YUSOSEN!

(Oiler by Takeshi Yuki)

IJN JINEI MARU:
Tabular Record of Movement

© 2008-2013 Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall.


13 January 1944:
Nagasaki. Laid down by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries as a 10,241-ton Standard Merchant Tanker 2TL for Nitto Shosen K. K. Merchant Marine Co., Ltd., Tokyo.

10 March 1944:
Launched and named JINEI MARU.

31 March 1944:
Completed. Undergoes conversion to an oiler.

3 May 1944:
At 0445, JINEI MARU departs Moji in convoy HI-61 consisting of empty tankers TATEKAWA, NICHIEI, AZUSA, EIYO, AKANE, OTORISAN, SARAWAK and ASANAGI MARUs, fleet oiler HAYASUI and passenger cargo ship MIZUHO MARU escorted by escort carrier TAIYO, destroyers ASAGAO, HIBIKI and INAZUMA and kaibokan SADO, KURAHASHI, CD-5, CD-7 and CD-13.

7 May 1944:
JINEI MARU is detached because of engine trouble.

4 June 1944:
Off Formosa. JINEI MARU joins convoy HI-65 consisting of fleet oiler SHIRETOKO and tankers OMUROSAN, ITSUKUSHIMA, ZUIHO, TOHO MARUs and transports/cargo liners MANILA, KASHI and TATSUWA MARUs escorted by escort carrier KAIYO, kaibokan CD-11, CD-19 and subchaser CH-60.

E 5 June 1944:
Arrives at Takao. JINEI MARU is detached.

11 June 1944:
JINEI MARU departs Takao with tankers SAN DIEGO MARU and KYOEI MARU No. 8 and cargo ships/transports ARIMASAN, MANILA, MIIKESAN and USSURI MARUs and joins convoy MI-05 bound for Miri, Borneo.

Convoy MI-05 consists of fleet oiler NOTORO and tankers TACHIBANA, NITTETSU, CERAM, SANKO (YAMAKO), AYAKIRI, AYANAMI, OEI, MARIFU, TOKUWA, TAKETSU (BUTSU), MARIFU and YAMAMIZU MARU No. 2 and KENEI, HINAGA, NIPPO, FUYUKAWA, SURAKARUTA and TATSUJU MARU plus thirteen unidentified ships escorted by kaibokan CD-18, torpedo boat SAGI, patrol boat PB-38, minesweeper W-17, minelayer MAESHIMA, auxiliary subchaser CHa-95 and four unidentified escorts.

13 June 1944:
LtCdr John D. Crowley's USS FLIER (SS-250) torpedoes and damages MARIFU MARU at 15-57N, 119-42E. She is taken in tow by MIIKESAN MARU.

15 June 1944:
The convoy arrives Manila. Damaged MARIFU MARU arrives later and is detached.

18 June 1944:
JINEI MARU departs Manila in convoy MI-05 now consisting of fleet oiler NOTORO, tankers TACHIBANA, SAN DIEGO, BAIEI, KENZUI, ATAGO, AYANAMI, CERAM, OEI and TOKUWA MARUs, YAMAMIZU MARU No. 2, and KYOEI MARU No. 8 and cargo/transports ARIMASAN, HINAGA, NIPPO (ex-Chinese NINGPO), TATSUJU, SURAKARUTA, TEIFU, ROKKO, DAIZEN, MIIKESAN, NICHIYO, HIDA and SEIWA MARUs with the same escorts.

23 June 1944:
At 1257, arrives at Miri.

25 June 1944:
At 1915, JINEI MARU departs Miri for Singapore in convoy MISHI-03 consisting of fleet oiler NOTORO and SAN DIEGO, NICHIYO, HIDA, FUYUKAWA, AYANAMI, KYOEI No. 8, BAIEI, NIPPO, DAIZEN, TEIFU (ex-BOUGAINVILLE), SEIWA, SURAKARTA, HINAGA, MANILA, ARIMASAN, ROKKO, TATSUTAMA (ex-American SS Admiral Y. S. WILLIAMS), TOA and KENZUI MARUs escorted by kaibokan CD-18, torpedo boat SAGI, subchaser CH-21, minesweeper W-17 and auxiliary minesweepers CHOUN MARU No. 6 and TOSHI MARU No. 2.

28 June 1944:
South China Sea, off Singapore. At 2100, Cdr (later Rear Admiral) Rueben T. Whitaker’s USS FLASHER’s (SS-249) radar picks up the convoy. Whitaker, operating in relatively shallow water (150 feet), decides to wait until after the moon sets to make a surface attack on the convoy’s two largest ships.

29 June 1944:
At 0111, Whitaker torpedoes freighter NIPPO MARU. Then he torpedoes NOTORO. At 0117, two or three torpedoes hit NIPPO MARU and two or three torpedoes hit NOTORO. NIPPO MARU breaks in two and sinks by the bow. NOTORO remains afloat, but goes dead in the water. The escorts begin blindly dropping depth charges. Whitaker, still on the surface, leaves the area on four engines.

30 June 1944:
Arrives at Singapore.

20 October 1944: Operation SHO-I-GO ("Victory") – The Battle of Leyte Gulf:
JINEI MARU and oiler TAKANE MARU are assigned to Vice Admiral Ozawa Jisaburo's (former CO of HARUNA) Northern "decoy" Mobile Force’s Second Supply Force. They depart Yashima anchorage escorted by kaibokan CD-22, CD-29, CD-31, CD-33, CD-43 and CD-132. The Supply Force supports Ozawa's CarDiv 3's ZUIKAKU, ZUIHO, CHITOSE and CHIYODA and CarDiv 4's hybrid HYUGA and ISE.

TAKANE MARU and kaibokan CD-33 and CD-43 are detached for Tokuyama Navy Fuel Depot. TAKANE MARU takes on a load of fuel for Ozawa's Mobile Force.

21 October 1944:
TAKANE MARU and kaibokan CD-33 and CD-43 depart Tokuyama Navy Fuel Depot for Koniya, Kakaroma-Jima, Ryukyus.

22 October 1944:
JINEI MARU refuels Ozawa's force at sea. Sound contact is made with a submarine. At 2010, ZUIKAKU and light cruiser TAMA spot torpedo tracks and make a sharp turn to port. Ozawa is forced to cancel the refueling after receiving only one third of the required amount.

24 October 1944:
Destroyer AKIKAZE departs Kure to rendezvous at sea with the Second Supply Force and its escorts at a position S of Kagoshima, Kyushu.

25 October 1944: – The Battle off Cape Engano:
S of Yaku Jima, Japan. At 0435, LtCdr Orme C. Robbins’ USS STERLET (SS-392) torpedoes and sinks JINEI MARU at 30-15N, 129-45E. Destroyer AKIKAZE helps rescue JINEI MARU's survivors. [1][2]


Authors’ Notes:
[1] Author Cdr John D. Alden notes all 69 crewmen were KIA.

[2] Accounts of JINEI MARU's sinking are varied and inconsistent. The authors are of the opinion that many accounts confuse JINEI MARU's 25 Oct '44 sinking with TAKANE MARU's sinking on 30 Oct '44.

- Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall.


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