FUSETSUKAN!

(YURIJIMA in Nov '42 scanned from "Japanese Warships of WW2" by A. J. Watts)

IJN Minelayer YURIJIMA:
Tabular Record of Movement

© 2005-2013 Bob Hackett, Sander Kingsepp and Peter Cundall

Revision 9


31 October 1941:
Tsurumi. Laid down at Nippon Kokan K. K.'s shipyard as minelayer No. 176.

4 July 1942:
Launched.

25 November 1942:
Completed and registered in the IJN. Assigned to the Saeki Guard Unit.

8 April 1942:
Named YURIJIMA. [1]

7 December 1942:
YURIJIMA departs Saeki with patrol boat PB-31 escorting "F" convoy (No. 8 Military Movement) consisting of SHINSEI MARU No.17, KENZAN, FUKOKU, SHIRAHA, AKAGISAN MARUs.

E 9 December 1942:
The escorts are detached at 27N.

14 December 1942: YURIJIMA departs Saeki with auxiliary minesweeper TAMA MARU No. 7 escorting the "M" convoy (No. 8 Military Movement) consisting of HAKUTETSU MARU No. 13, INDIA, TOKIHIME, TENRYU, SUMIDA and GISHO MARUs.

E 15 December 1942:
The escorts are detached at 29N.

18 December 1942:
YURIJIMA departs Saeki with patrol boat PB-46 escorting the "O" convoy (No. 8 Military Movement) consisting of FUKUEI MARU No. 9, MADRAS, KAIFUKU, HORAI, ROKKOSAN, YUKI and NICHIAI MARUs.

E 19 December 1942:
The escorts are detached at 29N.

1943:
YURIJIMA undergoes refit for operations as a convoy escort. Her minelaying rails are removed and she is fitted to carry 36 depth charges.

2 January 1943:
Joins KAISHO MARU off Fukajima and escorts her south.

E 3 January 1943:
YURIJIMA detaches 90 degrees off Toi Misaki.

14 January 1943:
YURIJIMA departs Saeki with torpedo boat HATO and subchaser CH-37 escorting the "Hinoe No. 3 Go" convoy consisting of RYUYO, ENGLAND, DAINICHI, SHONAN, NAGATO, ZUISHO, TOFUKU and BENGAL MARUs.

E 15 January 1943:
YURIJIMA and CH-37 are detached at 29N.

20 January 1943:
Departs Saeki escorting submarine tender CHOGEI.

E 21 January 1943:
YURIJIMA is detached 90 degrees off Toi Misaki.

25 January 1943:
YURIJIMA and minelayer NUWAJIMA depart Saeki escorting the "W" convoy (No. 8 Military Movement) consisting of EHIME, YASUKUNI, KUROHIME and KOSEI MARUs.

E 26 January 1943:
The escorts are detached at 29N.

28 January 1943:
YURIJIMA departs Saeki escorting the "X " convoy (No. 8 Military Movement) consisting of MIKAGE MARU No. 2, CHOUN MARU No. 2, ATSU, and FUKKO MARUs.

E 29 January 1943:
YURIJIMA is detached at 29N.

31 January 1943:
YURIJIMA and subchasers CH-36, CH-37 join transport MIIKE MARU at 34.45N 132.05E and escort her north.

E 1 February 1943:
The escorts are detached off Fukajima.

E 7 February 1943:
YURIJIMA and subchaser CH-37 join tanker SAN DIEGO MARU that is heading north.

9 February 1943:
The escorts are detached off Fukajima.

13 February 1943:
YURIJIMA and subchaser CH-37 depart Saeki escorting the “B2” convoy (No. 8 Military Movement) consisting of transports IKOMA MARU and and 4,646 ton TAMATSU MARU and IJA landing craft depot ship MAYASAN MARU.

E 14 February 1943:
The escorts are detached at 28-30N.

16 February 1943:
YURIJIMA and subchaser CH-37 briefly escort a naval force consisting of battleship MUTSU and destroyers YAMAGUMO, HATAKAZE and NOKAZE.

27 February 1943:
YURIJIMA and cable layer escort TSURUSHIMA join civilian tanker TAINAN MARU off Fukajima and escort her south.

E 28 February 1943:
The escorts are detached at 29N.

1 March 1943:
Patrol boat PB-31 joins transport MIIKE MARU at 27-30N, 132-28E and escorts her north. Later that day, YURIJIMA joins the convoy at 28-25N, 132-00E.

E 2 March 1943:
The escorts are detached off Fukajima.

17 March 1943:
YURIJIMA departs Saeki with patrol boat PB-31 escorting the "H2" convoy (No. 8 Military Movement) consisting of HANKOW, MEIZAN, NIKKI MARUs.

E 18 March 1943:
The escorts are detached at 29N.

28 March 1943:
YURIJIMA, minelayer NUWAJIMA and torpedo boat HATO join destroyers AKIKAZE and URAKAZE and escort them to Okinoshima. Later that day, YURIJIMA departs Saeki with patrol boat PB-46 escorting the "K2" convoy (No. 8 Military Movement) consisting of YONEYAMA, SHUNSHO, and SHINTO MARUs.

E 29 March 1943:
The escort is detached at 29N.

31 March 1943:
YURIJIMA and auxiliary minesweeper TAKUNAN MARU No. 3 join a convoy at 29-23N 134-55E consisting of HAMBURG, HIMALAYA and SORACHI MARUs (all from Palau) and escort the convoy north.

1 April 1943:
The escorts are detached off Fukajima

2 April 1943:
YURIJIMA and NUWAJIMA, patrol boat PB-31, and subchaser CH-36 join tanker NISSHIN MARU No. 2 at 31-17N, 132-45E and escort her north.

7 April 1943:
YURIJIMA joins tanker TATEKAWA MARU and escorts to Fukajima.

14 April 1943:
YURIJIMA joins storeship IRAKO off Fukajima and heads south through the Bungo Suido.

E 15 April 1943:
YURIJIMA is detached 90 degrees off Toi Misaki.

20 April 1943:
YURIJIMA and patrol boat PB-46 depart Saeki escorting convoy No. 420 consisting of ONOE, KINKASAN and KOYU MARUs.

E 21 April 1943:
YURIJIMA is detached at 29N.

28 April 1943::
YURIJIMA and minesweeper W-17 depart Saeki escorting convoy K-428 consisting of DAINICHI, MACASSAR, UME, ENGLAND, DOVER, SANKA, and ARATAMA MARUs.

E 30 April 1943:
W-17 is detached at 28-20N and returns to Saeki.

6 May 1943:
Arrives at Palau.

9 May 1943:
YURIJIMA departs Palau escorting convoy P-509 consisting of MEITEN, KIMISHIMA, TOKO, EHIME, TOUN, BUNZAN, SHUNSHO, TAIYU, CHIHAYA MARUs.

E 16 May 1943:
Minesweeper W-18 joins the convoy at 26-56N, 133-26E.

18 May 1943:
Arrives at Saeki.

E 15 April 1943:
YURIJIMA is detached 90 degrees off Toi Misaki.

20 April 1943:
YURIJIMA and patrol boat PB-46 depart Saeki escorting convoy No. 420 consisting of ONOE, KINKASAN and KOYU MARUs.

E 21 April 1943:
YURIJIMA is detached at 29N.

28 April 1943:
YURIJIMA and minesweeper W-17 depart Saeki escorting convoy K-428 consisting of DAINICHI, MACASSAR, UME, ENGLAND, DOVER, SANKA, and ARATAMA MARUs.

E 30 April 1943:
W-17 is detached at 28-20N and returns to Saeki.

6 May 1943:
Arrives at Palau.

9 May 1943:
YURIJIMA departs Palau escorting convoy P-509 consisting of MEITEN, KIMISHIMA, TOKO, EHIME, TOUN, BUNZAN, SHUNSHO, TAIYU and CHIHAYA MARUs.

E 16 May 1943:
Minesweeper W-18 joins the convoy at 26-56N, 133-26E.

18 May 1943:
Arrives at Saeki.

12 June 1943:
YURIJIMA, NUWAJIMA and IKI provide distant cover for arriving convoy P-607 consisting of HOFUKU, HIYOSHI and SAIPAN MARUs escorted by patrol boat PB-31. None of the escorts take the convoy beyond the entrance to the Bungo Straits.

13 June 1943:
Arrives at Moji.

14 June 1943:
YURIJIMA and minesweeper W-18 join KEIUN MARU off Fukajima and escort her south.

E 15 June 1943:
The escorts are detached off Toi Misaki.

16 June 1943:
YURIJIMA and NUWAJIMA join Army landing craft depot ship NIGITSU MARU at 27-04N, 134-00E and head north.

E 17 June 1943:
Kaibokan IKI joins escort.

E 18 June 1943:
Arrives at Saeki. NUWAJIMA then departs.

23 June 1943:
Joins armed merchant cruiser KIYOSUMI MARU at 29-25N, 132-55E and escorts her north.

24 June 1943:
Arrives at Saeki.

25 June 1943:
Battleship MUSASHI is expected in the area. YURIJIMA and NUWAJIMA, auxiliary patrol boats NISUI, HOKUTO and KOSHUN MARUs and auxiliary netlayer TAISHU MARU conduct an advance sweep of her intended route.

E 27 June 1943:
YURIJIMA and NUWAJIMA join convoy TO-906 at 30-40N, 134-50E as additional escorts. The convoy consists of DELAGOA, DAINICHI, KAZAN, MACASSAR and SAN FRANCISCO MARUs and EIKO MARU No. 2 GO escorted by patrol boat PB-46.

28 June 1943:
At 1920 arrives at Saeki.

E 1 July 1943:
YURIJIMA, NUWAJIMA and auxiliary minesweepers TAKUNAN MARU No. 8 and TAMA MARU No. 6 join convoy FU-405 at 29N consisting of NISHIYAMA (SEIZAN), MOJI, SHICHISEI, CHINZEI and KENRYU MARUs escorted by minesweeper W-18.

2 July 1943:
Arrives at Saeki.

7 July 1943:
YURIJIMA joins Army landing craft depot ship AKITSU MARU at 29-57N, 134-01E and heads north.

E 8 July 1943:
YURIJIMA is detached off Fukajima.

18 July 1943:
Because of a submarine threat in the Sea of Japan, YURIJIMA joins TATSUHARU and NANKAI MARUs at Hinomisaki and escorts them west.

E 19 July 1943:
Arrives at Mutsure.

24 July 1943:
YURIJIMA departs Saeki with kaibokan IKI and auxiliary minesweeper TAKUNAN MARU No. 8 escorting convoy O-406 consisting of FUKUYAMA, UCHIDE, KINE, KAZUURA, NISHIYAMA (SEIZAN), TENKAI MARUs.

E 26 July 1943:
YURIJIMA and TAKUNAN MARU No. 8 are detached at 29N.

30 July 1943:
At 0900, YURIJIMA departs Saeki for Palau with patrol boat PB-31 and auxiliary minesweeper TAKUNAN MARU No. 3 escorting convoy No. O-003 consisting of TAISHO, TOYOKAWA and DELAGOA MARUs. YURIJIMA and TAKUNAN MARU No. 3 are detached at 29N to return to Saeki.

E 1 August 1943:
YURIJIMA and auxiliary minesweeper TAKUNAN MARU No. 3 join convoy FU-506 at 28-25N 136-40 consisting of MATSUE, HIBI, KOYU, YURI, KOFUKU, MUKO and MYOKO MARUs escorted by patrol boat PB-46.

2 August 1943:
At 1700, arrives at Saeki.

17 August 1943:
YURIJIMA, NUWAJIMA, minesweeper W-33, auxiliary minesweepers KOZAN, AOI, YACHIYO, TAMA, OI MARUs and auxiliary netlayer TAISHU MARU conduct an advance sweep at the entrance to the Kii Straits ahead of battleships YAMATO, FUSO, NAGATO, escort carrier TAIYO, CruDiv 4's ATAGO and TAKAO, DesDiv 7's USHIO, DesDiv 10's AKIGUMO and YUGUMO, DesDiv 16's AMATSUKAZE and HATSUKAZE that transit the seaway soon after enroute to Truk via Yokosuka.

18 August 1943:
Convoy FU-806 departs Palau for Ujina consisting of TAIFUKU, HOZUGAWA, MEXICO, TOYOKAWA, TOUN and KAYO MARUs escorted by minesweeper W-17.

E 27 August 1943:
At 31-50N, 133-58E, YURIJIMA joins convoy FU-806 then escorted by minesweeper W-17, auxiliary minesweepers TAMA MARU No. 7 and TAMA MARU No. 6 (the latter two from 30-30N, 134-05E).

At 0258, LtCdr (later Rear Admiral-Ret) Bafford E. Lewellen's (USNA ’31) old USS POLLACK (SS-180) makes a visual surface attack on convoy FU-806. Lewellen torpedoes IJA cargo ship TAIFUKU MARU carrying passengers and ashes of 137 dead. W-17 opens fire on USS POLLACK, but Lewellen evades and escapes. In the morning, TAIFUKU MARU sinks at 32-28N, 132-23E taking down 14 out of 160 passengers and 14 crewmen.

28 August 1943:
At 0700, arrives at Ujina.

31 August 1943:
YURIJIMA departs Saeki with torpedo boat HATO, auxiliary netlayer TAISHU MARU, auxiliary minesweepers TAMA MARU No. 6, TAMA MARU No. 7, auxiliary gunboat CHOUN MARU and auxiliary patrol boat TAITON MARU escorting convoy O-106 consisting of SHINSEI MARU No. 1, YURI, SHOBU, KURAMASAN, TAMASHIMA and KAYO MARUs.

E 1 September 1943:
Auxiliary netlayer TAISHU MARU, auxiliary gunboat CHOUN MARU and auxiliary patrol boat TAITON MARU are detached at 30N.

E 2 September 1943:
Auxiliary minesweepers TAMA MARU No. 6, TAMA MARU No. 7 are detached at 28N.

E 4 September 1943:
YURIJIMA is detached at 25N.

10 September 1943:
YURIJIMA departs Saeki with destroyer HARUKAZE, torpedo boat SAGI, auxiliary gunboat CHOUN MARU, auxiliary patrol boat NITTO MARU No. 12 escorting convoy O-008 consisting of TONEI, NISSHU, UCHIDE, KAMOI, TSUYAMA, TONEGAWA, KIBI and CLYDE MARUs

11 September 1943:
YURIJIMA, CHOUN MARU and NITTO MARU No. 12 are detached at 30N and conduct an overnight sweep in preparation of the arrival of convoy FU-206 consisting of YOSHIDA MARU No. 3, YASUSHIMA, EHIME, SANSEI, YUBAE and SHINRYU MARUs escorted by minesweeper W-18 and auxiliary minesweepers TAKUNAN MARU No. 8 and TAMA MARU No. 7.

12 September 1943:
Arrives at Saeki.

13 September 1943:
In readiness for the arrival of armed merchant cruiser KIYOSUMI MARU, YURIJIMA performs an advance sweep along the intended route.

16 September 1943:
Convoy O-608 departs Saeki consisting of RYUOSAN, MITAKESAN, KASHU, TOYOOKA, TAMAHOKO, TOUN, MEXICO and OSAKA MARUs escorted by YURIJIMA, torpedo boat SAGI, auxiliary minesweeper TAMA MARU and auxiliary patrol boat SHINKO MARU.

E 17 September 1943:
YURIJIMA, TAMA and SHINKO MARUs are detached at 29N.

E 23 September 1943:
YURIJIMA join convoy FU-206 at 31-22N 134-00E consisting of SHINYU, FUKKAI, TOYAMA, UME, TAGA and ASAKAZE MARUs escorted by torpedo boat HATO.

24 September 1943:
Arrives at Saeki.

11 October 1943:
Carriers JUNYO and RYUHO are scheduled to transit the Bungo Suido. YURIJIMA and minelayers NUWAJIMA, KUROKAMI, KATASHIMA and auxiliary TOKUSHIMA MARU conduct an advance sweep.

Later that day, YURIJIMA and NUWAJIMA join convoy FU-105 at 31N. The convoy consists of TAIKOKU, KAYO, KINE, KIBI, UMEKAWA MARUs escorted by torpedo boat SAGI, auxiliary minesweepers TAMA MARU No. 6, TOKUHO MARU No. 10 and YACHIYO and AOI MARUs (the auxiliary minesweepers joined at 30N.)

12 October 1943:
Arrives at Saeki.

26 October 1943:
Convoy FU-607 departs Palau for Saeki, Kyushu consisting of HOSHI MARU No. 11 (JUNKITSU MARU), MEXICO, NISSHU, KAYO and NANMAN MARUs and one or two unidentified ships escorted by patrol boat PB-31.

27 October 1943:
At 2140, LtCdr (later Vice Admiral) Frank T. Watkins' (USNA ’22) USS FLYING FISH (SS-229) torpedoes and sinks NANMAN MARU at 12-02N, 134-28E. The ship is loaded with Civilian repatriates but only one crewman is KIA.

E 3 November 1943:
YURAJIMA and NUWAJIMA, patrol boat PB-31 and auxiliary minesweepers AOI and YACHIYO MARUs and TOKUHO MARU No. 10 all join convoy FU-607 at latitude 30N.

4 November 1943:
Arrives at Saeki.

5 November 1943:
YURIJIMA, NUWAJIMA and auxiliary minesweepers TAMA and OI MARUs conduct an advance sweep of the Bungo Suido ahead of battleships YAMASHIRO and ISE and carrier JUNYO transiting the seaway heading north.

13 November 1943:
YURIJIMA departs Saeki with destroyer HARUKAZE, minelayer, auxiliary minesweepers OI, TAMA MARUs escorting convoy O-306 consisting of TEIYU (ex Italian CARIGNANO), BRAZIL, CLYDE, HAVRE, UCHIDE and YURI MARUs.

E 15 November 1943:
YURIJIMA, OI and TAMA MARUs are detached at 28N.

E 6 December 1943:
At latitude 28N, YURIJIMA and NUWAJIMA join convoy FU-009 enroute from Palau to Saeki consisting of TAJIMA, TOYOOKA, NISSHIN, KOSEI, TOSHO, TENCHO, RYUWA, SAN FRANCISCO and KIZUGAWA MARUs escorted by minesweepers W-17, W-18 and auxiliary minesweepers OI MARU and TAMA MARU No. 6.

7 December 1943:
Arrives at Saeki.

8 December 1943:
YURIJIMA departs Saeki for Palau with torpedo boat HATO escorting convoy O-803 consisting of fleet oiler IRO and cargo ships FUKKO MARU and TAIAN MARU that is towing a crane platform.

E 9 December 1943: At latitude 28N YURIJIMA and auxiliary minesweeper TAKUNAN MARU No. 8 meet up with FU-008 convoy en route from Palau to Saeki consisting of IKOMA, MAYA, YASUKUNI, TESHIO, HOZUGAWA, HAVRE, SHINRYU MARUs and DAIGEN MARU No. 3 escorted by patrol boat PB-31.

10 December 1943:
At 1000, YURIJIMA is detached from the convoy.

18 December 1943:
At 0100 YURIJIMA, destroyer HARUKAZE, and auxiliary minesweepers TAKUNAN MARU No. 8 and TAMA MARU No. 7 departs Saeki in convoy O-806 consisting of SHICHISEI, YAMAYURI, TEMPOSAN, RYUTO, BICCHU and SORACHI MARUs

E 19 December 1943:
At 29N TAKUNAN MARU No. 8 and TAMA MARU No. 7 are both detached.

E 20 December 1943:
At 28N YURIJIMA is detached.

27 December 1943:
At 0630, YURIJIMA departs Saeki with torpedo boat SAGI and auxiliary minesweeper TAMA MARU No. 7 escorting convoy O-708 consisting of SHIROGANESAN, KANKYO, SHUNKO, HOZUGAWA, TATSUMI, OYASHIMA, BOKUYO and MURORAN.

28 December 1943:
At 2000, YURIJIMA and TAMA MARU No. 7 are detached. YURIJIMA sails to meet convoy FU-805.

28 December 1943:
Minesweeper W-17 departs Palau for Saeki escorting convoy FU-805 consisting of CLYDE, TASMANIA, UCHIDE and SAIHO MARUs and SHINTO MARU No. 1.

29 December 1943:
At latitude 28N (near Amami Oshima, Ryukyus), YURIJIMA and auxiliary subchaser TAKUNAN MARU join the escort.

30 December 1943:
Tokyo Bay. At 1400, W-17 is detached.

4 January 1944:
At 2315, arrives at Muroran.

6 January 1944:
Arrives at Saeki, then proceeds to Ujina.

1 February 1944:
Departs Saipan for Truk escorting an unidentified convoy.

7 March 1944:
At 1300, YURIJIMA departs Chichi-Jima for Truk with auxiliary minesweepers TORISHIMA MARU and auxiliary gunboat NACHI MARU escorting convoy Higashi-Matsu 1B consisting of IMIZU, HOKO and SHINFUKU MARUs.

14 March 1944:
Arrives at Truk.

17 March 1944:
YURIJIMA departs Truk with kaibokan OKI escorting a convoy consisting of sub tender TSUKUSHI MARU and KAZUURA and IMIZU MARUs.

24 March 1944:
Arrives at Saipan. Departs later that day.

27 March 1944:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

15 April 1944:
At 0600, YURIJIMA departs Tokyo with destroyers HOKAZE, YUNAGI, UZUKI, kaibokan MIYAKE and CD-6, minelayers SARUSHIMA, KYOSAI, minesweepers W-20, W-28 and subchasers CH-10 and CH-12 escorting convoy "Higashi-Matsu No. 6" consisting of AWAJI, HAKUBA, KATSUKAWA, TAKAOKA, BATAVIA, AWA and HOKUSHIN MARUs bound for Saipan, CHOAN MARU No. 2 and MIKAGE MARU No. 1 bound for Truk, JOKUJA, BISAN and JINSAN MARUs bound for Palau, KAMISHIMA and SHOZAN MARUs bound for Woleai, INARI and TONEGAWA MARUs bound for Guam and TATSUSHO (TATSUAKI) and TAMAHOKO MARUs bound for Chichi-Jima.

18 April 1944:
TATSUAKI and TAMAHOKO MARUs are detached for Chichi-Jima escorted by YURIJIMA and KYOSAI and arrive there later that day.

28 April 1944:
At 1330 departs Chichi-Jima escorting a convoy (allegedly 4513 but number appears incorrect) consisting of HYAKUFUKU and TATSUSHO (TATSUAKI) MARUs also escorted by minelayer KYOSAI, auxiliary minesweepers TOSHI MARU No. 8 and TAMA MARU No. 6 and auxiliary KIKU MARU No. 8.

2 May 1944:
At 0650 arrives at Minami Torishima (Marcus Is).

6 May 1944:
At 1330 the same convoy departs Minami Torishima.

11 May 1944:
At 0030 arrives back at Chichi-Jima.

13 May 1944:
At 0530 YURIJIMA, minelayer KYOSAI and auxiliary minesweepers TOSHI MARU No. 8 and TAMA MARU No. 6 depart escorting convoy No. 4513 consisting of HYAKUFUKU and TATSUSHO (TATSUAKI) MARUs.

E 15 May 1944:
TOSHI MARU No. 8 and TAMA MARU No. 6 are detached and return to Chichi-Jima.

17 May 1944:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

21 May 1944:
YURIJIMA and minelayer KYOSAI depart Tokyo Bay escorting convoy No. 3521 likely consisting of SHOUN MARU and possibly others.

28 May 1944:
Arrives at Saipan.

3 June 1944:
YURIJIMA departs Saipan with torpedo boat HIYODORI, minelayer KYOSAI and converted net layer KISHIN MARU escorting an unnamed convoy consisting of SEIKA and SHINFUKU MARUs and NISSHO MARU No. 18.

7 June 1944:
Arrives at Truk.

7 July 1944:
On that day, FRUMEL provides the following information: C-in-C. 4th Fleet stated on 5th June that if the situation permits he will send 300 army troop and food and ammunition to Mortlock in the HIYODORI and YURISHIMA.

31 July 1944:
YURIJIMA departs Takao with destroyer SHIOKAZE, kaibokan CD-10, subchaser CH-48 escorting convoy TAMO-22 consisting of TATSUWA MARU and six unidentified merchant ships.

1 August 1944:
Arrives at Keelung, Formosa.

4 August 1944:
Departs Keelung.

8 August 1944:
Arrives at Moji.

27 August 1944:
At 0800, YURIJIMA departs Moji for Miri, Borneo with destroyers SHIOKAZE, KURETAKE, kaibokan CD-18, and minesweeper W-17 escorting convoy MI-17 consisting of tankers NITTETSU and SHIMOTSU MARUs and cargo ships BAIKAL, AMAHI, DAITEN, NORWAY, ARAOSAN, NICHIZUI, HOKUREI, SHUYO and SORACHI MARUs and SHINYO MARU No. 8 and possibly YOZAN MARU and two unidentified merchant ships.

E September 1944:
YURIJIMA is assigned to the 10th Base Force, First Southern Expeditionary Fleet, Southwest Area Fleet.

1 September 1944:
Arrives at Mako, Pescadores. SORACHI and NITTETSU MARUs and one unidentified ship are detached. An unidentified ship joins the convoy. W-20 and subchaser CH-41 join the escort.

4 September 1944:
At 1000, the convoy departs Mako for Manila.

6 September 1944:
At 1500, arrives at Aparri, Luzon. W-17, W-20 and CH-41 are detached.

10 September 1944:
Arrives at Manila. YURIJIMA and CD-18 are detached as well as NORWAY, AMAHI, HOKUREI, BAIKAL, DAITEN, ARAOSAN MARUs and likely SHUYO and YOZAN MARUs. Eight merchant ships consisting of HOSEN, TAISHO MARUs, UNKAI MARU No. 5 and KYOEI MARU No. 10 and four unidentified merchant ships join the convoy.

20 September 1944:
At 0610, YURIJIMA departs Bataan in Manila Bay for Cape St. Jacques, Indochina with minesweepers W-18, W-101, auxiliary subchasers KAIKO MARU and CHa-67 and auxiliary transport UJINA MARU escorting convoy MASA-11 consisting of MYOGI, MIKASA, FRANCE and UGO MARUs and convoy MAYU-08 consisting of BINGO and NICHIZUI MARUs.

25 September 1944:
Convoy MAYU-08 arrives at Samah, Hainan Island.

26 September 1944:
At 0140, Convoy MASA-11 arrives at Cap St. Jacques.

3 October 1944:
At 1500, YURIJIMA and minesweeper W-18 depart Cap St. Jacques escorting convoy SAMA-13 consisting of MYOGI, HEIAN, MIKASA, TEIYU (ex Italian CARIGNANO), UGO and OYO MARUs. That evening as the ships travel close to shore, a strong wind blows MYOGI, HEIAN and OYO MARUs ashore. The remainder of the convoy returns to St. Jacques while the escorts assist refloating the three ships which return to St. Jacques for minor repairs.

16 October 1944:
YURIJIMA is detached from the convoy and replaced by minesweeper W-17.

Yokohama. Combined Fleet Headquarters, Keio University. That same day, Chief of Staff Vice Admiral Kusaka Ryunosuke (41)(former CO of AKAGI) releases a dispatch that assigns YURIJIMA, kaibokan CHIBURI, CD-19 and CD-27 and minesweeper W-34 with oiler ITSUKUSHIMA MARU to Vice Admiral Kurita Takeo's (38)(former CO of KONGO) First Striking Force's 1st Supply Force with oilers NICHEI, YUHO, OMUROSAN, RYOEI and BANEI MARUs. Later, IJA oilers HAKKO and NIPPO MARUs are also assigned to Kurita's force

17 October 1944:
Vice Admiral Kurita orders YURIJIMA and CD-27 to proceed to Brunei with NIPPO and OMUROSAN MARUs.

22 October 1944:
Arrives at Brunei. At 0800, Kurita's Striking Force steams for Leyte Gulf via the Sibuyan Sea and San Bernardino Strait. Kurita orders Vice Admiral Nishimura Shoji's (39)(former CO of HARUNA) BatDiv 2, cruiser MOGAMI and four destroyers to sortie through Surigao Strait to Leyte Gulf to envelop the U.S. invasion forces.

2 December 1944:
YURIJIMA departs Manila for Singapore with destroyer KISHINAMI and CD-17 escorting tanker HAKKO MARU.

4 December 1944:
NW of Palawan Island. About 1300, LtCdr (later Captain) George W. Grider’s (USNA ’36) USS FLASHER (SS-249) torpedoes and sinks destroyer KISHINAMI taking down 90 of her crew including her CO, Cdr (Captain posthumously) Mifune Toshiro (52), at 12-54N, 116-27 E and damages HAKKO MARU that begins burning. YURIJIMA rescues 150 of KISHINAMI’s survivors. At about 1900, USS FLASHER returns and again torpedoes HAKKO MARU that sinks. The ship was carrying reservist officer students and 24 patients discharged from Manila Hospital who along with 24 crewmen are killed.

At 1052, USN codebreakers intercept a message from YURIJIMA that says “Torpedo attack, damage incurred. Position 12-54 N, 116-27 E --- and HAKKO MARU ---.”

5 December 1944:
At 1020, USN codebreakers intercept another message from YURIJIMA that says “Have picked up following personnel: --- --- Division Commander and 128 men (6 seriously wounded), Master of HAKKO MARU and --- men. 22 Army and 263 Naval passengers (of whom 9 are seriously and 1 lightly wounded.) YURIJIMA will proceed as follows: -----.”

12 January 1945:
At 0300, YURIJIMA departs Cap St. Jacques, Indochina for Singapore with minesweeper W-20 escorting convoy SASHI-40 consisting of SHINSEI, HOKOKU and FRANCE MARUs and FUSHIMI MARU No. 2 and KYOEI MARU No. 7. [2]

About 0730, a carrier-type aircraft appears and drops a star shell over the convoy, then withdraws. The convoy proceeds at 8 knots. About 1100, three Grumman F6F "Hellcat" fighters bomb and strafe the ships. At 1200, four more aircraft dive-bomb and strafe while the ships return fire. At 1220, SHINSEI MARU is hit portside blowing a large hole in her hull. At 1310, Abandon Ship is ordered. By 1320, her list increases and SHINSEI MARU capsizes and sinks at 09-24N, 106-44E. She was carrying 1,266 Army troops, aviation spares and bombs. A total of 64 of the passengers on board, 8 escort troops and 22 crewmen are killed.

The convoy reverses course towards Cap St. Jacques. About 1400, KYOEI MARU No. 7 is hit by bombs and sinks with all hands (25 crewmen). FRANCE MARU, carrying the 3rd Shipping Transport Headquarters and 70th Anchorage Headquarters troops, is also bombed and damaged, but manages to beach herself. Fires rage and she is abandoned. Five of the passengers and 38 crewmen are killed. FUSHIMI MARU No. 2 and HOKOKU MARU are damaged, but reach Cape St. Jacques the same day. The convoy is disbanded. Later, YURIJIMA arrives at Singapore.

14 January 1945:
YURIJIMA departs Singapore heading NE.

Off Kota Bharu, SE Malaya. At about 1300, LtCdr Albert L. Becker’s (USNA ’36) USS COBIA (SS-245) torpedoes and sinks YURIJIMA at 05-45N, 113-13E. The casualties for YURIJIMA are unknown. Although USS COBIA later rescues two survivors from a nearby raft these were not from YURIJIMA.

10 March 1945:
Removed from the Navy List.


Authors' Note:
[1] YURIJIMA was also known as YURISHIMA. [2] SHINTAI MARU is an alternative reading of SHINGI MARU or JINGI MARU.

Thanks go to John Whitman for info on USN intercepts of IJN messages and to Mr. Gilbert Casse of France. Special thanks go to Hans Mcilveen of the Netherlands for info on FRUMEL intercepts.

-Bob Hackett, Sander Kingsepp and Peter Cundall


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