Editorial Notes by Anthony Tully - Managing Editor, CombinedFleet.com


(1) - With no one apparently aboard at this time, it is impossible to confirm hits. However, the condition of Tokitsukaze at daybreak of the 4th strongly argues that damage was light and any additional hits were few.

(2) A commonly published vertical of a dead in the water DD in a large oil slick under bombing attack at the Bismarck Sea battle is often identified as an Asashio-class. However, in October 2005 Ed Low in an analysis on J-aircraft convincingly demonstrated it is Kagero-class, and thus the Tokitsukaze. In addition, the original caption of the photo gives the time as 0910 local 4 March; and Japanese sources also confirm only one destroyer remained afloat 4 March. (Besides, Asashio had sunk on the 3rd, and Arashio is visibly missing her bow.) Comparison of the relative position of fixed deck features make the identification. Notice the starboard fantail somewhat awash because of the starboard list and No 2 TT mount trained out probably as part of the lightening attempts or to jettison torpedoes.

(3) Japanese survivors from Aiyo Maru had climbed aboard the drifting Tokitsukaze the morning of 4 March, only to have to jump back overboard as each attack took place. They found Tokitsukaze down at the stern and listing to starboard, as she apparently had been since the previous day and remained. They confirmed that the Japanese planes did not sink her, and that she was sunk by enemy bombing close to dusk.

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Last: 3/25/2015h2306