SENSUIKAN!

(RO-66)

IJN Submarine RO-68:
Tabular Record of Movement

2001-2017 Bob Hackett & Sander Kingsepp:
Revision 3


6 February 1924:
Kobe. Laid down Mitsubishi Shipbuilding as a 990-ton L4 submarine.

23 February 1925:
Launched and designated RO-68.

1 July 1925:
Lt (later Rear Admiral) Nakamura Motoji (39)(former CO of RO-15) is appointed the Chief Equipping Officer (CEO).

29 October 1925:
Kobe. RO-68 is completed at Mitsubishi Shipbuilding and attached to Maizuru Naval District. Assigned to SubDiv33. Lt (promoted LtCdr 1 December) Nakamura Motoji is the CO.

1 December 1926:
LtCdr (Admiral, posthumously) Takagi Takeo (39) (former CO of RO-28) is appointed the CO.

1 December 1927:
LtCdr (later Rear Admiral) Nabeshima Shunsaku (42) (former gunnery officer of RO-16) is appointed the CO.

10 December 1928:
Placed in reserve at Maizuru. Lt (later Capt) Mizohata Sadaichi (46)(former gunnery officer of RO-65) is appointed the CO.

1 November 1929:
Lt (promoted LtCdr 30 November) Hayashi Kazuo (45) (former CO of RO-32) is appointed the CO.

1 December 1931:
Lt (promoted LtCdr 1 December 1932; later Captain) Fujimoto Tsutae (48)(former equipping officer of I-61) is appointed the CO.

1 September 1933:
Cdr (later Rear Admiral) Ohashi Tatsuo (40)(current ComSubDiv 24/25) is appointed the CO of RO-68 as additional duty.

1 December 1933:
LtCdr Fujimoto Tsutae (48) is appointed the CO (his second tour as the CO of that boat).

1 June 1934:
LtCdr (later Captain) Koizumi Kiichi (49)(former torpedo officer of I-55) is appointed the CO.

15 November 1935:
LtCdr (later Captain) Shichiji Tsuneo (49)(former CO of RO-62) is appointed the CO.

20 June 1936:
LtCdr (Rear Admiral, posthumously) Emi Tetsushiro (50) (former CO of RO-65) is appointed the CO.

1 December 1936:
LtCdr (Capt, posthumously) Irie Tatsushi (51)(former torpedo officer of I-61) is appointed the CO.

20 March 1937:
LtCdr (later Captain) Tagami Meiji (51)(former torpedo officer of I-70) is appointed the CO.

1 July 1937:
Placed in reserve at Maizuru. Lt (later Captain) Inaba Michimune (51)(current CO of RO-63) is appointed the CO of RO-68 as additional duty.

31 July 1937:
LtCdr (Captain, posthumously) Izu Juichi (51)(former CO of RO-64) is appointed the CO.

1 December 1937:
LtCdr (Rear Admiral, posthumously) Togami Ichiro (51) (former CO of RO-65) is appointed the CO.

30 July 1938:
LtCdr (Cdr, posthumously) Hirokawa Takashi (51)(former CO of RO-34) is appointed the CO.

1 November 1939:
LtCdr (Cdr, posthumously) Ichikawa Akira (52)(current CO of RO-33) is appointed the CO of RO-68 as additional duty.

15 November 1939:
Maizuru. RO-68 is assigned to SubRon 7's SubDiv 33, Fourth Fleet.

20 November 1939:
LtCdr (later Cdr) Yoshitome Zennosuke (52)(current CO of I-122) is appointed the CO of RO-68 as additional duty.

25 November 1939:
LtCdr (Captain, posthumously) Harada Hakue (52)(former CO of RO-61) is appointed the CO.

20 March 1940:
LtCdr (Cdr, posthumously) Taoka Kiyoshi (55)(former CO of HATSUKARI) is appointed the CO.

15 October 1940:
LtCdr (Captain, posthumously) Tanaka Makio (52) (former CO of RO-57) is appointed the CO.

31 July 1941:
LtCdr (Cdr, posthumously) Izutsu Monshiro (57)(former torpedo officer of I-2) is appointed the CO.

2 December 1941: Operation "Z":
The coded signal "Niitakayama nobore (Climb Mt. Niitaka) 1208" is received from the Combined Fleet. It signifies that hostilities will commence on 8 December (Japan time). Mt. Niitaka, located in Formosa (now Taiwan), is then the highest point in the Japanese Empire.

4 December 1941:
At Kwajalein, Marshall Islands. RO-68 is the flagship of Captain Nagai Takeo's (47) SubDiv 33 in Rear Admiral Onishi Shinzo's (42) SubRon 7, Fourth Fleet. LtCdr Izutsu Monshiro is the Commanding Officer.

At 1400 (JST), departs Kwajalein in company of RO-64 to patrol off Howland Island and detect any U.S. reinforcements arriving from that direction.

10 December 1941:
Redirected to Baker Island in search of a suspected flying boat base.

11 December 1941:
RO-68 surfaces off Baker Island and shells the local weather and wireless stations from 0345 to 0410 (JST).

15 December 1941:
Returns to Kwajalein in company of RO-64.

24 December 1941:
Departs Kwajalein for Wake Island.

27 December 1941:
Arrives at Wake.

29 December 1941:
Departs Wake to patrol in the vicinity.

1 January 1942:
Returns to Wake.

2 January 1942:
Departs Wake for Truk.

7 January 1942:
Arrives at Truk.

15 January 1942:
Departs Truk with RO-63 and RO-64 to reconnoiter Rabaul, New Britain. Patrols S of Cape St. George.

29 January 1942:
Returns to Truk.

18 February 1942:
Departs Truk for the Marshalls area with RO-63 and RO-64.

23 February 1942:
Arrives at Ponape.

24 February 1942:
Departs Ponape with RO-63 and RO-64 for the Marshalls.

11 March 1942:
Arrives at Kwajalein.

16 March 1942:
Departs Kwajalein.

19 March 1942:
Arrives at Ponape, departs the next day.

24 March 1942:
Arrives at Saipan.

26 March 1942:
Departs Saipan for Maizuru with RO-63.

3 April 1942:
Arrives at Maizuru.

10 April 1942:
RO-68 is in SubRon 7's SubDiv 33, Fourth Fleet with RO-63 and RO-64.

23 May 1942:
Lt (Cdr, posthumously) Manabe Masateru (60)(former torpedo officer of I-64) is appointed the CO.

5 June 1942:
Departs Maizuru for Saipan.

13 June 1942:
Arrives at Saipan, departs for Truk thereafter.

27 June 1942:
Departs Truk for Yokosuka.

4 July 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

14 July 1942:
SubDiv 33 is transferred to the Fifth Fleet.

24 July 1942:
Departs Yokosuka for Paramushiro with RO-63 and RO-64.

29 July 1942:
Arrives at Paramushiro.

31 July 1942:
Departs Paramushiro for Kiska with RO-68.

4 August 1942:
Arrives at Kiska.

7 August 1942:
Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) William W. Smith's (USNA '09)(former Chief of Staff to Admiral H. E. Kimmel (USNA '04) TG 8.6 shells Kiska. RO-68, RO-61, RO-64, and I-6 are anchored in the harbor. They crash-dive to escape damage. After the bombardment, some of the submarines are sent to intercept the task group, but they fail to overtake the enemy.

8 to 10 August 1942:
RO-68, RO-61, RO-63 and RO-64 sortie to intercept TG 8.6 but fail to make the contact.

11-13 August 1942:
RO-68 participates in search for the crew of a ditched reconnaissance plane.

17-20 August 1942:
Departs Kiska to patrol in the vicinity of the island.

28-30 August 1942:
Departs Kiska to patrol in the vicinity.

3-5 September 1942:
Departs Kiska to patrol in the vicinity.

6-11 September 1942:
Departs Kiska to patrol in the vicinity.

14 September 1942:
Kiska. USAAF B-17s and B-24s escorted by Lockheed P-38 "Lightnings"and Bell P-39 "Airacobras" of the USAAF's 11th Air Force bomb shipping in the harbor. RO-68 is strafed by P-39s. Both of her periscopes are rendered inoperable.

22-24 September 1942:
Departs Kiska to patrol S of the island.

25 September 1942:
SubDiv 33 is reassigned to the Kure SubRon.

26 September 1942:
Departs Kiska for Maizuru with RO-63 and RO-64.

5 October 1942:
Arrives at Maizuru.

5 November 1942:
Captain (Rear Admiral, posthumously) Kato Ryonosuke (48), the current ComSubDiv 33, is appointed the CO of RO-68 "on paper".

6 November 1942:
Departs Maizuru for Kure.

8 November 1942:
Arrives at Kure, used as training boat thereafter.

1 January 1943:
RO-68 is in the Kure SubRon's SubDiv 33 with RO-63 and RO-64. Training duties.

16 March 1943:
Lt (Cdr, posthumously) Tachigami Rikuta (60)(former torpedo officer of I-18) is appointed the CO.

1 August 1943:
Lt (later LtCdr) Suzuki Shokichi (62)(former torpedo officer of I-8) is appointed the CO.

1 January 1944:
RO-68 is in the Kure SubRon's SubDiv 33 with RO-63, RO-64 and RO-67. Continues training duties.

20 January 1944:
Lt (later LtCdr) Sugayoshi Tessho (65)(former torpedo officer of I-6) is appointed the CO.

20 March 1944:
Lt (promoted LtCdr 1 May) Uesugi Kazuaki (63)(former CO of RO-109) is appointed the CO.

1 June 1944:
Lt (later LtCdr) Imai Kenji (66)(former torpedo officer of I-26) is appointed the CO.

1 July 1944:
LtCdr Uesugi Kazuaki (63) is appointed the CO (his second tour as the CO of that boat).

15 August 1944:
RO-68 is reassigned to Kure Guard Force.

14 October 1944:
Lt (later LtCdr) Yamanaka Nobuaki (66)(former torpedo officer of RO-113) is appointed the CO.

1 January 1945:
RO-68 is in the Kure Guard Force with RO-62 and RO-500 (ex-U-511).

5 May 1945:
RO-68 is reassigned to SubDiv 51 of SubRon 7 with RO-500.

1 June 1945:
Lt Samejima Osamu (67)(former CO of RO-67) is appointed the CO.

15 August 1945: Cessation of Hostilities:
Maizuru. RO-68 surenders.

30 November 1945:
Removed from the Navy List.

30 April 1946:
Scuttled off Maizuru Bay with I-121 and RO-500.


Authors' Note:
Thanks go to Dr. Higuchi Tatsuhiro of Japan and Mr. James F. Lansdale for catching a typo.

Bob Hackett and Sander Kingsepp.

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