, 113-30E and claims one as sunk. [1]

2 March 1942:
About 0058, I-2 attacks another merchant in the same area, but fails to score a hit.[2]

11 March 1942:
60 miles S of Padang, W Sumatra. LtCdr Inada sights Captain Walter Bird's 4,360-ton armed British freighter CHILKA (00-23S, 95-41E) on a voyage from Calcutta to Padang. At 0023, I-2 battle-surfaces on CHILKA’s port quarter and opens fire with both deck guns. CHILKA returns fire, but receives 14 hits in 25 minutes; three officers, three lascars and one gunner are killed. After his only gun is disabled, Captain Bird orders the engines stopped and signals his surrender. I-2 then ceases fire, allowing the survivors to abandon ship. CHILKA sinks in position 00-30S, 95-50E.

Later, Captain Bird embarks in a boat which he navigates to the Dutch East Indies wherew his ship's company is housed and the wounded attended. Then, with six volunteers, he sets out in a ship's lifeboat for Ceylon. On the 24th day of the passage he is rescued by a Greek vessel, possibly POINT CLEAR, off Madras, S India. Captain Bird is awarded the Order of the British Empire (OBE) and the Lloyd War Medal for bravery at sea.

14 March 1942:
Arrives at Penang, Malaya.

16 March 1942:
Vice Admiral, the Marquis, Komatsu Teruhisa (former CO of CA NACHI) assumes command of the Sixth Fleet (Submarines).

22 March 1942:
At 1000 departs Penang to reconnoiter Trincomalee, Ceylon.

31 March 1942:
Arrives in the area.

3 April 1942:
Off Trincomalee. I-2 acts as a weather report ship. Transmits her first reconnaissance and weather report from that area.

4 April 1942:
At 0631 (local), I-2 sends a radio message that says: "Reached a point ten miles off the Bay of Trincomalee at 1100 hours (0800 local), 2 April, but failed to gain entrance into the bay because of hostile patrol boats. No enemy vessels except patrol boats sighted in the vicinity of the mouth of the bay. Have been on lookout in the area since 31 March, but no hostile aircraft have yet been sighted before or after sunset nor during the night (cruised submerged during the day)."

5 April 1942: Operation "C":
Vice Admiral Nagumo Chuichi's Carrier Striking Force ("Kido Butai") attacks the British naval base on Columbo, Ceylon (now Sri Lanka. They wreck the base's facilities, destroy 27 aircraft and sink several ships. A floatplane finds Vice Admiral James Somerville's Eastern Fleet's cruisers HMS CORNWALL and DORSETSHIRE at sea and Nagumo's airmen sink both ships, but are unsuccessful in their search for the rest of Somerville's fleet.

7 April 1942:
LtCdr Inada reports the sinking of an unidentified merchant in position 00-48N, 82-18E.

9 April 1942: Operation "C":
Early in the morning I-2 transmits a weather report to Nagumo’s task force.

Nagumo's Striking Force attacks the British naval base at Trincomalee, Ceylon. They wreck the base's facilities and shoot down nine planes. A floatplane spots old light carrier HMS HERMES and the Australian destroyer HMAS VAMPIRE 65 miles S of the base. The Striking Force sinks both. Nagumo's aircraft also find and sink several smaller ships.

10 April 1942:
Departs her patrol area for Singapore. Reassigned to the Advanced Force.

15 April 1942:
Arrives at Singapore.

21 April 1942:
Departs Singapore for Yokosuka.

1 May 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka. During a refit her 7.7-mm bridge-mounted machine gun is replaced with a 13.2-mm Type 93 machine gun and her Zeiss 3-meter rangefinder with a Japanese Type 97 rangefinder. Some of the armor protecting the torpedo storage compartment is removed and an automatic trim system is installed.

5 June 1942: Operation "AL"- The Invasion of the Western Aleutians:
Twenty ships of Vice Admiral Hosogaya Boshiro's (former CO of MUTSU) Fifth Fleet, including light cruisers KISO and TAMA, three destroyers, three kaibokan, three minesweepers and four transports land Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Omori Sentaro's (former CO of ISE) Occupation Force on Attu, Aleutians without opposition.

7 June 1942:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Ono Takeji's Occupation Force occupies Kiska, also without opposition.

10 June 1942:
Reassigned to the Northern Unit with I-1 and I-3. Oiler TEIYO MARU refuels I-2

11 June 1942:
Departs Yokosuka for the Aleutians in company of I-1, I-3, I-4 and I-7 on her third war patrol.

20 June 1942:
Joins the K patrol line with I-1 and I-3, patrolling along 178W longitude, 48 to 50N latitude until 3 July.

24 June 1943:
TEIYO MARU refuels I-2.

17 July 1942:
100 miles S of Dutch Harbor, Aleutians. I-2 shells an unidentified Soviet merchant and a tanker, but is driven off by a USN PBY "Catalina" flying boat.

20 July 1942:
I-2 is reassigned to the Advance Unit. On the same day she receives an order to depart her patrol area for Yokosuka.

1 August 1942:
Returns to Yokosuka for repairs.

7 August 1942: American Operation "Watchtower" - The Invasion of Guadalcanal, British Solomon Islands:
Rear Admiral (later Admiral) Richmond K. Turner's Amphibious Task Force 62, covered by Vice Admiral (later Admiral) Frank J. Fletcher's Task Force 61 and Rear Admiral (later Admiral) John S. McCain's Task Force 63's land-based aircraft, lands Maj Gen (later Gen/Commandant) Alexander A. Vandegrift's 1st Marine Division on Guadalcanal opening a seven-month campaign to take the island.

8 September 1942:
At 1200, departs Yokosuka for Truk with I-1, I-3, I-4 and I-5.

15 September 1942:
Arrives at Truk.

17 September 1942:
Departs Truk for Shortland.

24 September 1942:
Reassigned to the Outer South Seas Force (Eighth Fleet) with I-1 and I-3.

26 September 1942:
Arrives at Shortland. The skippers of I-2 and I-3 participate in a staff conference researching ways to transport heavy artillery to IJA units on Guadalcanal. By that time destroyers AMAGIRI and AYANAMI have delivered four Daihatsu landing barges, each loaded with a Type 88 75-mm AA gun, an artillery tractor and several Type 96 150-mm infantry mortars.

27 September 1942:
At 0330, departs Shortland for a supply run to Guadalcanal with I-3, towing a Daihatsu landing barge loaded with a gun, an artillery tractor and infantry mortars.

5 October 1942:
Participates in the second supply run to Guadalcanal, towing a Daihatsu barge.

6 October 1942:
Diverted to Bycee Island, Solomons. Arrives at 0500, unloads her barge, then departs.

7 October 1942:
Participates in the third supply run to Guadalcanal.

9 October 1942:
Participates in the fourth supply run to Guadalcanal, towing a Daihatsu barge.

10 October 1942:
I-2 is reassigned to the Advance Unit.

11 October 1942: The Battle of Cape Esperance:
Rear Admiral Goto Aritomo's (former CO of MUTSU) CruDiv 6: AOBA (F), FURUTAKA and KINUGASA and DesDiv 11's FUBUKI and HATSUYUKI steam down the "Slot" at 30 knots. Goto's mission is to provide cover for troop reinforcement transports by shelling Henderson Field.

Rear Admiral Norman Scott's Task Force 64: (F) SAN FRANSCISCO (CA-38), SALT LAKE CITY (CA-25), light cruisers BOISE (CL-47), HELENA (CL-50) and five destroyers cross ahead of Goto's CruDiv 6 and opens fire. American gunfire sinks FUBUKI and damages FURUTAKA, AOBA and HATSUYUKI. Rear Admiral Goto is killed on the bridge of the AOBA. BOISE, SALT LAKE CITY, DUNCAN (DD-485) and FARENHOLT (DD-491) are damaged in the engagement.

After sundown, I-2 arrives at Kamimbo Bay and unloads her cargo, then departs to patrol W of Guadalcanal. Soon thereafter I-2 develops a clutch problem and her air conditioning plant breaks down.

12 October 1942:
Savo Strait. About 2100, LtCdr Inada sights an unidentified "cruiser " and unsuccessfully attempts to attain a firing position. 15 miles W of Savo, LtCdr Inada sights an empty lifeboat and a drifting seaplane float. [3]

Captain (later Rear Admiral) Araki Tsutau's FURUTAKA sinks. DesDiv 11's MURAKUMO and SHIRAYUKI rescue survivors including Araki. A salvage party from the McCALLA (DD-488) attempts to assist damaged USS DUNCAN (DD-485). Despite McCALLA's efforts, DUNCAN sinks.

3 November 1942:
Returns to Truk. Undergoes a makeshift repair aided by personnel from URAKAMI and HIE MARUs.

15 November 1942:
Reassigned to the B Patrol Unit.

16 November 1942:
Truk. Vice Admiral Komatsu convenes a meeting of his submarine captains. He announces that his Sixth Fleet (Submarines) has been ordered by Admiral Yamamoto, CINC, Combined Fleet to organize a supply system for the IJA's 17th Army garrison on Guadalcanal.

19 November 1942:
Departs Truk for Rabaul.

22 November 1942:
Arrives at Rabaul, embarks a Daihatsu barge.

24 November 1942:
Departs Rabaul for Shortland.

25 November 1942:
Arrives at Shortland.

27 November 1942:
Departs Shortland for her fifth supply run to Guadalcanal, towing a barge.

29 November 1942:
Arrives at Kamimbo Bay, NW Guadalcanal, unloads most of her cargo. Since the Daihatsu has developed an engine problem en route, it is scuttled. I-2 then departs for Shortland.

2 December 1942:
Returns to Shortland, embarks 20 tons of food and ammunition and 17 passengers (AA gunners and midget submarine maintenance personnel from CHIYODA).

3 December 1942:
At 1630 departs Shortland for her sixth supply run to Guadalcanal.

5 December 1942:
Arrives at Kamimbo Bay after sundown, unloads her cargo, embarks wounded and sick sailors from the naval units at Guadalcanal. Departs at 2300.

7 December 1942:
Returns to Shortland.

9 December 1942:
Departs Shortland for her seventh supply run to Guadalcanal.

11 December 1942:
Following the loss of I-3 the submarine supply runs to Guadalcanal are temporarily stopped.

13 December 1942:
Returns to Shortland, having aborted her mission. I-2 is temporarily appointed the flagship of his division.

14 December 1942:
Departs Shortland for Truk with ComSubDiv 7 Capt Tamaki Tomejiro aboard. At 1321 (K), the surfaced I-2 is sighted by LtCdr Marvin G. Kennedy’s USS WAHOO (SS-238) off Shortland, in position 06-30S, 156-09E. From the distance of 3,000 yds Kennedy observes a large Japanese flag and the alphanumeric "I 2" painted on the side of the conning tower. [4]

At 1328, WAHOO fires a divergent spread of three torpedoes set to 10 ft at the target making 12 kts from an estimated distance of 800 yds. Despite poor visibility and frequent rain squalls, 37 seconds later a hit is observed about 20 ft forward of I-2’s conning tower. Two and a half minutes later the sound operator reports hearing breaking-up noises. [5]

I-2 is first alerted about the attack by two heavy explosions (probably torpedoes exploding prematurely) and crash-dives immediately without receiving any damage. Somewhat later a third explosion is heard. In his report Cdr Inada concludes that his boat was probably attacked by an aircraft.

17 December 1942:
Returns to Truk.

16 January 1943:
Departs Truk for Rabaul.

20 January 1943:
Arrives at Rabaul.

22 January 1943:
Departs Rabaul for her eighth supply run to Guadalcanal, carrying a Daihatsu barge.

26 January 1943:
Arrives at Kamimbo. Finding the area heavily patrolled by Allied aircraft and PT-boats, Cdr Inada decides to postpone unloading his cargo until 27th.

27 January 1943:
After sundown I-2 surfaces off Kamimbo and contacts the local garrison. The submarine manages to unload 15 tons of cargo, but is then detected by two torpedo boats and forced underwater. Departs Kamimbo for Rabaul.

29 January 1943:
Reassigned to the A Patrol Unit.

31 January 1943: Operation "KE" - The Evacuation of Guadalcanal:
A task force of units of the Second and Third Fleets from Truk including carriers ZUIKAKU, ZUIHO, JUNYO, Bat Div 3's KONGO and HARUNA, CruDiv 4's ATAGO and TAKAO, CruDiv 5's HAGURO and MYOKO, DesRon 4's light cruiser NAGARA, DesRon 10's light cruiser AGANO and destroyers steams north of the Solomons as a feint to cover Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Hashimoto Shintaro's (former CO of HYUGA) evacuation force of destroyers from Rabaul.

I-2 returns to Rabaul.

7 February 1943:
Reassigned to the B Patrol Unit.

9 February 1943:
Departs Rabaul for Shortland. Operation KE is completed. The Japanese successfully evacuate 11,700 troops from Guadalcanal.

11 February 1943:
Arrives at Shortland, departs on the same day with I-1’s Torpedo officer Lt Koreeda Sadayoshi aboard to destroy her wreck.

13 February 1943:
After sundown, I-2 penetrates Kamimbo Bay, closing to within 1,100 yards from the coast, but fails to locate the wreck in the dark.

15 February 1943:
That night, I-2 returns to Kamimbo Bay and closes to within 1.4 miles from the coast, but is depth-charged by torpedo boats and finally chased away by an aircraft after 1120. [6]

18 February 1943:
Arrives at Shortland, departs for Truk on the same day.

23 February 1943:
Arrives at Truk.

26 February 1943:
Departs Truk for Yokosuka.

5 March 1943:
Arrives at Yokosuka for repairs.

16 March 1943:
LtCdr (later Vice Admiral, JMSDF) Morinaga Masahiko (59)(former CO of RO-34 and I-159) assumes temporary command. Cdr Inada is later reassigned to command I-21.

1 April 1943:
SubDiv 7 is reassigned to the Fifth Fleet.

15 April 1943:
Lt Itakura Mitsuma (61)(former CO of I-176) assumes command.

11 May 1943: American Operation "Sandcrab"- The Invasion of Attu, Aleutians:
Rear Admiral (later Admiral) Thomas C. Kinkaid's Task Force 16, covered by Rear Admiral Francis W. Rockwell's Task Force 51, lands the Army's Seventh Division that captures Attu Island, Aleutians.

21 May 1943: Operation "KE" - The Evacuation of Kiska:
The Imperial General Headquarters decides to evacuate the garrison at Kiska Island, Aleutians.

22 May 1943:
At 1430, departs Yokosuka for the Aleutians.

26 May 1943:
The evacuation from Kiska begins via submarines to Paramushiro Island, Kuriles.

27 May 1943:
At 0407 arrives at Paramushiro.

30 May 1943:
At 0800 departs Paramushiro for her first supply run to Kiska, carrying 250 cases of ammunition.

1 June 1943:
Lt Itakura is promoted LtCdr.

3 June 1943:
At 2220, arrives at Kiska, unloads her cargo. Embarks 42 passengers (including 18 sailors) and the ashes of 13 men, departs on 4 June at 0055.

8 June 1943:
At 1955 returns to Kataoka Bay, Paramushiro.

11 June 1943:
At 1400, departs Paramushiro for her second supply run to Kiska, carrying AA ammunition, mail and 6 tons of food.

16 June 1943:
Around 1300, when the surfaced I-2 is heading N at 12 knots in dense fog, having lost the bearings since her departure, she is nearly grounded on Buldir Reef. [7]

17 June 1943:
5 miles SW of Kiska. Around 0915, the surfaced I-2 is suddenly targeted by a radar-equipped surface ship, receiving one dud shell hit to port boat storage space. I-2 crash-dives, but is chased for the next seven hours. A minor leak develops in the engine room, but is quickly checked. At 2005, she arrives at Kiska and unloads her cargo, then embarks 40 passengers, including some personnel of the 452nd NAG and 31 sailors; departs at 2045.

22 June 1943:
At 0615, returns to Kataoka Bay, Paramushiro.

29 June 1943:
At 1600, departs Paramushiro to participate in Operation KE (the evacuation of Kiska) in company of RO-104 and RO-105. I-2 acts as weather ship in the area 5-10 miles N of Adak.

5 July 1943:
At 0345, when I-2 is entering Amchitka Pass, she is targeted by a surface ship and later chased by 18 hours, evading two depth-charge attacks.

10 July 1943:
Arrives to her assigned patrol area, transmits the first weather report.

13 July 1943:
After sundown, when I-2 is charging batteries, she is attacked by a plane, but manages to dive and evades damage.

15 July 1943:
Following the completion of her mission, I-2 departs the area N of Adak and commences her fourth war patrol.

22 July 1943:
LtCdr Itakura receives a message about Rear Admiral Robert C. "Ike" Giffen’s TG 16.21 bombardment of Kiska. I-2 attempts to intercept that force; at one point her skipper sights two green flares and his sound operator reports multiple crew noises, but fog prevents getting a visual contact with the ships.

24 July 1943:
Arrives to the area NE of Amchitka, joins the D patrol line with I-21 on the 25th.

28 July 1943: Operation KE:
The Japanese complete the evacuation of Kiska.

At 2025, I-2 receives anorder to shell Constantine airfield on Amchitka Island, but fails to locate it in dense fog and aborts the mission.

29 July 1943:
At 2400 LtCdr Itakura receives the order to return to Paramushiro.

4 August 1943:
Returns to Kataoka Bay, Paramushiro.

6 August 1943:
Departs Paramushiro for Yokosuka.

11 August 1943:
Returns to Yokosuka for repairs.

10 September 1943:
During a transfer in Yokosuka Bay, I-2 collides with a breakwater at Yoshikura and receives minor damage.

9 October 1943:
I-2 departs Yokosuka for the Aleutians.

14 October 1943:
Arrives at Paramushiro.

15 October 1943:
Departs Paramushiro to raid US communications W of Aleutians.

14 November 1943:
Off Amchitka Pass, Aleutians. I-2 torpedoes and claims sinking an unidentified transport. This is the first instance when an IJN submarine uses Type 92 electric torpedoes with magnetic exploders.

1 December 1943:
Returns to Yokosuka for repairs. Probably at that time an E27/Type 3 radar detector is installed.

20 December 1943:
Yokosuka. LtCdr Yamaguchi Kazuo (61)(former CO of I-154, RO-67) assumes command. LtCdr Itakura is reassigned as CO of I-41.

1 February 1944:
SubDiv 7 is directly attached to Sixth Fleet HQ.

10 March 1944:
Departs Yokosuka for Truk to support the supply operations in New Guinea area while based at Truk.

19 March 1944:
Arrives at Truk. Subchaser CH-20 and FUYO MARU escort I-2 and I-38 into the lagoon.

26 March 1944:
Departs Truk for her first supply run to Kimbe Bay, New Britain.

2 April 1944:
Arrives at Kimbe Bay, unloads her cargo, departs on the same day.

4 April 1944:
Arrives at Rabaul, departs for Truk on that same day. I-2 is scheduled to arrive by 11 April.

7 April 1944:
Bismarck Sea, 50 miles WNW of New Hanover. At 0630, LtCdr D.E. Cochrane’s USS SAUFLEY (DD-465), on patrol in the Emirau-Massau area, gains sonar contact on a submerged submarine. At 0645 she drops a pattern of 9 depth charges, followed by 9 more half hour later. Her soundman reports two underwater explosions. By 0723, oil covers the area. I-2 sinks at 02-17S, 149-14E. LtCdr Yamaguchi and all 110 hands are KIA. [8]

4 May 1944:
I-2 is presumed lost off New Ireland.

10 June 1944:
Removed from the Navy List.


Authors Note:
[1] Rohwer and others have credited I-2 with the sinking of Dutch PARIGI. In reality, she was intercepted and sunk by IJN destroyers ARASHI and NOWAKI.

[2] I-2's target was probably the Dutch merchant GENERAAL VERSPIJCK.

[3] The "cruiser” sighted by I-2 may have been USS McCALLA (DD-488) rescuing survivors after the battle. Several sources credit I-2 attacking McCALLA that day, but this is not substantiated by Japanese records.

[4] Lt Richard H. O’Kane (later Rear Admiral, MOH), then a member of tracking party, identified the same submarine as I-15. A recent theory suggests that WAHOO’s target could have been I-22, even though the latter had been lost earlier.

[5] USS WAHOO was credited with sinking 1,955-ton submarine I-2, but postwar that victory was discredited by the JANAC (Joint Army-Navy Assessment Committee).

[6] A 1993 British history of ULTRA operations assures that I-2 was damaged heavily enough to return to Shortland surfaced. This mistake seems to go back to a mistranslation that confuses the identities of the attackers and their target.

[7] Samuel E. Morison's "History of United States Naval Operations in World War II. Aleutians, Gilberts and Marshalls" suggests that I-2 and I-157 were, in fact, grounded off Kiska at that time and "returned without accomplishing their missions,” but this is not confirmed by SubDiv 7's War Diary. A detailed clarification about that incident can be found in postwar memoirs of I-2’s former CO.

[8] USS SAUFLEY sank another IJN submarine (RO-101) in September 1943.

Thanks for help with COs goes to Matthew Jones. Thanks also go to Steve Eckart of Australia, Jan "Visje” Visser of the Netherlands and Dr. Higuchi Tatsuhiro of Japan. Thanks also go to Rob Stuart of Canada for additional info about CHILKA and Captain Bird.

– Bob Hackett and Sander Kingsepp