(A Wartime Standard Type 1TM tanker)

Tabular Record of Movement

© 2010-2018 Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall.

Revision 2

29 November 1943:
Yokohama. Laid down at Mitsubishi Shipbuilding as a 5,135-ton Wartime Standard Type 1TM tanker for Mitsubishi Kisen (Steam Ship) KK, Tokyo.

27 February 1944:
Launched and named MARIFU MARU.

29 March 1944:

26 May 1944:
At 1030 while 206 degrees 1 Ri off Ichiye Saki while sailing alone MARIFU MARU sights an enemy submarine periscope. In response to her radio signals destroyer SAWAKAZE is despatched to assist.

3 June 1944:
MARIFU MARU departs Imari Bay for Miri, Borneo in convoy MI-05 consisting of fleet oiler NOTORO and tankers TACHIBANA, NITTETSU, TOA, CERAM, SANKO (YAMAKO), AYAKIRI, AYANAMI, OEI, TOKUWA, TAKETSU (BUTSU) and YAMAMIZU MARU No. 2 and KENEI, HINAGA, NIPPO, FUYUKAWA, SURAKARUTA, TATSUJU and SHOEI (2764 gt) MARUs plus thirteen other unidentified ships escorted by kaibokan CD-18, torpedo boat SAGI, patrol boat PB-38, minesweeper W-17 and four unidentified escorts.

8 June 1944:
Arrives at Keelung.

9 June 1944:
Departs Keelung.

10 June 1944:
At Takao SAGI, PB-38 and CD-18 detach.

11 June 1944:
Convoy MI-05 is joined by cargo ships/transports ARIMASAN, MANILA, MIIKESAN and USSURI MARUs and tankers SAN DIEGO MARU and KYOEI No. 8 and JINEI MARU from Takao. Minelayer MAESHIMA and auxiliary subchaser CHa-95 join the escort. TOA and SHOEI (2764 gt) MARUs are detached. At 0945, SAGI and CD-18 join the convoy escort and at 1025, PB-38 joins the convoy escort.

13 June 1944:
At 1551, Cdr John D. Crowley's (USNA ’34) USS FLIER (SS-250) fires four torpedoes and gets two hits that damage MARIFU MARU severely at 15-57N, 119-42E. Casualties are unknown. At 1553, PB-38 drops 31 depth charges and at 1556, W-17 drops 19 depth charges. At 1600, MARIFU MARU is taken in tow by MIIKESAN MARU with SAGI and PB-38 as escorts. The ships are detached from the convoy and later arrive at Cavite Navy Yard, Manila Bay. [1]

18 July 1944:
After further damage by storm. MARIFU MARU is deemed a constructive total loss.

5 September 1944:
MARIFU MARU's Captain Nakajima and 26 men are assigned to 1TM tanker PALEMBANG MARU damaged off Borneo by a mine on 26 May '44 and undergoing repairs at Singapore. Captain Nakajima is appointed as the new captain of PALEMBANG MARU.

6 November 1944:
Mariveles harbor, southern tip of Bataan Peninsula. Carrier planes USS TICONDEROGA (CV-14) Vice Admiral (Admiral posthumously) John S. McCain’s (USNA ’06) Task Group 38.3 bomb and sink damaged MARIFU MARU at 14-26N, 120-29E.

Authors' Notes:
[1] USS FLIER, while transiting the Balabac Strait, Philippines, on 13 August 1944 struck a mine and sank. Fourteen of 86 crewmen escaped, but only eight survived the long swim in the Sulu Sea to shore. After making their way by raft to Palawan, at the end of the month they were evacuated by USS REDFIN (SS-272). In the spring of 2009, a dive team from YAP Films located the wreckage of the submarine at a depth of 330 feet. On 1 February 2010, the USN confirmed that the submarine is USS FLIER.

Thanks go to Erich Muehlthaler of Germany for info about PALEMBANG MARU and to Mr. Gilbert Casse of France.

- Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall.

Back to the Oilers Page