(WAIHORA, later TAIRYU MARU, prewar)
Tabular Record of Movement
© 2014-2016 Bob Hackett
River Tyne, England. Laid down by Swan Hunter & Wigham Richardson, Neptune
Yard, Low Walker as Yard Number 776, a 4,994-ton cargo steamship for the Union
Steamship Co. of New Zealand, Ltd, Dunedin, NZ.
15 April 1907:
Launched and named WAIHORA.
1914~1918: First World War:
WAIHORA is chartered by the Royal
Australian Navy and with the Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Force
takes part in operations against German colonies in the Pacific. Later used by
New Zealand as a troop transport as His Majesty’s New Zealand Transport WAIHORA.
Sold to Naigai Kisen K. K, Kobe and renamed TAIRYU MARU.
Sold to Kuribayashi Shosen K. K, Tokyo.
21 September 1941:
Requisitioned by the Imperial Army (IJA). Alloted IJA No. 72.
Departs Saigon for Singora, Thailand carrying equipment and personnel for the invasion of Malaya.
5 April 1942:
TAIRYU MARU departs Lingayen for Cebu, Philippines in an
invasion convoy with BORNEO, INDIA, MEXICO, NAGANO, RISSHUN, RYUUN and TOTTORI MARUs escorted by light cruiser KUMA, DesDiv2 (less 2 destroyers) HARUSAME,
MURASAME, SAMIDARE and YUDACHI , torpedo boat KIJI, gun boat BUSHO MARU and
auxiliary subchasers KIYO MARU No. 12 and KIYO MARU No. 13. The convoy carries
4,852 men of the Kawaguchi Detachment's consisting of the 35th Infantry Brigade
HQ, 124th Infantry Regiment, 1 platoon of the 16th Reconnaissance Regiment, 4th
Company, 22nd Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd Company, 21st Field Heavy Artillery
Battalion, the main force of the 44th Anchorage HQ, 1 platoon of the 23rd
Independent Engineer Regiment [type “E”], 1 company (less 2 platoons) of the
26th Independent Engineer Regiment [type “D”] and part of the Logistics Units.
10 April 1942:
The convoy arrives at Cebu. INDIA, MEXICO, RISSHUN
TAIRYU and TOTTORI MARU begin to land troops at Cebu City and on the west coast
(Argao) (Aloguinsan and Barili) with 4 Daihatsus, 3 Shohatsu landing craft. The
transports land the 3rd Battalion, 124th Infantry Regiment, Regimental Gun
Company, 1 platoon of Rapid-fire Gun Company, part of Regiment Signal Unit, a
temporarily formed Armored Car Company, 2 platoons of the brigade signal unit,
part of the 14th Army Radio Platoon and part of the 67th Line-of-communications
Hospital. Seaplane tender SANUKI MARU covers the landings.
Meanwhile, BORNEO and NAGANO MARUs land toops on the east coast (Argao)
of Cebu Island. with unknown landing craft. The two transports land the 124th
Infantry Regiment HQ, 1st Battalion, the 124th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Battalion
(minus 7th Co), the 124th Infantry Regiment, Rapid-fire Gun Company (lessus 1
platoon), the main force of Regiment Signal Unit, 1 platoon of the brigade radio
signal unit, 1 armored car platoon of the 16th Reconnaissance Regiment, 4th
Company, the 22nd Field Artillery Regiment, 1 platoon of the 14th Army Road
Construction Unit, part of the 14th Army Propaganda Section, 2nd Company, 21st
Field Heavy Artillery Battalion and a temporarily formed anti-air machine cannon
11 April 1942:
Ten 3rd Bomb Group B-25-C “Mitchell” medium bombers
fitted with long distance tanks and three B-17 “Flying Fortress” heavy bombers
of the 19th Bomb Group, all under the command of BrigGen (later MajGen) Ralph G.
Royce, take off from Charters Towers Airfield, Townsville, Queensland, Australia
via Darwin for the 1,500-mile flight to Del Monte, Mindanao.
12 April 1942:
All the planes arrive safely at Del Monte where the
tanks are removed and replaced by bombs. The B-25s are then dispersed to
concealed P-40 “Warhawk” fighter airstrips at Valencia and Maramag.
SANUKI MARU launches four F1M2s “Pete” float fighters to bomb the USAAF
airfield at Del Monte. A P-35A "Guardsman", orbiting the air field, engages the
Petes, while two P-40Es take off to intercept them. An F1M2 is shot down by one
of the P-40s, but the other three F1M2s bomb the airfield. They wreck a B-17E
and damage two others. At 1815, SANUKI MARU enters Cebu Port.
13 April 1942:
Just after midnight, ten B-25s take off and bomb
shipping at Cebu Island. Royce’s B-25s fly more than 20 sorties against shipping
and harbor facilities at Cebu. Two of the B-17's carry out single-bomber strikes
from Mindanao against Cebu harbor.
26 April 1942:
The invasion convoy departs Cebu for Mindanao,
Philippines including landing Support Units, the main force of the 44th
Anchorage HQ, 1 platoon of the 23rd Independent Engineer Regiment [type “E”], 1
company (less 2 platoons) of the 26th Independent Engineer Regiment [type “D”]
escorted by l DesDiv2 (less 2 destroyers) MURASAME and SAMIDARE,
29 April 1942:
Moro Gulf. The convoy arrives at Cotabato, Mindanao
and with 4 Daihatsus, 2 boats with engines lands part of the Detachment
including the 3rd Battalion HQ, 3rd Battalion (lesss 11th and 12th Companies,
1/4 IIIMG),2 platoons of the brigade signal unit, part of the 67th
Line-of-communications Hospital, the main force of the Detachment Landing at
Parang with 8 Daihatsus and 6 Shohatsus, 124th Infantry Regiment HQ, 1st
Battalion, the 124th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Battalion (minus 12th Co), the 124th
Infantry Regiment, 1 armored car platoon of the 16th Reconnaissance Regiment, 1
platoon of the 14th Army Road Construction Unit, 4th Company, 22nd Field
Artillery Regiment, 2nd Company, the 21st Field Heavy Artillery Battalion and a
temporarily formed anti-air machine cannon unit
6 September 1942:
At 1000, TAIRYU MARU departs Futtsu in a west bound
convoy also consisting of oiler TAICHU MARU escorted by auxiliary gunboat KASAGI
30 October 1942:
TAIRYU MARU departs Mutsure in convoy No. 180 also
consisting of TAITO and YONEYAMA MARUs and three unidentified merchant ships
escorted by destroyer ASAGAO.
E 3 November 1942:
Arrives at Mako.
21 April 1943:
TAIRYU MARU departs Horsburgh Light, near Singapore
escorted by kaibokan SHIMUSHU.
23 April 1943:
Released by the IJA back to her owners.
5 July 1943:
Requisitioned by the Imperial Navy (IJN) as an Ippan Choyosen cargo ship (B-AK).
30 July 1943:
TAIRYU MARU departs Moji in convoy No. 174 consisting of
ammunition ship ARATAMA, transports KIRISHIMA, KONSAN, TEIKA (ex-Vichy French
CAP VARELLA) and YASUKUNI MARUs (5794 tons) and 12 other unidentified merchant
ships escorted by destroyer SANAE and patrol boat PB-36
4 August 1943:
Arrives at Takao.
16 January 1944:
TAIRYU MARU departs St Jacques in convoy No. 457
also consisting of tanker KIKUSUI MARU and seven unidentified merchant ships
escorted by subchaser CH-19 and auxiliary gunboat CHOJUSAN MARU.
17 January 1944:
CH-19 is detached.
28 January 1944:
Arrives at Takao.
31 January 1944:
At 1000, TAIRYU MARU departs Takao in convoy No. 239
also consisting of IJN tanker KONSAN MARU, transport SHOKEI MARU, civilian cargo
ship BANSHU MARU and five unidentified merchant ships escorted by the torpedo
19 February 1944:
TAIRYU MARU departs Keelung for Takao, Formosa in a
convoy also consisting of CHIKUZEN MARU escorted by destroyer TSUGA At 1320, the
convoy is bombed and strafed by USAAF 14th Air Force B-24 “Liberator” heavy
bombers that sink TAIRYU MARU at 25-25N, 121-30E Seven crewmen are KIA. The
planes also damage CHIKUZEN MARU, but TSUGA is undamaged
At 1315, USN codebreakers intercept a message in plain language from
TSUGA that reads: "Am engaging enemy aircraft.” At 1320, they intercept another
message that reads: “TAIRYU MARU was bombed by enemy aircraft and sank 20 miles
north of Kuku Point.”
30 April 1944:
Removed from the Navy List
 Not to be confused with IJN transport TAIRYU MARU
(1,912/07) and IJA transport TAIRYU MARU (2,215/19)
to IJA Transports