© 1998 Allyn D. Nevitt

IJN Kisaragi: Tabular Record of Movement

MUTSUKI-class (12 ships) profile (Ships of the World)

@Updated - July 29, 2009 - Allyn Nevitt

@Revised - Allyn Nevitt with Anthony Tully - July 2014

Name Translation: "February" (poetic), “Second Month of Lunar Calendar”

5 June 1935:
Launched at Maizuru Navy Yard.

21 December 1925:

Initial Command Structure:

Ship's captain: Lieutenant Commander Ogawa Yoichiro [57] (prev. C.O. SANAE). Assigned to Desdiv 30 (MUTSUKI, KISARAGI, YAYOI, MOCHIZUKI). Desdiv 30 assigned to Desron 6, Fourth Fleet.

29 November-3 December 1941:

Desdiv 30 steamed with Desron 6 from Truk to Kwajalein.

8 December:

Departed Kwajalein, then with first Wake Island invasion force led by ComDesRon 6 Rear Admiral (Vice Admiral, posthumously) Kajioka Sadamichi's (39) flagship YUBARI. Force comprised of CruDiv 18 light cruisers TATSUTA and TENRYU, DesDiv 29's OITE and HAYATE, DesDiv 30 (MUTSUKI, KISARAGI, YAYOI, MOCHIZUKI) , two converted destroyer transports, submarine depot ship JINGEI, armed merchant cruiser KONGO MARU and transport KINRYU MARU.

11 December:
Sunk: by U.S. Marine aircraft 30 miles southwest of Wake Island (18-55 N, 166-17 E). The initial pre-landing bombardment attempt ended in disaster, with destroyer HAYATE being sunk by gunfire. YAYOI, MUTSUKI and KISARAGI of Desdiv 30 made an abortive attempt to bombard Peale and Wilkes Islands but broke off when YAYOI was hit by shellfire. [1] Due to air attack and the shore batteries, Invasion Commander Kaijioka ordered the landings suspended and surface forces to retire. While thus engaged, KISARAGI came under air attack. About 0537 a bomb struck which blew off most of her bridge. At 0542 she upended sharply and sank so swiftly that all hands, including Lt.Cdr.Ogawa and 156 men were lost.[2]

15 January 1942:

Removed from Navy List.

[1] This gunfire came from Peale Island. U.S. sources show 1st Lt Woodrow W. Kessler's Battery "B" 5-inch scored the hit.

[2] There is notabe discrepancy in accounts of Kisaragi's loss. Another version says an initial bomb hit started fires that then reportedly led to explosion of depth charges (eyewitnesses dispute this, saying fatal blast originated amidships). Crew apparently fought a losing battle against internal fires for some time – Kisaragi's attackers had time to land back at Wake, refuel and re-arm, and return to find her still smoking and wallowing – before she suddenly blew up and sank before their eyes. Other accounts say strafing fire set off the volatile Type-95 charges on the stern, but the observed circumstances make this less likely. U.S. sources allege this was due to 100-lb bomb dropped by Captain Henry T. Elrod, USMC of VMF-211.

Special thanks are due to Anthony Tully in preparing this TROM,and to Lu Yu for translations from Senshi Sosho. Credits to Bob Hackett, Sander Kingsepp, and Bill Somerville, for entries derived from their works.

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