(NACHI - digitally colorized by Irotooko, Jr)

IJN NACHI: Tabular Record of Movement

© 1997-2018 Bob Hackett and Sander Kingsepp
Revision 18

26 November 1924:
Kure Navy Yard. Laid down.

21 May 1928:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Niiyama Yoshiyuki (32)(former CO of TATSUTA) is appointed the Chief Equipping Officer (CEO).

10 September 1928:
Captain Niiyama Yoshiyuki is appointed the Commanding Officer.

26 November 1928:
Under construction. Designated NACHI. Work remains to be accomplished on her superstructure and main armament systems. A political decision is made that NACHI will be present for the Emperor Hirohito's (Showa) upcoming Coronation Naval Review to be attended by warships from Great Britian and other countries. NACHI is "completed" and attached to Sasebo Naval District.

4 December 1928:
Off Yokohama. NACHI attends the Coronation Review with AOBA, FURUTAKA, KAKO and KINUGASA and other IJN warships. After the review, NACHI is put back into work.

April 1929:
NACHI is finally completed.

28-29 May 1929:
The Emperor Hirohito (Showa) cruises aboard NACHI on an inspection tour of industries in the Kansai district (Osaka, Kyoto, Kobe, Nagoya) to encourage domestic production.

1 November 1929:
Captain Niiyama is appointed the CO of MYOKO as additional duty.

30 November 1929:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Onishi Jiro (34)(former CO of FURUTAKA) is appointed the CO.

1 December 1930:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Hirata Noboru (34)(former Naval Submarine School instructor) is appointed the CO.

1 December 1931:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Tabata Keigi (35)(former CO of TSURUMI) is appointed the CO.

1 December 1932:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Owada Yoshinosuke (35)(former CO of KARASAKI) is appointed the CO.

15 November 1933:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Iwaihara Fuchina (36)(former CoS of Maizuru Naval District) is appointed the CO.

15 November 1934:
Captain (later Vice Admiral), the Marquis, Komatsu Teruhisa (37)(former CO of KISO) is appointed the CO.

2 December 1935:
Captain (later Vice Admiral), Totsuka Michitaro (38) (former chief of Naval General Staff 3rd Section 2nd Bureau) is appointed the CO.

29 June 1936:
Sasebo Navy Yard. NACHI's first reconstruction is completed.

20 August 1937:
NACHI departs Atsuta (near Nagoya) with cruisers ASHIGARA, HAGURO, MYOKO and MAYA, light cruiser JINTSU and destroyers AKEBONO, AMAGIRI, ASAGIRI, AYANAMI, ISONAMI, OBORO, SHIKINAMI and YUGIRI. NACHI is carrying 3rd Division HQ, 6th Infantry Regiment HQ and its 1st Company.

21 August 1937:
Arrives at the Saddle (Ma'an) Islands, NE Zhoushan archipelago, China. Troops are transferred to JINTSU and destroyers AMAGIRI, ASAGIRI, MURASAME, OBORO, SAMIDARE, USHIO, YUDACHI and YUGIRI.

16 November 1936:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Fukuda Ryozo (38)(former instructor at Naval Academy) is appointed the CO.

1 December 1937:
Sasebo. NACHI's second reconstruction is completed. Captain (later Rear Admiral) Iwagoe Kanki (38)(former CO of MIKUMA) is appointed the CO.

28 January-1 May 1939:
Captain Iwagoe is appointed the CO of the training cruiser IWATE as additional duty.

10 October 1939:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Sato Tsutomu (40)(the current CO of KINUGASA) is appointed the CO of NACHI as additional duty.

15 November 1939:
Captain (Vice Admiral, posthumously) Yatsushiro Sukeyoshi (40)(former CO of KUMANO) is appointed the CO.

15 November 1940:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Takama Tamotsu (41)(former CoS of Chinkai Guard District) is appointed the CO.

23-25 November 1940:
At Sasebo.

26 November 1940:
Departs Sasebo for Mako, Pescadores.

20 August 1941:
Captain (promoted Rear Admiral 1 November 1942) Kiyota Takahiko (42)(former CO of KINUGASA) is appointed the CO.

2 December 1941:
NACHI is in Rear Admiral (Admiral, posthumously) Takagi Takeo's (former CO of MUTSU) CruDiv 5 with MYOKO and HAGURO.

CruDiv 5 receives the coded signal "Niitakayama nobore (Climb Mt. Niitaka) 1208" from the Combined Fleet. This signifies that X-Day hostilities will commence on 8 December (Japan time). [1]

6 December 1941: Operation "M" - The Attack on the Southern Philippines:
CruDiv 5's NACHI and MYOKO depart Palau to provide cover for the planned landings at Davao and Legaspi in Vice Admiral Takahashi Ibo's (former CO of KIRISHIMA) Third Fleet, Southern Force, Philippine Seizure Force.

The Covering Force includes light carrier RYUJO with destroyer SHIOKAZE, Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Tanaka Raizo's (former CO of KONGO) DesRon 2's light cruiser JINTSU and DesDiv 15's HAYASHIO, NATSUSHIO, OYASHIO and KUROSHIO and DesDiv 16's YUKIKAZE, TOKITSUKAZE, HATSUKAZE and AMATSUKAZE.

CruDiv 5 supports Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Kubo Kyuji's (former CO of MIKUMA) Fourth Surprise Attack Force: seaplane tenders CHITOSE and MIZUHO, the light cruisers NAGARA (F) and NAKA, five destroyers and seven transports.

11 December 1941:
Covers the landings at Legaspi.

15 December 1941:
Returns to Palau.

17 December 1941:
CruDiv 5 departs Palau with Rear Admiral Tanaka's Southern Philippines Attack Force's RYUJO, CHITOSE, NAGARA, DesRon 2 and twelve transports.

19-20 December 1941:
Supports the invasion landings at Davao.

24 December 1941:
Supports the invasion landings at Jolo. Returns to Palau.

29 December 1941:
Departs Palau.

31 December 1941:
Arrives in the Davao Gulf.

4 January 1942:
CruDiv 5 is with the Attack Force at the former U.S. Navy anchorage at Malalag Bay, Davao Gulf. They are bombed by B-17D "Flying Fortresses" from Java while anchored. The planes approach to the anchorage was difficult to detect due to the high mountains nearby.

MYOKO is hit by one bomb. Anchored 500 meters away is NACHI, and she receives shrapnel damage. The searchlight on the signal tower is damaged and the gunnery officer wounded in the eye by fragments of the bomb that struck MYOKO. CruDivi 5's Rear Admiral Takagi's flag is transferred from MYOKO to NACHI.

9 January 1942: Operation "H" - The Invasion of the Celebes:
At Davao. NACHI and HAGURO provide close support.

11-14 January 1942:
NACHI and HAGURO cover the landings at Menado and Kema.

24 January 1942:
NACHI and HAGURO cover the landings at Kendari.

26 January 1942:
S of Davao. LtCdr (later Captain) Richard G. Voge's USS SAILFISH (SS-192) sights what they identify as a "NACHI-class cruiser" and a destroyer. Voge sets up and makes a submerged daylight attack. At about noon, he fires four Mark -14 torpedoes at the cruiser and hears an explosion. Voge's soundman thinks he hears the target's propellers stop. Although Voge is credited with damaging a cruiser, postwar neither NACHI or HAGURO are found to have been damaged at that time and place.

29-31 January 1942:
NACHI and HAGURO depart Davao for Bangka Roads, Celebes. Supports the seizure of Ambon.

5-10 February 1942:
Departs Bangka for Staring Bay, Celebes. Supports the landings at Makassar.

17-20 February 1942:
Supports the landings at Dili and Kupang, Timor.

24 February 1942:
CruDiv 5 departs Staring Bay.

27 February 1942: The Battle of the Java Sea:
At 1547, NACHI and HAGURO, DesRon 2's light cruiser JINTSU with DesDiv 16's YUKIKAZE, TOKITSUKAZE, AMATSUKAZE and HATSUKAZE and DesDiv 7's USHIO, SAZANAMI, YAMAKAZE and KAWAKAZE engage Dutch Rear Admiral Karel W. F. M. Doorman's Strike Force's light cruiser HNMS DE RUYTER, cruisers HMS EXETER, USS HOUSTON (CA-30), light cruisers HMAS PERTH, HNMS JAVA, destroyers HMS ELECTRA, ENCOUNTER, JUPITER, HNMS KORTENAER and WITTE de WITH and old destroyers USS ALDEN (DD-211), JOHN D. EDWARDS (DD-216), JOHN D. FORD (DD-228) and PAUL JONES (DD-230).

At 1603, DesRon 4's light cruiser NAKA with DesDiv 9's ASAGUMO, MINEGUMO, MURASAME, HARUSAME, SAMIDARE and YUDACHI launch their Type 93 "Long Lance" torpedoes at Doorman's force. At 1638, EXETER is hit in her boilers by HAGURO. At 1640, HNMS KORTENAER hit by a torpedo from HAGURO, blows up and sinks.

At about 1700, NACHI launches her two Nakajima E8N2 Type 95 "Dave" spotting planes. The pilots gain altitude and observe the floatplanes from HAGURO also positioning themselves over the ABDA fleet for spotting. They search the sky for enemy planes, but find none.

At 1746, HMS ELECTRA and ASAGUMO engage in a gun battle. ELECTRA is sunk. At 2000, HMS JUPITER hits a Dutch mine and sinks. [2]

Later, American LtCdr (later Captain) Henry G. Munson's submarine USS S-38 surfaces and rescues 58 ELECTRA crewmen from the water.

NACHI's floatplanes continue to fly until after dark. During their recovery, NACHI and HAGURO are surprised by the Allied Striking Force, but manage to make a swift and narrow escape.

At 2336, Dutch Captain P. B. M. Van Straelen's light cruiser JAVA is hit by a torpedo. Soon thereafter, her stern breaks off.

At 2340, the Allied flagship, Dutch Cdr Eugène E. B. Lacomblé's HNMS DE RUYTER is hit by a torpedo from HAGURO and set afire aft. As a result of a complete power failure, the fire can not be extinguished, but DE RUYTER remains afloat for about three hours. Rear Admiral Doorman and 344 crewmen are killed. At 2345, JAVA sinks taking down 512 crewmembers including Captain van Straelen. HOUSTON and PERTH retire to Batavia (Djakarta), Java. [3]

28 February 1942:
At 1900, after refueling, HOUSTON and PERTH sortie for Tjilatjap via the Sunda Strait. At 2215, they attack Japanese troop transports screened only by destroyers HARUSAME, HATAKAZE and FUBUKI. The destroyers make smoke to mask the transports. FUBUKI charges and launches a salvo of torpedoes at HOUSTON and PERTH.

At 2300, the Western Support Force's MIKUMA and MOGAMI, destroyer SHIKINAMI, Third Escort Force's light cruiser NATORI and destroyers SHIRAKUMO, MURAKUMO, SHIRAYUKI, HATSUYUKI and ASAKAZE arrive and engage HOUSTON and PERTH with gunfire and torpedoes.

During the battle, the Japanese fire about 90 torpedoes. Post-battle analyses indicate that MOGAMI's and FUBUKI's torpedoes probably sank five Japanese transports including RYUJO MARU, carrying the commander of the invading 16th Army, LtGen Imamura Hitoshi. Imamura jumps into the sea, but survives.

At 2308, torpedoes strike both HOUSTON and PERTH.

1 March 1942:
A fourth torpedo hits PERTH. At 0025, she sinks about three miles ENE of St. Nicholas Point, Java at 05-51-42S, 106-07-52E. At 0045, HOUSTON sinks NW of Pandjang Island at 05-48-45S, 106-07-55E.

At 0850, CruDiv 5's NACHI and HAGURO with destroyers YAMAKAZE and KAWAKAZE sight damaged cruiser HMS EXETER, destroyers HMS ENCOUNTER and USS POPE (DD-225) that are enroute to the Sunda Strait from Surabaya. At 1150, the Support Force's ASHIGARA and MYOKO with destroyers AKEBONO and INAZUMA also sight and exchange fire with the EXETER group. At 1245, NACHI and HAGURO also open fire on EXETER.

At 1250, EXETER is hit by shells, set afire and goes dead in water. AKEBONO and INAZUMA launch 18 torpedoes. At 1330, EXETER sinks. MYOKO and ASHIGARA damage LtCdr E. V. St. J. Morgan's destroyer HMS ENCOUNTER by a near miss from an 8-inch salvo. ENCOUNTER's Chief Engineer reports that repairs will take two hours. Surrounded and motionless with only one gun firing, Morgan orders his ship scuttled and her crew to abandon ship. At 1335, ENCOUNTER rolls over and sinks. [4]

Old destroyer POPE escapes the engagement with the cruisers, only to be sunk at 1540 in attacks by aircraft from CHITOSE, MIZUHO and RYUJO. [5]

That same day, LtCdr W. G. Chapple's USS PERMIT (SS-178) sights "a heavy cruiser, two light cruisers and several destroyers" N of Surabaya. In fact, this may be NACHI and HAGURO. Chapple makes an approach and fires three torpedoes at a destroyer from only 600 yds – but misses.

NACHI and HAGURO depart the area. NACHI has over 90 Allied naval POWs aboard. These are eventually transfered to destroyer YAMAKAZE before being put ashore at Makassar.

3 March 1942:
NACHI arrives at Kendari, then departs for Makassar.

10 March 1942:
At 1500, NACHI departs Makassar for Mako, Pescadores.

15 March 1942:
Arrives at Mako and departs that day.

17 March 1942:
Arrives at Sasebo. Detaches from CruDiv 5. Refit and equipped as a flagship to operate in northern waters.

7 April 1942:
Departs Sasebo.

11 April 1942:
Arrives at Akkeshi Bay, Hokkaido.

15 April 1942:
Departs Akkeshi.

16 April 1942:
Arrives at Muroran.

18 April 1942:
Departs Muroran with HOKAZE.

25 April 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

29 April 1942:
NACHI is reassigned from CruDiv 5 to Vice Admiral Hosogaya Boshiro's (former CO of MUTSU) Fifth Fleet as his flagship. Departs Yokosuka.

3 May 1942:
Arrives at Akkeshi.

6 May 1942:
Departs Akkeshi. Cruises E of the Kuriles. NACHI and light cruiser TAMA tow damaged oiler SHIRIYA.

12 May 1942:
Arrives at Akkeshi, departs that day.

15 May 1942:
Arrives at Ominato. Refit.

26 May 1942: Operation "MI" - The Battle of Midway:
The NACHI departs Ominato for the Aleutians as flagship of Vice Admiral Hosogaya's Main Body with destroyers INAZUMA and IKAZUCHI, oilers FUJISAN MARU and NISSAN MARU and three cargo ships. Accompanies Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Kakuta Kakuji's (former CO of NAGATO) Second Mobile Force, Carrier Striking Force's CarDiv 4's JUNYO and RYUJO, CruDiv 4's TAKAO and MAYA and destroyers AKEBONO, USHIO, SHIOKAZE and SAZANAMI. NACHI covers a convoy bound for the invasion of Kiska and later supports attacks against Attu Island.

2 June 1942:
Arrives at Paramushiro.

3 June 1942: Operation "AL" - The Invasion of the Aleutians:
Departs Paramushiro. The Second Mobile Force detaches and launches air attacks against American installations in the Aleutians at Dutch Harbor and Unalaska Island.

6 June 1942:
The Second Mobile Force rejoins the Northern Force to cover the invasion of Attu and Kiska Islands. BatDiv 3/1's HIEI and KONGO, carrier ZUIHO, seaplane carrier KAMIKAWA MARU detach from the Midway Force with Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Abe Hiroaki's (former CO of FUSO) CruDiv 8's TONE and CHIKUMA. Joins the Second Mobile Force SW of Aleutians. NACHI cruises S of Attu.

23 June 1942:
Returns to Ominato.

28 June 1942:
Departs Ominato. Covers a second reinforcement convoy to Kiska, Aleutians. Patrols SW of Kiska in anticipation of American counter-attack with CarDiv 4, CruDiv 5's HAGURO and MYOKO, CruDiv 21's KISO and TAMA, light cruiser ABUKUMA with DesDiv 4's ARASHI, MAIKAZE, HAGIKAZE and NOWAKI, DesDiv 7's USHIO and SAZANAMI, DesDiv 9's ASAGUMO, MINEGUMO and NATSUGUMO, DesDiv 10's AKIGUMO, KAZAGUMO, MAKIGUMO and YUGUMO and DesDiv 17's URAKAZE. Cruises S of Attu with CruDiv 5 until 7 July.

14 July 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka. Refit. That day, NACHI is reassigned to the Fifth Fleet's CruDiv 21 with KISO and TAMA.

24-30 July 1942:
Drydocked at Yokosuka Navy Yard.

2 August 1942:
Departs Yokosuka for Paramushiro.

6 August 1942:
Arrives at Paramushiro.

12 August 1942:
Departs Paramushiro.

16 August 1942:
Arrives at Ominato.

29 August 1942:
Departs Ominato.

2 September 1942:
Arrives at Paramushiro.

3 September 1942:
Departs Paramushiro.

18 September 1942:
Arrives at Ominato. ABUKUMA and KISO also arrive at Ominato.

30 September 1942:
Sorties from Ominato after an erroneous report is received of the presence of American forces. The mission is aborted.

2 October 1942:
Arrives at Ominato.

22 October 1942:
Departs Ominato.

26 October 1942:
Arrives at Paramushiro.

6 November 1942:
Arrives at Ominato.

16 November 1942:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Sone Akira (44)(former CO of MOGAMI) is appointed the CO. Rear Admiral Kiyota is later reassigned as ComCruDiv 14.

19 November 1942:
At 1745, anchors at Otaru.

20 November 1942:
At 0840, departs Otaru.

23 November 1942:
At 0620, anchors at Kakumabetsu, Paramushiro Island. At 1400, departs.

28 November 1942:
At 0635, NACHI anchors at Kakumabetsu, departing for Ominato at 1200.

12 January 1943:
At 0715, arrives at Ominato.

13 January 1943:
Departs Ominato for paramushiro.

17 January 1943:
Arrives at Paramushiro.

24 January 1943:
Kabutosan, Paramushiro. Oiler TEIYO MARU refuels NACHI.

29 January 1943:
Departs for Sasebo.

1 February 1943:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

3 February 1943:
Departs Yokosuka.

5 February 1943:
Arrives at Sasebo. Refit.

27 February 1943:
Departs Sasebo.

4 March 1943:
Arrives at Paramushiro.

5 March 1943:
NACHI is refueled by oiler TEIYO MARU.

7 March 1943:
Departs Kashiwabara, Paramushiro with MAYA, light crusiers ABUKUMA, TAMA and KISO, destroyers IKAZUCHI, INAZUMA, USUGUMO, HATSUSHIMO and WAKABA to escort converted cruiser ASAKA MARU and transport SAKITO MARU.

10 March 1943:
Arrives at Attu. KISO and the transports land supplies, while the other units patrol.

13 March 1943:
Returns to Paramushiro.

17 March 1943:

23 March 1943:
Departs Paramushiro for Attu escorting the three-ship reinforcement convoy RO-21 (ASAKA, SAKITO and SANKO MARUs) with MAYA, TAMA and ABUKUMA, DesDiv 6's IKAZUCHI and INAZUMA, DesDiv 21's HATSUSHIMO and WAKABA and the Fifth Fleet's USUGUMO.

26 March 1943:The Battle of the Komandorski Islands:
North Pacific, off the Kamchatka Peninsula, Siberia. Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Charles H. McMorris (former CO of SAN FRANSCISCO, CA-38) Task Group 16.6's USS RICHMOND (CL-9)(F), SALT LAKE CITY (CA-25) and destroyers BAILEY (DD-492), DALE (DD-353), MONAGHAN (DD-354) and COGHLAN (DD-606) engage Vice Admiral Hosogaya's squadron.

On contact with the Americans, NACHI commences preparations to launch her three floatplanes. At 0542, before they can be catapulted, NACHI's main battery opens fire. The gun blast damages two Mitsubishi F1M2 "Pete" spotter planes (Nos. 2-3), which are jettisoned. The remaining Aichi E13A1 "Jake" No. 1 on the port catapult is launched.

Between 0544 and 0546, NACHI launches eight Type 93 "Long Lance" torpedoes at McMorris' force, but scores no hits. In a four-hour running gun battle, SALT LAKE CITY and BAILEY are damaged by gunfire. The other American destroyers are not damaged. Five 12.7-cm shells hit NACHI around 0550; fourteen sailors are killed and 27 wounded. NACHI's No. 1 gun turret is knocked out. More importantly, McMorris succeeds in causing the Japanese to abort their resupply mission.

28 March 1943:
Returns to Paramushiro with the convoy. Disgraced, Hosogaya is relieved of command and forced to retire. Vice Admiral Kawase Shiro (former XO of KIRISHIMA) assumes command of the Fifth Fleet.

31 March 1943:
Departs Paramushiro for Yokosuka with MAYA, DesDiv 21's WAKABA and HATSUSHIMO.

3 May 1943:
At Yokosuka. Battle damage repairs. Eight additional Type 96 25-mm AA guns are installed.

11 May 1943: American Operation "Landcrab" - The Invasion of Attu, Aleutians:
Rear Admiral (later Admiral) Thomas C. Kinkaid's (former CO of INDIANAPOLIS, CA-35) Task Force 16, covered by Rear Admiral Francis W. Rockwell's (former CO of THATCHER, DD-162) Task Force 51, lands elements of the Army's 4th and 7th Infantry Divisions under the command of Maj Gen Eugene M. Landrum at Holtz Bay and Massacre Bay that later capture the island.

Departs Yokosuka.

15 May 1943:
Arrives at Paramushiro. Remains there for the next three months.

16 May 1943:
Kataoka Bay, Paramushiro. Oiler TEIYO MARU refuels NACHI

21 May 1943: Operation "KE" - The Evacuation of Kiska:
The Imperial General Headquarters decides to evacuate the garrison at Kiska Island, Aleutians.

10-15 July 1943:
Sorties with MAYA to support the Kiska withdrawal.

15 July 1943:
Arrives at Paramushiro.

13 August 1943:
Departs Paramushiro.

13 August 1943:
Refit at Ominato. A Type 21 Mod. 3 experimental air-search radar with an A7 type antenna is installed.

6 September 1943:
Departs Ominato for Paramushiro. That night, LtCdr (later Admiral) Ignatius J. Galantin's USS HALIBUT (SS-232) makes a radar contact astern at 9,500 yds. Galantin goes to full speed. HALIBUT is making 18 knots, but the contact continues to close the range. Galantin assumes his target is a destroyer. He crash-dives to radar depth and makes a setup. At 2125, at a range of 2,000 yds, he fires his four stern tubes in position 42-07N, 142-29E. Two of the torpedoes hit NACHI on her starboard side below the rear funnel, but both are duds and cause only minor flooding.

9 September 1943:
Arrives safely at Paramushiro.

10 September 1943:
Captain (Vice Admiral, posthumously) Shibuya Shiro (44)(former CO of ABUKUMA) is appointed the CO. Captain Sone is later reassigned as the Chief of the IJN's Meteorological Service.

25 October 1943:
Departs Paramushiro for Akkeshi Bay.

27 October 1943:
Arrives at Akkeshi Bay.

1 November 1943:
Departs Akkeshi Bay for Ominato, arrives later that day.

20 November 1943:
Departs Ominato for Sasebo with DesDiv 9's USUGUMO.

22 November 1943:
Arrives at Sasebo Navy Yard for a refit.

9 December 1943-15 January 1944:
Dry-docked at Sasebo Navy Yard for an overhaul, simultaneously receiving the second stage wartime modifications. The existing Type 21 Mod. 3 air-search radar set is replaced by a Type 21 Mod. 2 with an A6 type antenna.

22 January 1944:
Departs Sasebo for Hashirajima anchorage.

23 January 1944:
Arrives at Hashirajima.

6 February 1944:
Arrives at No. 3 Fuel Depot at Tokuyama to refuel.

7-9 February 1944:
Departs Tokuyama for Ominato in company of USUGUMO.

29 February 1944:
Kawauchi harbor, Mutsu Bay (Aomori Prefecture). Oiler TEIYO MARU refuels NACHI.

4 March 1944:
Mutsu Bay. TEIYO MARU refuels NACHI.

10 March 1944:
Ominato. TEIYO MARU refuels NACHI.

2 April 1944:
Guardship duty at Ominato with ASHIGARA. Remains there the next two and one half months.

2 May 1944:

8 May 1944:
Kawauchi Bay. NACHI is refueled by oiler TEIYO MARU.

29 May 1944:
Kawauchi Bay. TEIYO MARU refuels NACHI.

19 June 1944:
Departs Ominato with ASHIGARA, DesDiv 7's AKEBONO, KASUMI and USHIO and DesDiv 18's SHIRANUI.

21 June 1944:
Refit at Yokosuka.

29 June-1 July 1944:
Departs Yokosuka for Ominato with ASHIGARA and DesDiv 7.

1-31 July 1944:
Resumes guardship duty with ASHIGARA at Ominato.

31 July 1944:
Departs Ominato for Kure with ASHIGARA, DesDiv 7 and DesDiv 18.

2 August 1944:
Arrives at Kure. Training.

20 August 1944:
At Kure. Captain (Rear Admiral, posthumously) Kanooka Enpei (49)(former naval aide to Prime Minister Tojo) is appointed the CO. Captain Shibuya is later assigned as the Commander 101st Escort Group and KIA aboard KASHII on 12 Jan 1945.

15 September 1944:
At Kure. Two twin-mount and 20 single-mount Type 96 25-mm AA guns are installed bringing NACHI's total 25-mm AA suite to 48 barrels.

14 October 1944:
A Type 13 air-search radar is fitted.

14 October 1944:
Departs Kure in Vice Admiral Shima Kiyohide's (former CO of OI) CruDiv 21 with ASHIGARA and Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Masatomi Kimura's (former CO of SUZUYA) DesRon 1's light cruiser ABUKUMA and DesDiv 7's AKEBONO, KASUMI and USHIO, DesDiv 18's SHIRANUI and Des21's WAKABA, HATSUSHIMO and HATSUHARU.

15 October 1944:
Bungo Straits. Cdr Thomas L. Wogan's USS BESUGO (SS-321) spots Shima's fast moving force at 7,500 yards, but is unable to close. Wogan reports the sighting to COMSUBPAC at Pearl Harbor.

16 October 1944:
Shima's force arrives at Amami-Oshima.

18 October 1944:
Departs Amami-Oshima with CruDiv 21 and DesRon 1.

W of Okinawa. At about 1030, Shima's force is sighted by LtCdr Orme C. Robbins' USS STERLET (SS-392) at 15 miles. Robbins closes to four miles, but is unable to get closer in the daylight. He reports the sighting to COMSUBPAC.

S of Okinawa. That evening, Shima's force is sighted by LtCdr Frederick J. Harlfingers' USS TRIGGER (SS-392) at nine miles. Harlfinger closes to five miles, but is driven off by an aircraft and a Japanese submarine that fires a torpedo at TRIGGER.

20 October 1944:
Formosa Strait. At 0400, LtCdr Richard H. O'Kane's USS TANG (SS-306) picks up Shima's zigzagging force now making 19 knots. O'Kane tracks the force until dawn, but cannot close.

Shima's force arrives at Mako, Pescadores.

21 October 1944:
Shima's force departs Mako for Manila, but is diverted to Coron, Philippines.

22 October 1944:
Luzon Strait. At about 0100, LtCdr James H. Ashley's USS SEADRAGON (SS-194) sights Shima's force at 30,000 yards. Ashley misidentifies the force as "a carrier, two light cruisers and six destroyers." Ashley signals the sighting to Cdr Edward N. Blakely in SHARK (SS-314), commander of the wolf pack, and LtCdr Robert F. Sellars' BLACKFISH (SS-221). Ashley closes to 3,000 yds on the surface and fires his four stern tubes by radar bearings at the "carrier" and an overlapping cruiser at 21-57N, 118-14E. Ashley then takes SEADRAGON deep and evades. Later, he claims hiots on both ships, but postwar these are substantiated.

At 0855, LtCdr Richard W. Peterson's submerged USS ICEFISH (SS-367) spots a destroyer, then sights a task force of two NACHI-class heavy cruisers, escorted by three destroyers, bearing 064 T, course 160 T, speed 16-18 kts. ICEFISH cannot gain a position closer than 8,000 yds and is unable to attack. In heavy seas, Peterson surfaces to get off a contact report, but is forced under by Japanese planes before he can get off a report. Later that night, he tries again and is successful.

23 October 1944:
Arrives safely at Coron.

24 October 1944 - Operation "SHO-I-GO"(Victory) - The Battle of Leyte Gulf:
Departs Coron to support Vice Admiral Nishimura Shoji's First Raiding Force's BatDiv 2's YAMASHIRO, FUSO and the heavy cruiser MOGAMI.

Surigao Strait. At about 0420 that night, ASHIGARA and NACHI pick up two targets on their surface-search radars. Vice Admiral Shima orders a torpedo attack and the cruisers turn to starboard to bring their tubes to bear. At 0427, each cruiser launches eight torpedoes by radar, but they obtain no hits.

At 0429, NACHI collides with MOGAMI that is retiring southward. MOGAMI is holed starboard side above the waterline. NACHI's bow is rent portside and as she pulls clear, she begins to flood. Shima orders his force to retire.[7]

25 October 1944:
Arrives at Coron and refuels with ASHIGARA.

26 October 1944:

27 October 1944:
Departs Coron for Manila in company of ASHIGARA, escorted by DesDiv 7. ASHIGARA detaches for Palawan.

28 October 1944:
Arrives at Manila Bay. Drydocked at No. 103 Repair Facility at Cavite for repair of her bow plates.

29 October 1944:
NACHI and KUMANO are attacked by TG 38.2's carrier planes. A small caliber bomb hits NACHI on her catapult deck, detonating two torpedoes in an belowdecks storage. 53 crewmen are killed by the ensuing explosion and strafing attacks. This damage causes further delays to completing her temporary repairs.

2 November 1944:
Repairs to the bow are completed. Undocked and scheduled to depart for Japan on 6 November. Transferred to an auxiliary anchorage off Luneta, Manila and camouflaged with foliage.

5 November 1944:
Early in the morning Vice Admiral Shima departs NACHI for a staff conference with Vice Admiral Ito Seiichi, the current Vice Chief of the NGS.

After 0615, TG 38.3's USS ESSEX (CV-9), LEXINGTON (CV-16) and TICONDEROGA (CV-14), steaming 150 miles NE of Manila, launch several successive strikes against the shipping in Manila Bay area. After the first strike from ESSEX and TICONDEROGA hits the airfields in that area around 0735, NACHI, followed by AKEBONO, departs the anchorage for the safety of the open sea, working up to 28 knots.

NE of Corregidor Island, NACHI is attacked by VB-15 Curtiss SB2C-3 "Helldivers" and VT-15 Grumman TBF/TBM-1C "Avengers" from USS ESSEX, claiming 3 bomb and 3 torpedo hits. Shortly thereafter, Air Group 19 CO and on-scene aerial strike coordinator Cdr Theodore H. Winters, Jr. (USNA '35) observes that the cruiser is only lightly smoking and still maneuvering at high speed. He directs a follow-on attack by strike No. 3 of VB-19 and VT-19 from USS LEXINGTON, claiming 4 bomb, 1 torpedo, and 4 rocket hits. As a result of these strikes, the radically maneuvering cruiser receives one 1,000-lb GP bomb hit between the forward turrets Nos. 2 and 3, causing a serious fire. In all likelihood she receives at least one torpedo hit to starboard, between the bridge and the turret No. 3 during the same attack, flooding the forward magazines, the forward main battery plotting room, the generator compartment and the forward engine room.

AKEBONO (identified as a "TAKANAMI-class DD) is likewise attacked and damaged by VF-15 Grumman F6F-3 "Hellcats".

Altough temporarily immobilized, by 1400 NACHI manages to get underway, making 7-8 kts. At 1445, she is attacked by strike No. 4 from LEXINGTON, obtaining four bomb hits. VB-19's CO, Lt Donald F. Banker (USNA '40), is shot down with his SB2C-3 during that attack. Next, VT-19 "Avengers" score five hits to the port side of the cruiser that blast her into three pieces. One torpedo blows off her bow that sinks at once, another sets off her aft magazine that severs her stern. It upends but remains floating. The other three torpedoes hit her amidships.[8]

Vice Admiral Shima watches from ashore as his flagship is blown apart. The survivors attempt to reach Corregidor despite strafing attacks, clinging to wreckage and damage control timber. At 1630, several destroyers and the hospital ship MURO MARU are dispatched from Manila to rescue them.

At 1450, the central portion of NACHI sinks in 102 feet of water about twelve nautical miles NE of Corregidor at approximately 14-31N, 120-44E. 807 crewmen are killed including Captain Kanooka and 74 officers of the Fifth Fleet's staff. 220 men survive the blasts and the strafing. KASUMI and USHIO rescue NACHI's survivors. USHIO tows damaged destroyer AKEBONO, hit by two bombs and set afire, to shore.[9]

Captain Kanooka is promoted to Rear Admiral, posthumously.

23 November 1944:
50 NACHI survivors are embarked on MANJU MARU (ex-SANTOS MARU) at Corregidor along with another 2,000 soldiers. On 25 November, she is sunk by USS ATULE (SS-403).

20 January 1945:
Removed from the Navy List.

March 1945:
Divers from USS CHANTICLEER (ASR-7) explore the wreck and salvage several radar consoles, secret documents, maps of Japanese fortifications on Luzon, as well as some two million yen. In all 296 dives are made.

Authors' Notes:
[1] Mt. Niitaka, located in Formosa (now Taiwan), is the highest point in the Japanese Empire at the time.

[2] HMS JUPITER sank about 10 miles off the coast of Java in only about 50 feet of water. As a result of her easy accessibility, postwar she is heavily salved by Indonesian nationals.

[3] On 1 December 2002, a group of divers, including Australian photo-jounalist Kevin Denlay, operating off MV EMPRESS out of Singapore using side-scan sonar discover DE RUYTER and JAVA at a depth of about 225 feet off Bawean Island in the Java Sea.

[4] On 21 February 2007, a group of divers operating from MV EMPRESS out of Singapore, again including Australian photo-journalist Kevin Denlay, locate the wrecks of British heavy cruiser HMS EXETER and destroyer HMS ENCOUNTER in the Java Sea. The two warships are found at a depth of about 60m/200ft, 90 miles north of Bawean Island, about 350 nautical miles from Sunda Strait. EXETER lays on her starboard. Her faithful consort ENCOUNTER rests about two miles away. About 50 of EXETER's crew were killed, while 650 were made prisoners of war. Of these, 152 died in Japanese PoW camps. About eight of ENCOUNTER's crew were killed and 149 were made POWs, of whom 38 died in captivity.

[5] In December 2008, the remains of USS POPE (DD-225) was located in the Java Sea in approx 105 feet/32 meters of water by owner/skipper Vidar Skoglie's dive vessel MV EMPRESS operating out of Singapore. The old destroyer appears to have been found earlier by Indonesian salvage divers and very little remains but a rusted iron skeleton.

[6] Contrary to the American claims, the single "Jake" from NACHI was not shot down during the battle. It carried out spotting duties throughout the action, was targeted by USS MONAGHAN, RICHMOND and DALE, and finally flew to Attu, but crashed on landing. About a month later, its crew returned to Japan by submarine. The floating wreck of the IJNAF floatplane spotted from USS SALT LAKE CITY was on all likelihood one of the "Petes" from NACHI.

[7] Readers interested in more about this collision should see "The NACHI ~ MOGAMI Collision: A Study in the Fragility of History"

[8] In all, TG 38.3 fliers were credited with nine torpedo, 20 bomb and 16 rocket hits.

[9] In 2000, Kevin Denlay conducted a detailed search for the wreck of NACHI and discovered that the commonly published data (Lat/Longs, etc) for the wreck site, which have her sinking west or southwest of Corregidor, were incorrect. Data from USS CHANTICLEER's deck log proved that the position where she was anchored over the NACHI wreck in 1945 was to the northeast of Corregidor, well inside Manila Bay, at approximately this location. Unfortunately, given that the relatively shallow water where NACHI sunk is now a shipping lane, it appears the remains of the wreck have been salvaged and completely removed over the intervening years because of the navigation hazard it would have posed to marine traffic transiting across Manila Bay.

Special thanks for sharing his research of air groups involved in the sinking of NACHI go to our reader Matt Robins, whose grandfather Lt(jg) Jack Scott of VB-19 was credited with a bomb hit on NACHI during USS LEXINGTON's strike against the cruiser.

Special thanks for assistance in researching the IJN officers mentioned in this TROM go to Mr. Jean-François Masson of Canada. Thanks also go to Randy Stone of the United States, Andrew Obluski of Poland and "Adm. Gurita" of the Netherlands.

Thanks also go to the late John Whitman and to Fontessa-san of Japan for info about 1937 troop movements and to Don Kehn, Jr. of Texas for info in Rev 15.

- Bob Hackett and Sander Kingsepp.

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