(TAMA in 1942)

IJN Light Cruiser TAMA:
Tabular Record of Movement

© 1997-2018 Bob Hackett and Sander Kingsepp
Revision 9

10 August 1918:
Laid down at Mitsubishi's Nagasaki shipyard.

10 February 1920:
Launched and named TAMA.

1 June 1920:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Kawai Taizo (27)(former ComDesDiv 24) is appointed the Chief Equipping Officer (CEO).

29 January 1921:
Completed and commissioned in the IJN. Attached to Kure Naval District. Captain Kawai is the CO.

1 December 1921:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Hyakutake Gengo (30)(former instructor at Naval Academy) is appointed the CO.

5 March 1923:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Tanaka Isamu (30)(former CO of SUNOSAKI) is appointed the CO.

20 October 1923:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Ikeda Tanin (30)(former CO of TSUSHIMA) is appointed the CO.

10 January 1924:
Captain (later Admiral) Oikawa Koshiro (31)(former CO of KINU) is appointed the CO.

1 December 1924:
Placed in 3rd reserve at Kure. Captain Aoki Kunitaro (31)(former CO of HAYATOMO) is appointed the CO.

10 July 1925:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Idemitsu Manbei (33)(former CO of NOJIMA) is appointed the CO.

22 August 1925:
San Francisco. TAMA arrives carrying the body of the late U.S. Ambassador Edgar A. Bancroft, who died on 27 July in the summer retreat town of Karuizawa.

20 October 1925:
Captain Yamamoto Tokihiko (31)(current CO of SETTSU) is appointed the CO of TAMA as additional duty.

1 December 1925:
Captain Matsui Risaburo (32)(former CO of KITAKAMI/SUNOSAKI) is appointed the CO.

20 May 1926:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Ikenaka Kenichi (31)(former naval attaché to Soviet Union) is appointed the CO.

27 October 1927:
Attached to Yokosuka Naval District. Reassigned to Maizuru port office as a training vessel.

1 December 1927:
Captain Seimiya Yoshitaka (33)(former CO of KITAKAMI/ASO) is appointed the CO.

20 August 1928:
Captain (later Admiral) Shimada Shigetaro (32)(former SubDiv 7 staff officer) is appointed the CO.

10 December 1928:
Captain Ishii Jiro (33)(former staff officer at Ominato port office) is appointed the CO.

30 November 1929:
Captain Ono Isao (34)(former CO of KISO) is appointed the CO.

10 November 1930:
Cdr (promoted Captain 1 December; later Rear Admiral) Takahashi Hideo (36)(former CO of HAYATOMO) is appointed the CO.

1 May 1931:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Shimizu Mitsumi (36)(former chief of the Naval Affairs Bureau's 2nd section) is appointed the CO.

14 November 1931:
Cdr (promoted Captain 1 December; later Vice Admiral) Totsuka Michitaro (38)(former staff officer at Sasebo Naval District) is appointed the CO.

11 July 1932:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Yamaguchi Minoru (36)(former NGS staff officer) is appointed the CO.

15 November 1932:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Soejima Daisuke (38)(former XO of NAGATO) is appointed the CO.

15 November 1933:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Ochi Kohei (38)(former naval attaché to Mexico) is appointed the CO.

10 January 1935:
Yokosuka. The German naval attaché in Tokyo, Captain (later Admiral/Knight's Cross) Paul Wenneker is invited by Admiral Suetsugu Nobumasa (former CO of CHIKUMA), CinC, Yokosuka Naval District, to tour TAMA (between 1330 and 1445), battleship KONGO and submarine I-2. In turn, the IJN officers are allowed to inspect the "pocket battleship" ADMIRAL SCHEER. [1]

15 November 1935:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Shimomura Katsumi (39)(former XO of HARUNA) is appointed the CO.

16 March 1936:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Abe Katsuo (40)(former IJN representative at London Naval Conference) is appointed the CO.

16 November 1936:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Shiroya Kiyoshi (40)(former ADC to the chief of the NGS) is appointed the CO.

1 November 1937:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Kaneko Shigeji (42)(former instructor at Naval Academy) is appointed the CO.

10 May 1938:
TAMA participates in an amphibious assault on Amoy (Xiamen) with Vice Admiral (later Admiral) Koichi Shiozawa's (32)(former CO of FURUTAKA) 5th Fleet, also consisting of CruDiv 9's MYOKO (F) and CruDiv 10's light cruisers TATSUTA and TENRYU, DesRon 5's light cruiser NAGARA, DesDiv 3's NADAKAZE, SHIMAKAZE, SHIOKAZE, DesDiv 16's KARUKAYA, FUYO and ASAGAO, CarDiv 1's KAGA, DesDiv 29's HAYATE and OITE, SORYU with DesDiv 30's YAYOI and KISARAGI, auxiliary seaplane tender KAMIKAWA MARU, collier MUROTO, CarDiv 3's seaplane tender KAMOI, auxiliaries SHURI, CHOJU, DELHI, EIKO, IKUTA, KAZAN, KURI, HAYA MARUs and DAIICHI MARU No. 8, NANSHIN MARU No. 8, NANSHIN MARU No. 31, TAIKO, YODACHI and auxiliary minelayers ENOSHIMA and ENTO.

At dawn, the 5th Fleet's warships, including TAMA, bombard Ho-tsu, Ni-chin, and Wu-tung and cover an amphibious assault landing by more than 2,000 troops of the Yokosuka, Kure and Sasebo Special Naval Landing Forces (SNLF). At the same time, NE of Xiamen (Amoy), Japanese aircraft from tenders KAMOI and KAMIKAWA MARU bomb bridges, roads, ferries and ships. The poorly equipped Nationalist Chinese 75th Division defenders suffer heavy casualties, are overrun by the SNLFs and withdraw.

12 May 1938:
That night, Chinese forces abandon Amoy to the Japanese.

15 December 1938:
Captain Horiuchi Kaoru (40)(former CO of NIPPONKAI MARU) is appointed the CO.

15 November 1939
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Mori Tomokazu (42)(former CO of ITSUKUSHIMA) is appointed the CO.

1 November 1940
Captain (Rear Admiral, posthumously) Niimi Kazutaka (40)(former ComDesDiv 9) is appointed the CO.

10 September 1941:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Kawabata Masaharu (47)(former division officer of MUTSU) is appointed the CO. TAMA is the flagship of CruDiv 21 with light cruiser KISO in Vice Admiral Hosogaya Boshiro's Fifth Fleet.

2 December 1941:
Akkeshi, Hokkaido Island. TAMA and KISO are camouflaged. White patches are added to their superstructures and their bows and sterns are painted white. The remainder of the ships' superstructures and hulls retain their original colors: Yokosuka Naval Arsenal dark gray for TAMA and Maizuru Naval Arsenal dark gray for KISO.

4 December 1941:
TAMA and KISO depart Akkeshi.

7 December 1941:
TAMA and KISO depart Matsuwa Shima, Kuriles and patrol the area. Both cruisers' hulls are damaged by the heavy weather.

21 December 1941:
TAMA and KISO arrive at Ominato, Japan.

25 December 1941:
TAMA and KISO departs Ominato.

26 December 1941:
TAMA and KISO arrive at Yokosuka.

27 December 1941:
Yokosuka. TAMA and KISO are docked together in No. 5 drydock. The cruisers' hulls are repaired and additionally reinforced.

16 January 1942:

21 January 1942:
CruDiv 21 departs Yokosuka.

26 January 1942:
CruDiv 21 arrives at Akkeshi, Hokkaido.

1 February 1942:
CruDiv 21 departs Akkeshi. Patrols in Northern waters.

20 February 1942:
CruDiv 21 arrives at Akkeshi.

4 March 1942:
CruDiv 21 departs Akkeshi.

4 March 1942:
Thirty-eight aircraft of Vice Admiral (later Fleet Admiral) William F. ("Bull") Halsey's Task Force 16's USS ENTERPRISE (CV-6), SALT LAKE CITY (CA-25) and NORTHAMPTON (CA-28) make a dawn raid on Marcus Island, located between Midway and the Bonin Islands - about 1,000 miles from Tokyo.

9 March 1942:
TAMA and KISO arrive at Yokosuka.

10 March 1942:
Drydocked. Refit.

11 March 1942:
The First Fleet's HYUGA and ISE sortie from Hashirajima to search for Halsey.

12 March 1942:
Undocked. In response to the alarm, TAMA and KISO and destroyers sortie from Yokosuka to search for Halsey. They find nothing.

19 March 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

26 March 1942:
CruDiv 21 departs Yokosuka.

5 April 1942:
CruDiv 21 arrives at Akkeshi.

18 April 1942: The First Bombing of Japan:
Halsey's Task Force 16.2's USS HORNET (CV-8), VINCENNES (CA-44), NASHVILLE (CL-43), oiler CIMARRON (AO-22) and destroyers GWIN (DD-433), MEREDITH (DD-434), GRAYSON (DD-435) and MONSSEN (DD-436), accompanied by Task Force 16.1's USS ENTERPRISE (CV-6), SALT LAKE CITY (CA-25), NORTHAMPTON (CA-28), oiler SABINE (AO-25) and the destroyers BALCH (DD-363), BENHAM (DD-397), ELLET (DD-398) and FANNING (DD-385) approach Japan. The carriers and cruisers approach to within 668 nautical miles of the mainland.

Led by Lt Col (later General/Medal of Honor) James H. Doolittle, 16 Army B-25 "Mitchell" twin-engine bombers of the 17th Bomb Group take off from Captain (later Admiral) Marc A. Mitscher's carrier HORNET and strike targets in Tokyo, Yokohama, Osaka, Nagoya and Kobe.

TAMA and KISO depart Akkeshi and join other IJN heavy units in another unsuccessful pursuit of Halsey.

24 April 1942:
TAMA and KISO arrive at Akkeshi.

25 April 1942:
Depart Akkeshi.

26 April 1942:
Arrive at Muroran.

30 April 1942:
Depart Muroran.

1 May 1942:
Arrive at Akkeshi.

4 May 1942:
Depart Akkeshi on patrol.

10 May 1942:
Arrives at Akkeshi. Departs that day with NACHI to protect fleet oiler SHIRIYA whose steering gear had broken down.

16 May 1942:
Arrives at Ominato. During her stay, TAMA's camouflage white patches are painted over and the ship is restored to her orignal Yokosuka Naval Arsenal dark gray color.

28 May 1942: Operation "AL" - The Seizure of Attu and Kiska:
Departs Mutsu Bay, Kawauchi in Vice Admiral Hosogaya's Northern Force with Captain Ono's Kiska Invasion Force: CruDiv 21, destroyers HIBIKI, AKATSUKI and HOKAZE, auxillary cruiser ASAKA MARU, seaplane tender KIMIKAWA MARU and transports HAKUSAN MARU and KUMAKAWA MARU.

CruDiv 21 accompanies Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Omori Sentaro's (former CO of ISE) Attu Invasion Force's light cruiser ABUKUMA, DesDiv 21's HATSUHARU, HATSUSHIMO, WAKABA and NENOHI, transport KINUGASA MARU, minelayer MAGANE MARU and the Main Body: Fifth Fleet's flagship NACHI, DesDiv 6's INAZUMA and IKAZUCHI, oilers FUJISAN MARU and NISSAN MARU, three cargo ships and Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Kakuta Kakuji's (former CO of YAMASHIRO) Carrier Striking Force: CarDiv 4's JUNYO and RYUJO, CruDiv 4/2's TAKAO and MAYA, DesDiv 3's SHIOKAZE and DesDiv 7's AKEBONO, SAZANAMI and USHIO.

1 June 1942:
The Invasion Force arrives at Paramushiro.

1 June 1942:
Departs Paramushiro.

7 June 1942:
The Invasion Force lands troops on Kiska.

13 June 1942:
Departs Kiska for an area to the SW.

23 June 1942:
Arrives at Mutsu Bay, Kawauchi.

28 June 1942:
CruDiv 21's TAMA and KISO depart Kawauchi for the Aleutians with DesRon 1's ABUKUMA and Rear Admiral Kakuta's Second Mobile Force: CarDiv 4's JUNYO and the RYUJO reinforced by CruDiv 5's HAGURO, MYOKO and NACHI, DesDiv 4's ARASHI, MAIKAZE, HAGIKAZE and the NOWAKI, DesDiv 7's USHIO, SAZANAMI, DesDiv 9's ASAGUMO, MINEGUMO and NATSUGUMO, DesDiv 10's AKIGUMO, KAZAGUMO, MAKIGUMO and the YUGUMO and DesDiv 17's URAKAZE.

Covers the second reinforcement convoy to Kiska, Aleutians, then patrols SW of Kiska in anticipation of an American counter-attack.

7 July 1942:
Departs the area.

16 July 1942:
CruDiv 21 arrives at Yokosuka.

16 July-2 August 1942:
Refit at Yokosuka.

1 August 1942:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Kanome Zensuke (44)(former Fifth Fleet staff officer) is appointed the CO. Captain Kawabata later becomes the CEO/CO of KATSURAGI.

2 August 1942:
Departs Ominato. Patrols S of Kiska thereafter. Covers the transfer of the Attu garrison to Kiska.

16 August 1942.
CruDiv 21 arrives at Ominato.

21 October 1942:
CruDiv 21 departs Ominato.

25 October 1942:
CruDiv 21 enters Kashiwabara, Paramushiro Island to embark part of the Yonekawa Force.

27 October 1942:
CruDiv 21 departs Paramushiro with ABUKUMA, escorted by DesDiv 21's HATSUSHIMO and WAKABA carrying the Yonekawa Detachment to Attu.

29 October 1942:
Arrives at Attu. Disembarks troops.

30 October 1942:
CruDiv 21 departs Attu for Paramushiro.

1 November 1942:
At Paramushiro as guard ship.

4 November 1942:
Arrives at Ominato. Training thereafter.

14 November 1942:
Departs Ominato.

15 November 1942:
Arrives at Otaru.

17 November 1942:
Departs Otaru.

21 November 1942:
Arrives at Kataoka, Shimushu Island. Embarks army troops and supplies.

24 November 1942:
Departs Kataoka.

27 November 1942:
Off-loads troops at Kiska and departs.

2 December 1942:
Arrives at Kataoka. Auxiliary oiler TEIYO MARU refuels TAMA. Remains there for the next month.

30 December 1942:
TAMA is refueled by auxiliary oiler TEIYO MARU.

6 January 1943:
Departs Kataoka.

9 January 1943:
Arrives at Yokosuka. Refit.

6 February 1943:
Departs Yokosuka.

9 February 1943:
Arrives at Ominato. Guard ship duties thereafter.

22 February 1943:
Departs Ominato.

27 February 1943:
Arrives at Kataoka.

2 March 1943:
Departs Kataoka.

4 March 1943:
Arrives at Paramushiro.

6 March 1943:
Kabutosan, Paramushiro. TAMA is refueled by auxiliary oiler TEIYO MARU.

7 March 1943:
Departs Kashiwabara, Paramushiro. The converted cruiser ASAKA MARU and transport SAKITO MARU bound for Attu are escorted by the Fifth Fleet's cruisers NACHI (F), MAYA, ABUKUMA, TAMA, KISO and destroyer USUGUMO with DesDiv 6's IKAZUCHI and INAZUMA and DesDiv 21's HATSUSHIMO and WAKABA.

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

13 March 1943:
All units arrive safely at Kashiwabara, Paramushiro.

17 March 1943:
Departs Paramushiro. Arrives at Kataoka Bay.

18 March 1943:
Arrives at Ominato.

23 March 1943:
Departs Paramushiro towards Attu with Vice Admiral Hosogaya's Fifth Fleet cruisers NACHI (F) and MAYA, light cruiser ABUKUMA and destroyers IKAZUCHI, INAZUMA, USUGUMO, HATSUSHIMO and WAKABA escorting a three-ship reinforcement convoy including SANKO MARU.

26 March 1943: The Battle of the Komandorski Islands:
N Pacific. Off the Kamchatka Peninsula, Siberia. Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Charles H. McMorris' Task Group 16.6's USS RICHMOND (CL-9), SALT LAKE CITY (CA-25) and destroyers destroyers BAILEY (DD-492), DALE (DD-353), MONAGHAN (DD-354) and COGHLAN (DD-606) engage NACHI, MAYA, ABUKUMA, TAMA, HATSUSHIMO and WAKABA escorting Convoy "D" carrying troops and supplies for the garrison on Attu.

In a four-hour running gun and torpedo battle, SALT LAKE CITY and destroyer BAILEY are damaged by gunfire. The other destroyers are not damaged. TAMA is hit twice by 5-inch shells and NACHI is hit five times. McMorris' attack causes the Japanese to abort their resupply mission.

28 March 1943:
Arrives at Paramushiro with the convoy. Disgraced by retreating from an inferior force, Hosogaya is relieved of command and forced to retire. Vice Admiral Kawase Shiro (former XO of KIRISHIMA) assumes command of the Fifth Fleet.

28 March 1943:
Arrives at Kataoka. Remains there for a month as a guardship.

29 April 1943:
Departs Kataoka.

4 May 1943:
Arrives at Maizuru for a refit.

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

14 May 1943:

19 May 1943: Operation "KE" - The Evacuation of Kiska:
The Imperial General Headquarters decides to evacuate the garrison at Kiska Island, Aleutians. That same day, TAMA is undocked and departs Maizuru.

23 May 1943:
Arrives at Kataoka. Auxiliary oiler TEIYO MARU refuels TAMA. Remains there for a month as a guardship.

18 June 1943:
Departs Kataoka.

21 June 1943:
Arrives at Ominato.

22 June 1943:
Captain (Rear Admiral, posthumously) Kami Shigenori (48)(former Fifth Fleet staff officer) is appointed the CO.

1 July 1943:
Departs Ominato.

5 July 1943:
Arrives at Paramushiro.

7 July 1943: Operation "KE-GO" - The Evacuation of Kiska.
TAMA's engines are considered too unreliable for her to participate directly in the evacuation. Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Kimura Masatomi's (former CO of SUZUYA) Evacuation Task Force departs Paramushiro that day.

10 July 1943:
TAMA departs Paramushiro to support the operation.

15 July 1943:
The mission is aborted due to weather. TAMA returns to Paramushiro that same day.

22 July 1943:
Departs Paramushiro with Vice Admiral Kawase embarked.

31 July 1943:
Arrives at Paramushiro. Remains as a guardship.

25 August 1943:
Departs Paramushiro.

27 August 1943:
Arrives at Ominato.

30 August 1943:
Departs Ominato.

1 September 1943:
Arrives at Yokosuka. Refit.

12 September 1943:
Departs Yokosuka. Arrives at Ujina.

15 September 1943:
Embarks troops of the IJA's 17th Infantry Division's 107th Infantry and departs Ujina with KISO in troop movment "Tei No. 1".

22 September 1943:
Arrives at Ponape, Caroline Islands. Disembarks troops and departs.

23 September 1943:
Arrives at Truk.

29 September 1943:
Departs Truk with KISO.

5 October 1943:
TAMA and KISO arrive at Kure.

9 October 1943:
Depart Kure.

11 October 1943:
Arrive at Shanghai, China.

12 October 1943:
Embarks 502 troops of the IJA's 17th Division's 54th InfantryRegiment's 2nd Battalion and departs Wusong (Shanghai) with KISO in the first convoy of movement "Tei No. 4".

13 October 1943:
East China Sea. Lookouts aboard LtCdr John A. Moore's USS GRAYBACK (SS-208) spot TAMA and KISO making 16 knots. One of the cruisers is correctly identified as a KUMA-class, but the other is misidentied as a NAGARA-class. Moore gives chase at flank speed for a few minutes, but then the cruisers zig towards him. Before he can set-up for an attack, they zag away.

18 October 1943:
Arrive at Truk.

19 October 1943:
Departs Truk.

21 October 1943:
Arrives at Rabaul. Disembarks troops and departs with KISO. Destroyer SAMIDARE joins the convoy's escort.

53 miles off Cape St. George. The cruisers are attacked by RAAF Bristol "Beaufort" bombers from Guadalcanal. KISO sustains a direct hit by a 250-lb. bomb. TAMA's hull plates are damaged by near-misses. Both cruisers return to Rabaul. KISO undergoes emergency repairs. TAMA departs Rabaul later that day.

27 October 1943:
Arrives at Yokosuka. Begins repairs and modifications. Her Nos. 5 and 7 140-mm guns are removed as are her catapult and derrick. A twin 127-mm HA gun is fitted as are four triple mount and six single mount Type 96 25-mm AA guns. This brings TAMA's 25-mm AA suite to 22 barrels (4x3, 2x2, 6x1). A type 21 air search radar is also fitted.

9 December 1943:
Repairs and modifications are completed.

15 December 1943:
Captain (Rear Admiral, posthumously) Yamamoto Iwata (46)(former ComDesDiv 7) is appointed the CO.

21 December 1943:
At 0600, TAMA departs Saeki for Palau with patrol boat PB-31 and auxiliary subchaser TAMA MARU No. 6 escorting convoy No. O-106 consisting of IKOMA, YASUKUNI, UYO, NICHIAI, CHIBURI and KOSEI MARUs.

Bungo Straits. At 1134, LtCdr Robert E. M. Ward's USS SAILFISH (SS-192) torpedoes and sinks UYO MARU. The escorts counter-attack, dropping 40 depth charges that slightly damage SAILFISH. The convoy returns to Saeki at about 2200 that same day.

24 December 1943:
Departs Yokosuka.

26 December 1943:
Arrives at Ominato.

27 December 1943:
Ominato. TAMA is refueled by auxiliary oiler TEIYO MARU.

29 December 1943:
Departs Ominato.

1 January 1944:
Arrives at Paramushiro.

15 January 1944:
Departs Paramushiro.

18 January 1944:
Arrives at Muroran. Auxiliary oiler TEIYO MARU refuels TAMA.

28 January 1944:
Departs Muroran.

29 January 1944:
Arrives at Mutsu Bay. Remains there as a guardship and conducts training missions out of Ominato and Kawauchi for the next five months.

10 March 1944:
Ominato. TAMA is refueled by auxiliary oiler TEIYO MARU.

Departs Ominato with KISO.

22 June 1944:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

30 June 1944:
Departs Yokosuka with KISO carrying army reinforcements to Ogasawara Gunto (Bonin Islands).

1 July 1944:
Lands troops at Futami Harbor, Chichi Jima.

2 July 1944:
Departs Chichi Jima.

3 July 1944:
Arrives at Yokosuka with KISO.

10 August 1944:
Departs Yokosuka for Yokohama. Embarks an army detachment, departs the same day for the Bonins on a second reinforcement run.

12 August 1944:
Disembarks troops at Chichi Jima.

14 August 1944:
Arrives at Haha Jima.

15 August 1944:
Arrives at Kure.

21 August 1944:
At Kure Navy Yard. Drydocked.

27 August 1944:

30 August 1944:
Transfers from CruDiv 21, Fifth Fleet to flagship, DesRon 11, Combined Fleet, replacing the lost NAGARA.

September 1944:
At Kure. Tests a new shipborne surface No. 215 fire-control radar, but it does not perform well and is removed.

18 October 1944:Departs Kure for Yashima anchorage.

20 October 1944: Operation "SHO-I-GO"(Victory) - The Battle of Leyte Gulf:
At 1700 hours, TAMA departs the Yashima anchorage towards the Philippines in Vice Admiral Ozawa Jisaburo's (former CO of HARUNA) Northern Mobile ("Decoy") Force: CarDiv 1's ZUIKAKU, ZUIHO, CHITOSE and CHIYODA and CarDiv 4's HYUGA and ISE screened by CruDiv 31's light cruiser ISUZU, DesDiv 41's KUWA and the SUGI, DesDiv 43's MAKI and KIRI, DesDiv 61's AKIZUKI, HATSUZUKI, WAKATSUKI and SHIMOTSUKI.

TAMA is assigned to protect ZUIKAKU and ZUIHO. Light cruiser OYODO is also attached to the screen.

At 1800, Ozawa's force departs the Inland Sea via the unguarded eastern channel of the Bungo Suido. Ozawa's radar detectors pick up an enemy submarine's radar emissions. The fleet takes evasive action eastwards. About ten aircraft are kept airborne to conduct antisubmarine patrols.

21 October 1944:
About 1200, torpedo noises are heard and the destroyers drop depth charges. Ozawa's force again turns eastwards.

22 October 1944:
HYUGA's communications-intelligence unit intercepts a possible American task force's voice transmission. The signal is also intercepted by the 31st Base Force at Manila. Direction-finding measures locate the American force south of Ozawa's Main Body, heading NNW.

Ozawa's force is refueling at sea. Sound contact is made with a submarine. At 2010, TAMA and ZUIKAKU spot torpedo tracks and make sharp turns to port. WAKATSUKI is detached to repel the sub. Ozawa is forced to cancel the refueling after receiving only one third of the required amount.

24 October 1944:
At 1700, Ozawa's Main Body is spotted by a Task Force 38 scout plane that reports this sighting to the Third Fleet's commander, Admiral Halsey, 190 miles away aboard flagship USS NEW JERSEY (BB-62). Halsey heads NE to engage, but it is too late for the Americans to launch and recover a carrier strike before dark.

25 October 1944: The Battle off Cape Engano:
At 0820, Ozawa's force is attacked by Vice Admiral (later Admiral) Marc Mitscher's (former CO of HORNET, CV-8) TF 38's carrier planes from USS ENTERPRISE (CV-6), ESSEX (CV-9), INTREPID (CV-11), FRANKLIN (CV-13), LEXINGTON (CV-16), INDEPENDENCE (CVL-22), BELLEAU WOOD (CVL-24), LANGLEY (CVL-27), CABOT (CVL-28) and SAN JACINTO (CVL-30). During the day, TF 38 launches 527 sorties in five strikes against the Northern Force.

TAMA is attacked by TBM-1C "Avenger" torpedo-bombers from VT-21 of Rear Admiral Ralph E. Davison's TG 38.4's BELLEAU WOOD and VT-51 from SAN JACINTO. TAMA receives a Mk.13 torpedo hit to her No. 2 boiler room.

At 0950, after emergency repairs, TAMA retires escorted by ISUZU, but ISUZU is ordered to protect the damaged carrier CHIYODA. TAMA is then escorted by destroyer SHIMOTSUKI, but later SHIMOTSUKI too is ordered to assist damaged carrier ZUIHO. TAMA proceeds alone at 14 knots towards Okinawa.

NE of Luzon. LtCdr (later Rear Admiral) Joseph Icenhower's USS JALLAO (SS-368), on her first war patrol, picks up TAMA on radar. At 2101, Icenhower sets up and fires three bow torpedoes from 1,000 yards, but misses. He swings JALLAO around and fires a salvo of four stern torpedoes from 800 yards. At 2105, three of the torpedoes hit TAMA; two explode. She breaks in two and within minutes sinks with all hands at 21-23N, 127-19E.

Captain Yamamoto is promoted Rear Admiral, posthumously.

20 December 1944:
Removed from the Navy List.

Authors' Notes:

[1] Wenneker took little interest in TAMA, inspecting only her upper works. The NGS liaison officer accompanying him noted that he appeared to be more interested in the heavy cruiser MAYA, moored at the adjacent pier.

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 Aldert Gritter/"Adm. Gurita" of the Netherlands and the late John Whitman.

Bob Hackett and Sander Kingsepp.

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