YUSOSEN!



(Oiler by Takeshi Yuki scanned from "Color Paintings of Japanese Warships")

IJN KYUEI MARU:

Tabular Record of Movement

2007-2015 Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall.

Revision 3


20 November 1942:
Kobe. Laid down by Kawasaki as a 10,171-ton 1TL Standard Tanker for Nitto Kisen K. K., Higata.

3 June 1943:
Launched and named KYUEI MARU.

6 September 1943:
Completed. Civilian Captain Umehara Keisei is appointed Commander.

25 September 1943:
At 1200, KYUEI MARU departs Moji for Singapore in convoy HI-11 also consisting of tanker ITSUKUSHIMA MARU, transport (ex-seaplane tender) KAGU MARU and two unidentified ships escorted by kaibokan ETOROFU. [1]

29 September 1943:
At 0800, arrives at Takao and departs that day at 1835.

4 October 1943:
At 1835, arrives at Singapore.

12 October 1943:
KYUEI MARU departs Singapore in convoy No. 627 also consisting of two unidentified merchant ships escorted by subchaser CH-19.

14 October 1943:
LtCdr Earl C. Hawk's (USNA 28) Fremantle-based USS POMPON (SS-267) fires four Mark 14-3A torpedoes at KYUEI MARU at 06-00N, 104-10E. Two torpedoes hit, but fail to explode.

15 October 1943:
Requistioned by the IJN and registered as a specially installed transport ship (oil supply) in the Kure Naval District, (Otsu) category under internal order No. 2169.

16 October 1943:
Arrives at St Jacques, Indochina.

28 October 1943
Departs St Jacques in convoy No. 437 also consisting of MANSHU, KYOKUZAN MARUs and ten unidentified merchant ships escorted by kaibokan WAKAMIYA.

29 October 1943:
Arrives at Camranh Bay, Indochina.

3 November 1943:
Departs St Jacques in convoy No. 437 also consisting of twelve unidentified merchant ships escorted by kaibokan WAKAMIYA.

5 November 1943:
Arrives at Takao.

11 November 1943:
Departs Takao in convoy No. 218 also consisting of MANSHU MARU, HINO MARU No.1 and two unidentified merchant ships escorted by destroyer ASAKAZE.

17 November 1943:
Arrives at Moji. Later, sails to Tokuyama to discharge.

24 November 1943:
Reserve Captain Shibata Chokichi is appointed Supervisor. Departs Tokuyama.

25 November 1943:
Arrives at Kobe.

26 November 1943:
Enters Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Kobe Shipyard for repairs.

E December 1943:
Civilian Captain Shibata Chokichi is appointed Commander.

5 December 1943
Departs Kobe and later that day arrives Innoshima.

13 December 1943:
Departs Innoshima.

14 December 1943:
Arrives at Kure.

17 December 1943:
Departs Kure and later that day arrives at Moji.

21 December 1943:
Departs Moji in convoy HI-27 consisting of oilers KYUEI and OTORISAN MARUs transport KUNIKAWA MARU, cargo-passenger liners MIIKE and TSUKUSHI MARUs, cargo liner NOTO MARU and IJA landing craft depot ship MAYASAN MARU escorted by destroyer ASAKAZE. NOTO MARU carries the 72nd Field AA Battalion, 14th Shipping Eng Regiment and she and the convoy also carry the 1st echelon of the 53rd Division consisting of Div Hq, 53rd Div, 128th Infantry Regiment and div troops (including comms, transportation, veterinary, supply, maintenance etc.), 234th Naval Construction Unit, 43rd Independent Field AAA Company, 46th Field Ops Machine Cannon Company, 47th Field Ops Machine Cannon Company and 12th Independent Searchlight Company.

24 December 1943:
Arrives at Takao, Formosa.

26 December 1943:
HI-27 departs Takao for Singapore with a replacement escort, kaibokan MATSUWA. The convoy now consists of KYUEI, OTORISAN, KUNIKAWA and TSUKUSHI MARUs. The others remain at Takao.

27 December 1943:
162 miles WSW of Takao. At about 1100, in the second of two submerged attacks, LtCdr (later Captain) Robert D. Risser's (USNA 34) FLYING FISH (SS-229) torpedoes and sinks KYUEI MARU at 21-25N, 118-05E. 54 crewmen are KIA. MATSUWA rescues 8 survivors. The other ships continue their voyage.

5 February 1944:
Removed from the Navy List under internal order No. 305.


Authors' Note:
[1] KYUEI MARU either made this voyage under civilian control or possibly under charter to the IJN.

Thanks to Gilbert Casse of France and Matthew Jones of Mississippi, USA.

- Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall.


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