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

IJN IJN Salvage and Repair Tug OJIMA:
Tabular Record of Movement

© 2008-2010 Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall

Revision 1

E 1940:
Maizuru Navy Yard. Laid down as an 800-ton TATEGAMI-class fleet salvage and repair tug.

Launched and named OJIMA.

Completed and registered in the IJN. That same year, OJIMA’s two 13.2-mm machine guns are replaced by two Type 96 25-mm AA guns.

4 May 1942: Operation “MO” – The Invasion of Tulagi and Port Moresby:
OJIMA departs Rabaul in Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Abe Koso's (former CO of HIEI) Transport Force of five Navy, six Army transports, tankers GOYO and HOYO MARU, fleet oiler IRO (at anchor at Shortland area with destroyer UZUKI), minelayer TSUGARU, minesweeper W-20 and auxiliary minesweepers HAGOROMO MARU, NOSHIRO MARU No. 2 and FUMI MARU No. 2.

The Transport Force is covered by Rear Admiral (Vice Admiral, posthumously) Kajioka Sadamichi's (former CO of NAGARA) Port Moresby Attack Force of DesRon 6’s light cruiser YUBARI and destroyers OITE, ASANAGI, MUTSUKI and YAYOI with an unidentified patrol boat. The Transport Force steams towards Jomard Pass in the Louisiade Archipelago.

9 May 1942:
After the Battle of Coral Sea, the Attack Force returns to Rabaul.

18 January 1943:
Truk. OJIMA tows oiler SANYO MARU from off Uman Island to Dublon Island's No.2 Buoy.

17 February 1943:
New Guinea. OJIMA departs Wewak assisting destroyer HARUSAME, torpedoed on 24 Jan '43 by LtCdr Dudley W. Morton's USS WAHOO (SS-238), under tow alternately by destroyers AMATSUKAZE and URAKAZE.

23 February 1943:
Arrives at Truk. Repair ship AKASHI carries out emergency repairs and fits a false bow on HARUSAME.

7 October 1943:
Eten Island, Truk Lagoon. Ammunition supply ship ship KIKUKAWA MARU catches fire while at anchor in the 4th Fleet Anchorage. OJIMA is dispatched to assist and ties up alongside. When the fire reaches KIKUKAWA MARU’s aft holds' cargo of fuel, a huge explosion occurs that sinks both ships. OJIMA is blown apart in two pieces and sinks with a great loss of life. She comes to rest on her starboard side in 120 feet of water.

Removed from the Navy List.

Authors' Notes:
[1] No data were found for OJIMA's movements during Jun '42 to Dec '42. Readers with access to any such data are requested to post the information on the Discussion and Questions board or's IJN Ship Message Board

- Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall.

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