ZATSUYOSEN!

(KATORI MARU, prewar)

IJN KATORI MARU:
Tabular Record of Movement

© 2012 Gilbert Casse, Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall


12 October 1937:
Tsurumi. Laid down by Seitetsu Zosen K.K. shipyard for Hinode Kisen K.K. as a cargo ship, part of the Peacetime Standard Ship (D) Type Program.

28 February 1938:
Launched and named KATORI MARU. [1]

31 March 1938:
Completed and registered in Tokyo. Her Gross Registered Tonnage (GRT) is 1,920-tons.

7 May 1939 ~ 7 December 1939:
Chartered to Nippon Suisan K.K.

E 1940:
Her Gross Registered Tonnage (GRT) is changed to 1,933-tons.

28 August 1941:
Requisitioned by the IJN.

1 September 1941:
Osaka. Registered in the IJN as an auxiliary gunboat and attached to the Maizuru Naval District with Maizuru as homeport under internal order No. 1001. Begins her conversion at Naniwa Dock.

5 October 1941:
Undergoes center of gravity test.

6 October 1941:
The conversion is completed.

8 December 1941:
Tactically assigned to Maizuru Guard Force, in Rear Admiral Yoshida Tsunemitsu’s (36) Local Defense Squadron under Maizuru District secret instruction No. 6. Assigned to the following missions under Maizuru secret instruction No. 3: (1) Base protection – (2) ASW warfare.

11 December 1941:
Departs Maizuru.

12 December 1941:
Patrols off Wakasan Wan (Bay).

13 December 1941:
Arrives at Maizuru.

16 December 1941:
Classified as the 3rd platoon, 2nd ship under Maizuru District secret instruction No. 4. Departs Maizuru carrying boats totaling 100-tons and arrives at Kure later in the day.

20 December 1941:
Assigned to local navigation control under Maizuru District secret instruction No. 5.

23 December 1941:
Departs Kure.

24 December 1941:
Arrives at Maizuru.

25 December 1941:
Unloads 9,700-tons of munitions and 18 practice targets.

15 January 1942:
Assignment confirmed in the Maizuru Guard Force under Navy secret instruction No. 80.

20 January 1942:
Departs Maizuru.

21 January 1942:
Undergoes training in Wakasan Wan. Confirmed as the 3rd platoon, 2nd ship under Maizuru District secret instruction No. 7.

22 January 1942:
Arrives at Obama, Oki Retto (Islands).

23 January 1942:
Arrives at Maizuru.

7 February 1942:
Departs Maizuru.

9 February 1942:
Arrives at Maizuru.

24 February 1942:
Departs Maizuru.

25-26 February 1942:
Engaged in training duties.

27 February 1942:
Engaged in anti-aircraft fire drill.

28 February 1942:
Arrives at Maizuru.

16 March 1942:
Departs Maizuru.

17~19 March 1942:
Engaged in training duties in Wakasa Wan.

20 March 1942:
Arrives at Maizuru. That same day assigned to (1) Base protection (2) ASW warfare under Maizuru Naval District instruction No. 9.

8 April 1942:
Departs Maizuru.

9 April 1942:
Arrives at Mano Wan, Niigata Prefecture.

10 April 1942:
Departs Mano Wan.

11 April 1942:
Arrives at Niigata.

13 April 1942:
Departs Niigata.

14 April 1942:
Arrives at Nanao, Ishikawa Prefecture.

17 April 1942:
Departs Nanao.

18 April 1942:
Arrives at Maizuru.

4 May 1942:
Departs Maizuru. Calls at Higashimaizuru ~ steams off Kyogamisaki coast and arrives at Kohama Wan, Shimane Prefecture later in the day.

5 May 1942:
Departs Kohama Wan. Steams off Kyogomisaki coast and arrives in Mikuni area later that same day.

6 May 1942:
Departs Minazuki Wan, Ishikawa Prefecture. That same day assigned to (1) Base protection (2) ASW warfare under Maizuru Naval District instruction No. 13.

7 May 1942:
Stops off Hajiki Zaki, Sado Island. Arrives at Niigata later that day.

9 May 1942:
Departs Niigata.

10 May 1942:
Arrives at Higashimaizuru. Departs later.

11 May 1942:
Arrives at Maizuru.

20 May 1942:
Departs Maizuru for training duties and arrives back later in the day.

22 May 1942:
Departs Maizuru.

23-24 May 1942:
Engaged in ASW warfare training.

25 May 1942:
Arrives at Maizuru. Becomes temporarily flagship in place of auxiliary gunboat SANTO MARU.

1 June 1942:
Departs Maizuru.

4 June 1942:
SANTO MARU replaces KATORI MARU as flagship.

8 June 1942:
Arrives at Maizuru.

10 June 1942:
Becomes temporarily flagship in place of auxiliary gunboat SANTO MARU.

11 June 1942:
SANTO MARU replaces KATORI MARU as flagship.

12 June 1942:
Becomes temporarily flagship in place of auxiliary gunboat SANTO MARU.

19 June 1942:
SANTO MARU replaces KATORI MARU as flagship.

26 June 1942:
Departs Maizuru. Engages in fire drill and returns to Maizuru later that same day.

27 June 1942:
Becomes temporarily flagship in place of auxiliary gunboat SANTO MARU.

2 July 1942:
Auxiliary netlayer KISHIN MARU replaces KATORI MARU as flagship. Departs Maizuru.

3 July 1942:
Arrives at Maizuru.

4 July 1942:
Departs Maizuru.

5 ~ 7 July 1942:
Engages in search mission of the missing destroyer YAMAKAZE. [2]

8 July 1942:
Arrives at Maizuru. Departs later that same day.

9 July 1942:
Arrives at Maizuru.

11 July 1942:
Becomes temporarily flagship in place of auxiliary netlayer KISHIN MARU. Departs Maizuru and returns back later in the day.

17 July 1942:
Auxiliary netlayer KISHIN MARU replaces KATORI MARU as flagship. Enters dock.

20 July 1942:
Attached to 4th Fleet, 6th Base Force, Marshalls area.

22 July 1942:
Undocked. Scheduled to a refit under Navy Instruction 9147.

23 July 1942:
Scheduled to be fitted with three Type 93 13mm MGs under Navy Telegram No. 328.

E August 1942:
Her GRT is changed to 1,923-tons.

4 August 1942:
Departs Maizuru.

11 August 1942:
Arrives at Saipan, Marianas.

13 August 1942:
Departs Saipan.

19 August 1942:
Arrives at Kwajalein, Marshalls.

21 August 1942:
Departs Kwajalein.

22 August 1942:
Arrives at Wotje, Marshalls.

23 August 1942:
Departs Wotje.

24 August 1942:
Arrives at Mili, Marshalls.

25 August 1942:
Departs Mili.

26 August 1942:
Arrives at Jaluit, Marshalls.

30 August 1942:
Departs Jaluit.

2 September 1942:
Arrives at Apamama, Gilberts. Departs later that day for Tarawa, Gilberts.

3 September 1942:
Arrives at Tarawa. Departs that same day for Makin, Gilberts.

4 September 1942:
Arrives at Makin.

9 September 1942:
Departs Makin.

10 September 1942:
Arrives at Jaluit. Transfers later to Emiedj anchorage, Jaluit.

12 September 1942:
Departs Emiedj anchorage.

13 September 1942:
Arrives at Makin.

16 September 1942:
Departs Makin.

18 September 1942:
Arrives at Nauru. Departs later that day for Jaluit.

20 September 1942:
Arrives at Jaluit.

21 September 1942:
Departs Jaluit.

23 September 1942:
Arrives at Tarawa.

24 September 1942:
Departs Tarawa.

26 September 1942:
Arrives at Betio, Tarawa.

October 1942:
Assigned to Jaluit sector Guard Force, Marshalls area.

1 October 1942:
Departs Abaiang Island, Gilberts.

5 October 1942:
Arrives at Maiana, Gilberts and transfers later to Tarawa.

6 October 1942:
Departs Tarawa.

7 October 1942:
Assigned to Kwajalein sector Guard Force, Marshalls area upon arrival at Kwajalein.

9 October 1942:
Arrives at Jaluit.

17 October 1942:
Departs Jaluit.

18 October 1942:
Arrives at Kwajalein.

21 October 1942:
Departs Kwajalein.

22 October 1942:
Arrives at Mili.

28 October 1942:
Assigned to Jaluit sector Guard Force, Marshalls area upon arrival at Jaluit.

29 October 1942:
Departs Mili.

30 October 1942:
Arrives at Jaluit.

20 November 1942:
Departs Jaluit.

21 November 1942:
Arrives at Mili.

25 November 1942:
Departs Mili.

26 November 1942:
Arrives at Jaluit.

5 December 1942:
Departs Jaluit.

6 December 1942:
Arrives at Makin. Departs later in the day for Tarawa.

7 December 1942:
Arrives at Tarawa.

8 December 1942:
Departs Tarawa.

11 December 1942:
Arrives at Kwajalein.

14 December 1942:
Departs Kwajalein.

15 December 1942:
Arrives at Jaluit.

18 December 1942:
Supplied with fresh food and other sundries by auxiliary storeship KITAKAMI MARU.

21 December 1942:
Departs Jaluit.

22 December 1942:
Arrives at Kwajalein.

23 December 1942:
Departs Kwajalein.

24 December 1942:
Arrives at Jaluit.

28 December 1942:
Departs Jaluit.

29 December 1942:
Arrives at Wotje.

31 December 1942:
Departs Wotje.

3 January 1943:
Arrives at Tarawa.

5 January 1943:
Departs Tarawa.

6 January 1943:
Arrives at Emiedj anchorage.

7 January 1943:
Departs Emiedj anchorage.

8 January 1943:
Arrives at Kwajalein.

9 January 1943:
Departs Kwajalein.

10 January 1943:
Arrives at Nauru. Departs later that day for Jaluit.

15 January 1943:
Arrives at Jaluit.

15 February 1943:
Assigned to Jaluit sector First Guard Force, Marshalls. Departs Jaluit.

17 February 1943:
Arrives at Tarawa.

23 February 1943:
Transfers to Makin.

26 February 1943:
Departs Makin.

27 February 1943:
Arrives at Jaluit.

28 February 1943:
Departs Jaluit with auxiliary subchaser SHONAN MARU No. 11 escorting fleet oiler IRO. At about 0900, W of Jaluit, IRO is torpedoed by LtCdr Raymond H. Bass' (USNA 431) USS PLUNGER (SS-179). Hit by one of five torpedoes Bass fires, IRO becomes unnavigable. KATORI MARU tows her to Jaluit with SHONAN MARU No. 11 as escort.

5 March 1943:
Arrives at Kwajalein.

9 March 1943:
Departs Kwajalein.

10 March 1943:
Arrives at Emiedj.

13 March 1943:
Departs Emiedj.

14 March 1943:
Arrives at Jaluit. Transfers later in the day at Emiedj. Supplied with raw food products by auxiliary storeship KITAKAMI MARU and supplies auxiliary subchaser KYO MARU No. 6 with fresh water.

E March 1943:
Departs Emiedj and arrives at Truk, Central Carolines.

21 March 1943:
Departs Truk.

27 March 1943:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

30 March 1943:
Scheduled to be fitted with additional Type 93 13mm MGs under Navy secret instruction No. 1440.

10 April 1943:
Fitted with additional Type 93 13mm MGs.

E April 1943:
Departs Yokosuka and arrives at Jaluit. Departs Jaluit later.

15 April 1943:
Supplies auxiliary subchaser KYO MARU No. 6 with fresh water.

E April-May 1943:
Arrives at Jabot, Marshalls.

6 May 1943:
Departs Jabot.

7 May 1943:
Arrives at Kwajalein.

8 May 1943:
Departs Kwajalein.

9 May 1943:
Arrives at Taroa, Marshalls. Departs later in the day for Wotje.

10 May 1943:
At 0300, arrives at Wotje.

11 May 1943:
Departs Wotje.

13 May 1943:
Arrives at Makin.

21 May 1943:
Departs Makin and arrives at Tarawa that same day.

23 May 1943:
Departs Tarawa and arrives later in the day at Makin.

25 May 1943:
Departs Makin.

26 May 1943:
Arrives at Jabot.

E May-June 1943:
Departs Jabot and arrives at Emiedj anchorage.

5 June 1943:
Departs Emiedj anchorage.

6 June 1943:
Arrives at Kwajalein. Transfers later to Roi-Namur, Marshalls.

8 June 1943:
Departs Roi-Namur.

9 June 1943:
Arrives at Taroa.

10 June 1943:
Departs Taroa.

12 June 1943:
Arrives at Tarawa.

13 June 1943:
Departs Tarawa.

15 June 1943:
Arrives at Jaluit.

July-August 1943:
Calls at Jaluit and Emiedj.

26 August 1943:
Departs Emiedj.

27 August 1943:
Arrives at Kwajalein.

E 28~31 August 1943:
Embarks about 230 men, tanks and other equipement of the 21st Independent Mixed Brigade.

1 September 1943:
Departs Kwajalein.

5 September 1943:
Arrives at Wake (renamed Otori-jima after its capture). Unloads equipment and disembarks troops aboard. Departs later that same day for Roi-Namur.

9 September 1943:
Arrives at Roi-Namur. Transfers that same day to Kwajalein.

11 September 1943:
Departs Kwajalein in convoy No. 6113 also consisting of fleet oiler SHIRETOKO, auxiliary transport CHIHAYA (ex-Dutch TJISAROEA) MARU, auxiliary aircraft transport FUJIKAWA MARUs and possibly others escorted by subchaser CH-31, auxiliary subchaser CHa46 and possibly subchaser CH-16.

12 September 1943:
Alerted by an Ultra signal, LtCdr (later Cdr) Carter L. Bennett's (USNA ’33) USS PERMIT (SS-178) intercepts the convoy. Bennett sets up and fires six torpedoes at three ships in submerged night attacks. He hits and damages FUJIKAWA MARU at 08-33N, 165-12E. Later, she is towed back to Kwajalein by CHIHAYA MARU. Soon after, in a second attack, USS PERMIT gets two hits on SHIRETOKO. That same day, light cruiser NAKA departs Truk to assist the torpedoed ships.

13 September 1943:
In the morning, Bennett continues his attack on the convoy. He fires three torpedoes at SHIRETOKO and claims three hits. Bennett last sees her low in the water. Later, she is taken in tow by KATORI MARU.

15 September 1943:
At 1300, USN codebreakers intercept and decrypt a message from ComCruDiv14 that reads: "NAKA, subchaser 31, Minesweeper 16, [auxiliary] subchaser 46, KATORI MARU arrived Roi, (escorting KATORI MARU towing SHIRETOKO.)”

28 September 1943:
Scheduled to a refit under Navy Confidential Special Instruction No. 4917.

1 October 1943:
Removed from the Gunboat Navy list under internal order No. 2038. Registered that same day in the IJN as an auxiliary transport, (Otsu) category and attached to the Maizuru Naval District with Maizuru as homeport under internal order No. 1336. Tactically assigned to Fourth Fleet under secret instruction No. 592/73, Marshalls Guard Force under instruction No. 12, Jaluit sector Guard Force, under instruction No. 10. [3].

That same day, IJN Captain Nakamura Sasahiko is appointed Commanding Officer (CO) [4] 2 October 1943:
Starts scheduled refit under Navy Confidential Special Instruction No. 4917.

6 October 1943:
Loads 50-tons of boiler water.

8 October 1943:
Provided with 3-tons of boiler water by “ROC No. 14” boat.

14 October 1943:
Departs Kwajalein. Transfers to anchorage between Gehh and Gea Islands.

18 October 1943:
Loads 80-tons of boiler water.

19 October 1943:
Removal of two deck guns located amidships is scheduled under Fourth Fleet Instruction No 26. The guns are to be transferred to auxiliary aircraft transport FUJIKAWA MARU.

20 October 1943:
Attached to 6th Base Force, transport unit under Navy secret instruction No. 417.

21 October 1943:
Comes alongside FUJIKAWA MARU. KATORI MARU’s No. 2 and No. 3 deck guns are started to be dismantled and loaded aboard FUJIKAWA MARU. That same day, loads 50-tons of boiler water.

23 October 1943:
The gun dismantling is completed. Separates from FUJIKAWA MARU. Departs Gehh-Gea anchorage and arrives at Kwajalein later that same day.

29 October 1943:
Loads 100-tons of coal.

31 October 1943:
At 1000, departs Kwajalein and arrives later that day at Roi-Namur. Comes alongside auxiliary water tanker TATEYAMA MARU to be supplied with 78-tons of boiler water.

1 November 1943:
Watering is completed. Separates from TATEYAMA MARU. That same day embarks 227 personnel of the 22nd Air Transport squadron and their belongings.

2 November 1943:
Departs Roi-Namur in convoy with IJN requisitioned cargo ship (B-AK) RYUZAN MARU and auxiliary transport PARAN (ex Philippine PALAWAN) MARU escorted by Auxiliary minesweeper TAMA MARU No. 3 and auxiliary subchasers No. 21 and TAKUNAN MARU No. 3.

3 November 1943:
Arrives at Maleoelap, Marshalls. Disembarks troops aboard.

4 November 1943:
Unloads troops’ belongings as well as 80 tons coal and 100 tons fresh water.

6 November 1943:
Loads other belongings.

7 November 1943:
Embarks 143 passengers. Departs Maleolap.

8 November 1943:
Arrives at Roi-Namur. Disembarks passengers and some of their belongings.

9 November 1943:
Transfers to Kwajalein. Disembarks belongings. Loads 80-tons of coal and 100-tons of boiler water.

15 November 1943:
Supplies auxiliary subchaser SHONAN MARU No. 5 with 30-tons of fresh water.

17 November 1943:
Loads 53-tons of boiler water.

19 November 1943:
Loads 70-tons of fresh water.

22 November 1943:
Loads 70-tons of coal, 50-tons of boiler water, weapons and ammunition.

28 November 1943:
Comes alongside destroyer HAYANAMI and transfers her weapons and ammunition.

5 December 1943:
Kwajalein, Marshall Islands. Aircraft from Rear Admiral Charles A. Pownall's Task Force 50’s USS YORKTOWN (CV-10), LEXINGTON (CV-16) and light carrier INDEPENDENCE (CVL-22) attack Kwajalein and Wotje Atolls. They damage FUJIKAWA MARU, light cruisers NAGARA and ISUZU, auxiliary and transports EIKO, KINEZAKI and KENBU MARUs and MIKAGE MARU No. 18 and sink collier ASAKAZE MARU, cargo ship TATEYAMA MARU, auxiliary subchaser TAKUNAN MARU No. 7 and guardboat MIKUNI MARU NO. 5.

KATORI MARU is also damaged and expands 18 8cm shells, 730 13mm rounds and 600 7.7mm rounds against the attacking aircraft.

At 0518, starts MGs AA fire. One MG is put out of action. At 0522, a near-miss at her port side stern causes some flooding in the engine room. At 0530, opens fire with her 8cm guns. One gun is put out of action At 0535, a bomb hits starboard amidships and opens a hole 1-meter below waterline causing some flooding. At 0600, stops AA fire. 7 December 1943:
Loads DCs.

9 December 1943:
Transfers to Gehh-Gea anchorage for emergency repairs.

10-11 December 1943:
Loads sandbags.

12 December 1943:
Loads raw food and other sundries.

14 December 1943:
Comes alongside auxiliary gunboat IKUTA MARU and transfers her special shells.

15 December 1943:
Loads fresh water.

25 December 1943:
Loads fresh water. Repairs are completed. Transfers to Kwajalein.

28 December 1943:
Loads coal, fresh water and other sundries.

29 December 1943:
Loads High-angle guns and related equipment. Departs Kwajalein. Later in the day, about 50 nautical miles S of Kwajalein Atoll, KATORI MARU is attacked by enemy aircraft at 08-10N, 167-45E without damage and expands 13 8cm shells, 200 13mm rounds and 150 7.7mm rounds against the attackers between 1028 and 1033.

30 December 1943:
Arrives at Emiedj. Unloads High-angle guns and related equipment. Loads personnel and their belongings and departs later in the day, arriving at Jaluit, inside the atoll.

31 December 1943:
Departs Jaluit atoll.

1 January 1944:
Arrives at Kwajalein. Disembarks personnel and belongings.

February 1944:
Departs Kwajalein.

29 February 1944:
Arrives at Yokosuka. Probably undergoes extensive repairs.

29 May 1944:
At dawn, departs Yokohama in convoy No. 3530 also consisting of IJA transports TAKAOKA, HAVRE (5,821 GRT), SUGIYAMA, KATSUKAWA MARUs, IJN requisitioned cargo/passenger ships (B-APK) or (B-AK) SHINROKU, TAMAHIME, KASHIMASAN, MARUs and two other unidentified ships carrying troops of the 43rd Infantry Division, escorted by kaibokan CH-17, CH-33, CH-50 and torpedo boat OTORI.

4 June 1944:
At 1530, LtCdr (later KIA) Edward N. Blakely's (USNA ’34) USS SHARK (SS-314) (later lost on patrol) torpedoes and sinks KATSUKAWA MARU at 19-45N, 138-15E. The transport is carrying 2,884 soldiers of the IJA's 43rd Infantry Division to bolster Saipan's defenses. 28 troops, 10 guards and 77 crewmen are KIA.

5 June 1944:
At 1645, Blakely torpedoes and sinks TAKAOKA MARU with 3,500 troops aboard at 18-40N, 140-35E. 115 troops and 29 of the crew are killed. Immediately afterwards, Blakely torpedoes and sinks TAMAHIME MARU in the same position. 52 of her crew are killed.

6 June 1944:
At 1000, LtCdr (later Admiral, CINCPACFLT) Bernard A. Clarey's (USNA ’34) USS PINTADO (USS-387) torpedoes and sinks KASHIMASAN MARU loaded with aviation gasoline, ammunition, weapons and boats at 16-28N, 142-16E. 43 of the crew are killed. At 1010, Clarey torpedoes and sinks HAVRE MARU in the same position. Seven out of the 2816 troops aboard and 91 crewmen are KIA.

7 June 1944:
N of Chichi-Jima. At about 2300, LtCdr James B. Grady's USS WHALE (SS-239) makes contact with the convoy traveling in two parallel columns: four freighters in the starboard column and two in the port. They are screened by three escorts. Grady makes a night surface radar attack on the largest ship, transport SUGIYAMA MARU. He fires a three-torpedo spread, then shifts to a second freighter and fires another three-torpedo spread. A hit under the stack of SUGIYAMA MARU at 31-06N, 142-34E is followed by two timed hits on SHINROKU MARU that inflict unknown, if any, damage. Depth charges are dropped immediately. USS WHALE clears the area to the SE. SUGIYAMA MARU escapes the area and is towed back to Yokosuka. Later that day, the remains of convoy No. 3530 consisting of SHINROKU and KATORI MARUs and two unidentified ships and escorts bolstered by kaibokan CD-4, arrive at Saipan. [5]

11 June 1944:
Air raid on Saipan. F6F “Hellcats” from Vice Admiral (later Admiral) Marc A. Mitscher’s (USNA ’10) Task Force 58 attack airfields and shipping. KATORI MARU is not hit.

At 1800, departs Saipan in unnumbered convoy consisting of auxiliary tanker KYOEI MARU, requisitioned cargo ships (B-AK) EDOGAWA and HAGIKAWA MARUs, fleet storeship KINEZAKI and civilian cargo ship (C-AK) NISSHO MARU No. 1 escorted by auxiliary subchaser CHa-67.

21 June 1944:
Arrives at Koniya, Amami-Oshima. Departs later.

22 June 1944:
Arrives at Seso, Kakeroma jima, Amami Gunto.

25 June 1944:
Departs Seso, steaming to the Philippines.

29 June 1944:
About 11 nautical miles NW Caminguin Island, N of Mindanao. Cdr Thomas B. Oakley, Jr’s (USNA ’34) USS GROWLER (SS-215) makes a radar contact. At 0200, Oakley torpedoes and sinks KATORI MARU at 19-00N, 121-42E. 44 crewmen are KIA.

10 August 1944:
Removed from the Navy’s list under internal order No. 949.


Authors Notes:
[1] Not to be confused with IJA transport (2,209 GRT, ’19) or Auxiliary transport (5,385 GRT, ’40).

[2] YAMAKAZE was torpedoed and sunk with all hands (227 men KIA) by USS NAUTILUS (SS-168) on 25 Jun ’42, about 60 miles SE of Yokosuka.

[3] There were two categories of Zatsuyosen. (Ko) category with an IJN Captain as supervisor aboard and (Otsu) category without.

[4] This is an exception to the rules: see [3].

[5] It is unclear exactly when CD-4 became involved in escort of this ravaged convoy.

Thanks go to Gengoro S. Toda of Japan.

Gilbert Casse, Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall


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