Allied Warships

Batfish (SS-310)

Submarine of the Balao class


USS Batfish during the war.

NavyThe US Navy
TypeSubmarine
ClassBalao 
Pennant310 
Built byPortsmouth Navy Yard (Kittery, Maine, U.S.A.) 
Ordered21 Apr 1942 
Laid down27 Dec 1942 
Launched6 May 1943 
Commissioned21 Aug 1943 
End service1 Nov 1969 
History

USS Batfish earned nine battle stars for her World War II service in the Pacific. She sank 14 ships and damaged three others during her seven war patrols. Over a period of four days in February 1945, she sank three Japanese submarines. For this feat, the "sub killer" was awarded the Presidential Unit Citation. Her other WW II exploits included blasting a grounded destroyer, bombarding a Japanese village, and rescuing downed aviators.

Decommissioned 6 April 1946 at the Mare Island Navy Yard, Vallejo, California.
Laid up in the Pacific Reserve Fleet, Mare Island Group.
Recommissioned 7 March 1952.
Redesignated Auxiliary Research Submarine (AGSS-310) 1 July 1960.
Decommissioned 1 November 1969.
Laid up in the Atlantic Reserve Fleet.
Struck from the Naval Register 28 February 1972.
Final Disposition, placed as a permanent memorial at Muskogee, Oklahoma.

 

Commands listed for USS Batfish (310)

Please note that we're still working on this section.

CommanderFromTo
1T/Lt.Cdr. Wayne Rucker Merrill, USN21 Aug 194315 May 1944
2T/Cdr. John Kerr Fyfe, USN15 May 194417 Mar 1945
3T/Lt.Cdr. Walter Lowry Small, USN17 Mar 19456 Apr 1946

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Notable events involving Batfish include:


The history of USS Batfish as compiled on this page is extracted from her patrol reports.

This page was last updated in June 2016.

9 Sep 1943
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) started her training programme in the Portsmouth area.

30 Sep 1943
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) arrived at Newport, Rhode Island from Portsmouth, New Hampshire for her torpedo trials.

4 Oct 1943
With her torpedo trials completed, USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN), arrived at New London, Connecticut from Newport, Rhode Island.

15 Oct 1943
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) was put on the slipway at New London.

19 Oct 1943
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) was put back in the water.

22 Oct 1943
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) departed New London, Connecticut for the Panama Canal Zone.

31 Oct 1943
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) arrived at Coco Solo, Panama Canal Zone from New London, Connecticut.

4 Nov 1943
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) departed Balboa, Panama Canal Zone for Pearl Harbour.

19 Nov 1943
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) arrived at Pearl Harbor.

25 Nov 1943
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) was docked at Pearl Harbour. She was undocked later the same day.

11 Dec 1943
After a training period, USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN), departed from Pearl Harbor for her 1st war patrol. She was ordered to patrol south of Honshu, Japan. She was escorted out by USS YMS-286 (Lt. C.L. Menley, USNR).

For the daily and attack positions of USS Batfish during this patrol see the map below. As no deck log is available (for the moment) positions were taken from the patrol report. Unfortunately the patrol report does not give daily noon positions.

15 Dec 1943
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) refuels at Midway and made some minor voyage repairs. She departed for her patrol area the next day.

20 Jan 1944
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) torpedoed and sank the Japanese troop transport Hidaka Maru (5486 GRT, built 1943) south of Shiono Misaki in position 31°28'N, 134°52'E.

On 9 January, Hidaka Maru had departed Palau for Saeki, Japan, in convoy FU-905 which consisted, besides herself of Sorachi Maru (4107 GRT, built 1930), Shiranesan Maru (4739 GRT, built 1943), Toyokawa Maru (5123 GRT, built 1911) and Kuramasan Maru (1995 GRT, built 1927) escorted by torpedo-boat Sagi and submarine chaser Ch-26 (All links are offsite links).

(All times are zone -9)
19 January 1944
1211 hours - In position 30°16'N, 135°51'E sighted smoke on horizon bearing 078°(T). Changed course to close.

1218 hours - Sighted two tall masts bearing 069°(T). Came to normal approach course.

1220 hours - Manned battle stations.

1228 hours - Heard echo ranging bearing 075°(T). Sighted a single floatplane bearing 087°(T).

1316 hours - Sighted masts of three large ships bearing 054°(T), 051°(T) and 050°(T).

1321 hours - Identified the target as a four ship convoy consisting of three large and one medium seized Maru's. Numbers of escorts could not yet be seen.

1440 hours - Unable to close the convoy submerged.

1630 hours - Lost contact with the convoy.

1747 hours - Surfaced and commenced chase.

2015 hours - Regained contact with the convoy by SJ radar bearing 337°(T), range 23650 yards.

2019 hours - Commenced radar tracking and end around.

2325 hours - Manned battle stations and turned in to attack.

20 January 1944
0057 hours - In position 31°30'N, 134°51'E fired a total of six torpedoes at two of the the transports, three torpedoes at each ship. On completing firing the torpedoes swung hard to the right and went ahead, flank speed. Four torpedo explosions were heard.

0107 hours - Slowed down. A damaged transport was seen. This was the first target, she was listing to port and was down by the stern. Commenced reload.

0150 hours - Secured from battle stations and withdrew a few nautical miles to the southward to transmit a signal to ComSubPac while on an easterly course.

0352 hours - With the signal sent and the reload completed headed back towards the target.

0427 hours - In position 31°28'N, 134°52'E obtained contact with the target with the SJ radar, range 24100 yards. Her pip was smaller then before indicating the she was lower in the water.

0438 hours - Manned battle stations.

0449 hours - Picked up an escort on radar. She appeared to be circling the target. The target appeared to be dead in the water.

0509 hours - In position 31°28'N, 134°52'E fired two torpedoes from 6000 yards. One hit was obtained and the target sank.

0615 hours - Submerged and retired to the south.

24 Jan 1944
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) departed her patrol area for Midway.

30 Jan 1944
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) ended her 1st war patrol at Midway. At Midway she was refitted by and by Submarine Division 61 Relief Crew until 12 February 1944.

Training was undertaken during 16-18 February 1944.

22 Feb 1944
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) departed from Midway for her 2nd war patrol. She was ordered to patrol off Sikoku in Japanese home waters.

For the daily and attack positions of USS Batfish during this patrol see the map below. As no deck log is available (for the moment) positions were taken from the patrol report. Unfortunately the patrol report does not give daily noon positions.

4 Mar 1944
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) arrived in her patrol area.

4 Apr 1944
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) departed her patrol area for Midway.

11 Apr 1944
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) made a short stop at Midway. She let for Pearl Harbour later the same day.

15 Apr 1944
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) ended her 2nd war patrol at Pearl Harbor. Refit was undertaken by USS Proteus and the Submarine Base.

10 May 1944
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) departed from Pearl Harbor for Midway.

14 May 1944
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.R. Merrill, USN) arrived at Midway.

15 May 1944
Cdr. John Kerr Fyfe, USN takes over command from Lt.Cdr. Wayne Rucker Merrill, USN.

26 May 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) departed from Midway for her 3rd war patrol. She was ordered to patrol off Honshu and Kyushu in Japanese home waters.

For the daily and attack positions of USS Batfish during this patrol see the map below. As no deck log is available (for the moment) positions were taken from the patrol report. Unfortunately the patrol report does not give daily noon positions.

3 Jun 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) arrived in her patrol area.

10 Jun 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) claims to have sunk a freighter of about 3000/3500 tons west of Kyushu, Japan in position 32°38'N, 131°58'E.

(All times are zone -9)
1058 hours - In position 32°38'N, 132°01'E sighted mast of a ship bearing 287°(T). Enemy course south-east, range was 11000 yards. Started approach.

1220 hours - Went to battle stations.

1243 hours - In position 32°38'N, 131°58'E fired three torpedoes at a freighter of about 3000/3500 tons. Range was 1800 yards. One hit was obtained amidships. The target sank by the stern in less then two minutes.

1300 hours - Commenced reload.

18 Jun 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) claims to have sunk a freighter of about 2500/3000 tons south of Honshu, Japan in position 33°26'N, 135°35'E.

(All times are zone -9)
1248 hours - In position 33°25'N, 135°39'E sighted a coastal transport and a coastal tanker bearing 069°(T). Range was about 12000 yards. Commenced approach.

1328 hours - In position 33°26'N, 135°35'E fired three torpedoes from 2100 yards at the transport. One hit was obtained and the ship broke in half and she sank in less then a minute.

22 Jun 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) torpedoed and sank the brand new Japanese merchant cargo ship Nagaragawa Maru (887 GRT, built 1944) off Honshu, Japan in position 34°35'N, 137°51'E.

(All times are zone -9)
1120 hours - In position 34°35'N, 137°54'E sighted ship bearing 302°(T), range 12000 yards. Commenced approach.

1212 hours - In position 34°35'N, 137°56'E fired three torpedoes from 1900 yards. All torpedoes missed. The target apparently never saw the torpedo wakes and continued on as if nothing had happened.

1216 hours - Came around and started a new attack.

1238 hours - While getting ready to fire, the target zigged away 40 degrees. While having a look around through the periscope sighted an exact sister ship of the target. This new target was 5000 yards on our starboard quarter. Started attack on this new target. Position was now 34°36'N, 137°58'E.

1255 hours - In position 34°35'N, 137°51'E fired four torpedoes from the stern tubes from 1700 yards. Two hits were obtained. The target sank stern first with a large starboard list.

1310 hours - Heard several mild explosions. Went deep and rigged for depth charges. There should have been 400 feet of water but Batfish grounded at 240 feet causing some minor damage. Went to 200 feet.

1329 hours - Depth charging started. About 17 were dropped, some fairly close.

1857 hours - Another depth charge attack. About 34 were dropped.

2025 hours - Periscipe depth. Nothing in sight.

2045 hours - Surfaced.

28 Jun 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) was detected and depth charged while trying to attack a Japanese convoy south of Tokyo Bay.

(All times are zone -9)
0956 hours - In position 34°13'N, 139°48'E sighted a convoy bearing 307°(T). Base course was 150°(T). Range 9500 yards. This convoy consisted of two Asashio-class fleet destroyers, one Kamikaze-class destroyer, two large transports and two or three LST's.

1000 hours - While at periscope depth a bomb was dropped by an aircraft that had not been seen. It was dropped close and caused some minor damage.

1005 hours - Back at periscope depth. Saw that the convoy had zigged away. A favourable attack position could not be obtained and in the end the attack had to be broken off.

29 Jun 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) attacked but missed what was thought to be a large Tank Landing Ship south of Tokyo Bay.

(All times are zone -9)
2102 hours - In position 33°42'N, 140°03'E obtained radar (SJ) contact bearing 276°(T), range 12100 yards. Commenced tracking and end around.

2109 hours - SD radar contact, range 10 nautical miles.

2111 hours - Aircraft now at 6,5 nautical miles so dove to radar depth to keep from being sighted in the bright moonlight.

2115 hours - Surfaced. Continued tracking. The target could not be seen on the radar screen while at 40 feet.

2254 hours - In position ahead. Target was tracked at 13 knots. He was zigging between courses of 335°(T) and 015°(T) on 4, 5, and 7 minute legs. Three escorts were in the area.

2255 hours - Dived to radar depth.

2313 hours - The target failed to zig as anticipated but zigged 10° to his left.

2316 hours - In position 34°08'N, 139°49'E fired three bow torpedoes from 3350 yards. No hits. The target was thought to be a large tank landing ship.

2321 hours - Escorts started coming in. Went deep and rigged for depth charging.

2322 hours - Three depth charges were dropped while Bang was at 70 feet. They were close but light and caused no damage.

2323 - 2326 hours - Thirteen depth charges were dropped. Evaded at 350 feet at 2/3 speed. No more depth charges followed and Batfish surfaced at 0137/30.

1 Jul 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) sank the Japanese guard boats Kamoi Maru (138 GRT) and Isuzugawa Maru No.5 (226 GRT) with gunfire south-east of Aogashima, Japan in position 31°45'N, 140°39'E.

(All times are zone -9)
1020 hours - In position 32°45'N, 140°38'E sighted masts of two ships on the horizon bearing 135°(T).

1021 hours - Dived. Commenced approach.

1045 hours - Targets identified as a large trawler escorted by a yacht type patrol vessel mouting three machine guns and carrying three depth charges in racks aft. Decided to engage with gunfire.

1125 hours - Battle surfaced in position 31°45'N, 140°39'E. The 4" hit the trawler with the fifth round starting a large fire forward. The trawler sank after the 18th round. Fire was then shifted to the escort and by 1215 hours he was dead in the water and started to sink.

1259 hours - The escorts depth charges exploded when a fire reached them and the escort sank.

2 Jul 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) departed her patrol area for Midway.

7 Jul 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) ended her 3rd war patrol at Midway. Refit was performed by USS Proteus.

1 Aug 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) departed from Midway for her 4th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol off Palau.

For the daily and attack positions of USS Batfish during this patrol see the map below. As no deck log is available (for the moment) positions were taken from the patrol report. Unfortunately the patrol report does not give daily noon positions.

23 Aug 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) claims to have sunk a Japanese destoyer off Velasco Reef, Palau.

(All times are zone -9)
While approaching the stranded ships on Velasco Reef it became clear that the transport was high and dry and that firing torpedoes at her would be useless. Decided to attack a patrolling 'Minekaze-class' destroyer.

1402 hours - In position 08°09'N, 134°38'E fired three torpedoes from 2670 yards. All three hit. The target was seen to sink with a port list, water up to the bridge. She was smoking heavily.

1405 hours - A patrol craft came towards. Went deep.

1447 hours - Returned to periscope depth. The target could no longer be seen, she must have sunk.

25 Aug 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) attacked a Japanese patrol vessel with three torpedoes south of Palau. No hits were obtained.

(All times are zone -9)
1250 hours - In position 07°11'N, 134°30'E sound picked up high speed screws.

1252 hours - A quick look around revealed a large PC boat at a range of 3500 yards.

1255 hours - Got a quick set up. Swung left to bring the stern tubes to bear.

1300 hours - In position 07°10'N, 134°31'E fired three stern torpedoes from 1200 yards. The target saw the torpedoes coming and was able to evade.

1304 hours - Fired one stern torpedo from 1900 yards at the now stopped target. As soon as the torpedo was fired, the target speeded up again. The torpedo missed.

1310 hours - The target came towards. Went deep and rigged for depth charging.

1313 hours - Two depth charges.

1413 hours - Returned to periscope depth. Nothing in sight.

26 Aug 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) torpedoed and causes further damage to the grounded Japanese destroyer Samidare (offsite link) on Velasco Reef, Palau in position 08°09'N, 134°37'E. The wreck of Samidare is later blown up by the Japanese. Samidare had been grounded on 18 August.

(All times are zone -9)
1130 hours - Sighted the beached transport still in the same place as a few days ago.

1303 hours - Sighted the beached Fubuki-class destroyer still in the same place as well.

1831 hours - Fired no. 7 tube from 2970 yards at the beached destroyer. She hit and exploded right under no.2 stack.

1834 hours - Fired no. 8 tube. range now 3200 yards. This also hit under no.2 stack and the destroyer broke in half. It was now clear that this destoyer was beyond salvage.

3 Sep 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) departed her patrol area for Fremantle, Australia.

12 Sep 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) ended her 4th war patrol at Fremantle, Australia. At Fremantle she was refitted by USS Griffin and Submarine Division 122 Relief Crew.

8 Oct 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) departed from Fremantle for her 5th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the South China and Sulu Seas.

For the daily and attack positions of USS Batfish during this patrol see the map below. As no deck log is available (for the moment) positions were taken from the patrol report. Unfortunately the patrol report does not give daily noon positions.

11 Oct 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) topped off with fuel at Exmouth Gulf before proceeding to her patrol area.

15 Oct 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) enters Darwin, Australia to make repairs to one of her periscopes.

17 Oct 1944
With the repairs to her periscope completed USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) departed from Darwin for her patrol area.

18 Oct 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) attacked a 'Q-ship' with six torpedoes in the Banda Sea. No hits were obtained. Later one more torpedo was fired and one of the escorts was claimed sunk. Shortly afterwards Badfish was attacked by the Q-ship and the other escort but managed to escape.

(All times are zone -8)
18 October 1944
2107 hours - In position 06°42'S, 123°09'E obtained SJ radar contact bearing 329°(T). Range 18000 yards. Commenced tracking. When the rang had decreased to 12000 yards two more pips were seen, these were two escorts.

2210 hours - In position 06°45'S, 123°30'E fired six bow torpedoes from 2600 yards. No hits were scored as the torpedoes ran underneath the target.

2218 hours - Pulled out to 10000 yards and started thinking over the situation. This smalled like 'a rat' (Q-ship). Decided to work up ahead, get on his track and look the target over in the early morning from periscope depth.

19 October 1944
0036 hours - Cdr. Fyfe could not resist firing one more torpedo but now set to one feet so fired no. 10 tube but nothing happened. Position was 06°45'S, 124°00'E. It exploded after a timed run to the port or far escort but nothing was seen from the bridge. Two minutes later however the pip of this escort disappeared from the radar screen. He must have sunk. The target and starboard escort did nothing at all. Started working up ahead again.

At dawn Batfish started to close again but at .....

0614 hours - Range was now 5500 yards. The target was seen to hoist a flag signal. Both he and the escort turned towards at high speed. The 'Q-ship' now uncovered his guns and his first salvo was a straddle.

0620 hours - Dived and went deep.

0644 hours - Three depth charges, very close.

0645 hours - Five more depth charges, even closer.

0647 hours - Five more depth charges, a little further away.

0725 hours - Sound lost screws astern. Came up to periscope depth. Echo ranging astern but nothing could be seen.

1335 hours - Surfaced and continued passage.

6 Nov 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) attacked a transport of convoy MATA-31 off Bolinao, Philippines, but no hits were obtained. Initially a set-up was made on heavy cruiser Aoba but an escort vessel forced Batfish deep for a while.

Convoy MATA-31 was made up of Tatsuharu Maru (6345 GRT, built 1939), Doryo Maru (2275 GRT, built 1944) and five unidentified merchant ships. It was escorted by frigates Kaibokan 26, Kaibokan 18 and submarine chasers Ch 18, Ch 17, Ch 23, Ch 37 and Ch 38.

(All times are zone -8)
1040 hours - Sighted two columns of smoke moving up the coast toward Piedra Point.

1101 hours - In position 16°30'N, 119°50'E sighted masts of two ships on northerly course, hugging the coast. Battle stations submerged. The picture developed as follows. Two anti-submarine screens to seaward of convoy consisting of two destroyers, a minelayer, and four patrol vessels. One column of heavy ships, an Aoba-class heavy cruiser, a large transport and a medium transport. Inboard of these, not more then about 500 yards from the shore were two and possibly three small transports. Air cover by land based bombers completed the picture. Started approach on heavy cruiser which appeared to be damaged as she had a slight list to port.

1202 hours - Rigged for silent running and ran under first escort of the outer screen.

1215 hours - Made ready bow tubes. Raised periscope for a firing set up and a quick sweep around showed that we were about to run down by the second destroyer of the inner screen. At this time the heavy cruiser lined up from 100° track and with 2200 yards torpedo run. Went to 120 feet to evade the destroyer.

1222 hours - Returned to periscope depth. Selected the large transport as target.

1224 hours - In position 16°27'N, 119°51'E fired six bow torpedoes from 2320 yards. All torpedoes missed ahead.

1227 hours - A counter attack developed with four escorts boxing Batfish in which meanwhile had gone to 350 feet. Batfish however managed to escape.

12 Nov 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) attacked two transports inside San Fernando harbour with two torpedoes each. The first transport was missed. The results of the attack on the other transport could not be observed.

(All times are zone -8)
1030 hours - Sighted tops of a large transport. Shortly afterwards this ship was seen to be in San Fernando harbour. Decided to attack.

1120 hours - Made the approach to San Fernando Harbour from the north-west.

1300 hours - In position 16°40'N, 120°16'E. Had a good look inside the harbour and could see one large transport anchored and two medium transports moored to dock.

1345 hours - Battle stations submerged.

1424 hours - In position 16°38'N, 120°18'E fired two bow torpedoes at the large transport at anchor.

1425 hours - Fired two bow torpedoes at one of the medium transports.

1426 hours - Watched wakes of the first two torpedoes pass astern of their target and explode on the beach.

1427 hours - The other two torpedoes were nicely on their way to their target when a 'Rufe' aircraft was seen coming in. Went to 90 feet.

1430 hours - Heard one timed torpedo explosion. It hit something solid, either the ship or the dock.

1432 hours - First of eight aircraft bombs.

1445 hours - Last bomb.

1515 hours - Tried to come up to have a look but several aircraft had different ideas. Retired to seaward.

1843 hours - Surfaced.

15 Nov 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) claims to have sunk a medium transport and an escort vessel out of a convoy to the west of Luzon, Philippines.

(All times are zone -8)
14 November 1944
1702 hours - Sighted smoke bearing 213°(T). Commenced tracking from ahead. Position was 17°40'N, 118°00'E.

1946 hours - SJ radar contact, range 16000 yards, bearing 206°(T). Eight pips were on the radar screen, of which four were thought to be Maru's. USS Raton and USS Ray reported that they were attacking. Course of the convoy was 340°(T), speed 7.5 knots. Escorts were patrolling ahead and on both flanks.

2116 hours - Range to the largest ship was now 9000 yards. Saw and heard a tremendous explosion followed 10 seconds later by another. Looked like our collegues were 'busy'.

2117 hours - The ship sank.

2119 hours - The convoy appeared to scatter. Several more explosions were heard through the night.

15 November 1944
0024 hours - In a position 1200 yards off track. Range 4200 yards. Stopped and kept the stern pointed at the nearest escort, waiting for the target to come on.

0028 hours - The escort passed 1800 yards astern.

0031 hours - In position 18°00'N, 118°00'E fired four stern torpedoes from 3200 yards.

0035 hours - Saw and heard two explosions on the target, 15 seconds apart. These were thought to be the second and third torpedoes hitting the target.

0036 hours - Heard and felt another explosion thought to be the fourth torpedo hitting the far escort.

0038 hours - Far escort, which had stopped and stopped pinging at 0036 hours, disappeared from the radar screen. It is thought he sank at this time. This escort was never sighted from the bridge.

16 Nov 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) departed her patrol area for Pearl Harbour.

1 Dec 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) ended her 5th war patrol at Pearl Harbor. She was refitted by the Submarine Base, Submarine Divisions 282 and 42 Relief Crews. Training commenced on 18 December.

30 Dec 1944
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) departed Pearl Harbour for her 6th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in Luzon Strait and the South China Sea. She was escorted out by USS PC-465 (Lt.(jg) C.B. Stoye, USNR).

For the daily and attack positions of USS Batfish during this patrol see the map below. As no deck log is available (for the moment) positions were taken from the patrol report. Unfortunately the patrol report does not give daily noon positions.

9 Jan 1945
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) arrived at Guam for voyage repairs and to top off with fuel and provisions. She was escorted in by USS PC-1126 (Lt. J.F. Carrere, USNR).

10 Jan 1945
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) departed from Guam for her patrol area.

21 Jan 1945
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) arrived in her patrol area to the east of Hainan.

23 Jan 1945
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) damaged a junk with gunfire.

(All times are zone -8)
0209 hours - In position 20°17'N, 111°36'E obtained SJ radar contact at a range of 9800 yards. Two pips. Targets tracked course 180°. Speed varying between three knots and one knot.

0535 hours - A new radar contact at a range of 17000 yards. Batfish was now 8000 yards ahead of the original contact. The new contact tracked on course 350° at only two knots. This new contact is ahead and Batfish was on track of both contacts and in a good position for an attack on either.

0610 hours - Contact developed into many ships, at least twelve.

0615 hours - Dived and went to battle stations submerged.

0639 hours - All ships were identified as Chinese junk type sailing vessels. A total of 28 were counted. Decided to surface and determine if they were by any chance carrying valuable Japanese cargos.

0711 hours - Surfaced and started in.

0730 hours - Commenced firing all guns from 2000 yards range. After hitting one ship several times all ships hove to. Maneuvered the ship alongside four, they were all fishing vessels. Headed for the one that we had hit. Boarded and tended the wounded. Gave them some provisions.

0950 hours - Left the junk fleet and proceeded eastwards.

31 Jan 1945
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) attacked but missed a small freighter with three torpedoes off the south coast of Hainan.

(All times are zone -8)
1001 hours - In position 18°06'N, 109°36'E sighted a small freighter on a westerly course at a range of 8000 yards. Went to battle stations.

1026 hours - In position 18°07'N, 109°37'E fired three bow torpedoes from 1000 yards. No hits were obtained.

1030 hours - The target turned away to the northward to enter Yulin. Decided to follow him in the hope of getting another shot but this did not materialise.

2 Feb 1945
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) is ordered to patrol in Luzon Strait, course is set accordingly.

4 Feb 1945
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) either heavily damaged or sunk a Japanese picket boat / patrol vessel south of Formosa.

(All times are zone -8)
1714 hours - In position 21°00'N, 119°50'E sighted a vessel on a notherly course at a range of about 4000 yards.

1743 hours - Commenced firing with 40mm and 20mm guns from ranges verying between 1000 and 50 yards.

1835 hours - Ceased firing. The ship could no longer be seen in the dark. She was very much shot up and he might have even sunk. It was doubted that he could make the 100 nautical miles back to Formosa in the rough sea and it might well be possible that nobody was left alive or if so was not mortally wounded.

10 Feb 1945
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) claims to have sunk a Japanese submarine north of Luzon, Philippines in position 18°50'N, 121°33'E. There is a remote chance this may have been RO 55.

(All times are zone -8)
9 February 1945
2250 hours - In position 18°50'N, 121°40'E obtained SJ radar contact bearing 240°(T), range 11000 yards. Commenced tracking. Target tracked on course 310°(T), speed 12 knots. Went to battle stations and commenced approach.

2331 hours - In position 18°50'N, 121°33'E fired four bow torpedoes from 1850 yards. Torpedoes were set to 6 feet. All missed.

2339 hours - Heard four end of run detonations. Pulled out to 5000 yards. Commenced end around and reload.

10 February 1945
0001 hours - Range was now 1020 yards. Target was identified as a Japanese submarine.

0002 hours - In position 18°56'N, 121°34'E commenced firing torpedoes. No.1 ran hot in the tube. No.2 hit and No.3 ran over he position where the target sank. The hit was accompanied by a brilliant red explosion that lit up the whole sky. The target sank almost immediately. The target disappeared from visual sight and on the radar screen almost immediately, screws stopped and loud breaking up noises were heard on sound gear.

0010 hours - Heard one end of run explosion.

11 Feb 1945
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) torpedoed and sank a Japanese submarine, most likely the RO 112 (525 tons, offsite link) off Camiguin, Philippines in position 18°53'N, 121°47'E.

(All times are zone -8)
1951 hours - In position 18°53'N, 121°50'E obtained SJ radar contact at 8000 yards bearing 310°(T). Manned battle stations and commenced tracking.

2037 hours - Sighted target from the bridge at a range of 1300 yards. Identified the target as a submarine with no shears, very low in the water, and slightly smaller then our previous target.

2043 hours - When about to shoot the target dived.

2105 hours - Heard a submarine blowing tanks.

2106 hours - Obtained contact with the SJ radar at a range of 8650 yards, bearing 018°(T).

2109 hours - Manned battle stations and commenced an end around.

2150 hours - With the range to the target 6000 yards dived to radar depth. The target had speeded up from 7 to 12 knots. Enemy course was 120°(T).

2202 hours - In position 18°53'N, 121°47'E fired four bow torpedoes from 880 yards. Three hits were obained. One end of run explosion was heard later.

13 Feb 1945
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) torpedoed and sank the Japanese submarine RO 113 (525 tons, offsite link) (525 tons) off Babuyan Islands, Philippines in position 19°10'N, 121°25'E.

(All times are zone -8)
0215 hours - In position 19°10'N, 121°23'E obtained SJ radar contact bearing 220°(T), range 10700 yards. Commenced tracking.

0227 hours - Targed tracked on base course 120°(T), speed 7 knots. Looked like another Japanese submarine. Manned battle stations submerged and commenced approach.

0241 hours - With the range to the target 7150 yards he dived. Headed to a position ahead as to be in a good position when he target would surface.

0353 hours - Regained contact on SJ radar bearing 336°(T), range 9800 yards.

0412 hours - Dove on the targets track when the range was 6800 yards.

0448 hours - In position 19°10'N, 121°25'E fired three stern torpedoes from 1500 yards. The first torpedo was seen to hit and the target sank immediately. The other torpedoes missed because the target sank so quickly. Two end of run explosions were heard later.

16 Feb 1945
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) departed her patrol area for Guam.

21 Feb 1945
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) arrived at Guam. She was escorted in by USS PC-1082 (Lt. N.P. Bard, USNR).

22 Feb 1945
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) departed Guam for Pearl Harbour. She was escorted out by USS PC-1082 (Lt. N.P. Bard, USNR).

3 Mar 1945
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) ended her 6th war patrol at Pearl Harbor. She was escorted in by USS PC-1078 (Lt. J.R. Slater, USNR).

6 Mar 1945
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) departed from Pearl Harbor bound for the Bethlehem Steel Ship Building Company, San Francisco to undergo a major overhaul.

14 Mar 1945
USS Batfish (Cdr. J.K. Fyfe, USN) arrived at the Bethlehem Steel Ship Building Company, San Francisco for refit.

17 Mar 1945
Lt.Cdr. Walter Lowry Small, USN takes over command from Cdr. John Kerr Fyfe, USN.

31 May 1945
With her overhaul completed USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.L. Small, USN) departed from San Francisco bound for Pearl Harbor.

8 Jun 1945
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.L. Small, USN) arrived at Pearl Harbor.

26 Jun 1945
After a training period, which commenced on 13 June 1945, USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.L. Small, USN) departed from Pearl Harbor for her 7th war patrol. Batfish was ordered to call at Saipan before proceeding towards her patrol area off the south-east coast of Kyushu, Japan. She was escorted out by USS PC-778 (Lt. F.J. Whittlessey, USNR).

For the daily and attack positions of USS Batfish during this patrol see the map below.

8 Jul 1945
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.L. Small, USN) arrived at Saipan. She was escorted in by USS LCI(L)-222 (Lt.(jg) H.S. Thompson, USNR).

10 Jul 1945
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.L. Small, USN) departed from Saipan for her patrol area. She was escorted out by USS LCI(L)-222 (Lt.(jg) H.S. Thompson, USNR).

24 Jul 1945
Early in the evening, USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.L. Small, USN), bombarded the village of Nagata on Yakushima Island.

30 Jul 1945
At 0930 hours, USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.L. Small, USN), picked up three US airmen in position 29°28'N, 129°53'E.

1 Aug 1945
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.L. Small, USN) departed her patrol area for Iwo Jima.

4 Aug 1945
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.L. Small, USN) arrived at Iwo Jima to land the wounded aviators she had picked up on 30 July. She was escorted in by USS Fanning (Lt.Cdr. W.H. Morse, USNR).

5 Aug 1945
After fuelling, USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.L. Small, USN), departed Iwo Jima to resume her 7th war patrol. She was escorted out by USS PC-1259 (Lt. T.H. Engelhardt, Jr., USNR).

16 Aug 1945
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.L. Small, USN) departed her lifeguard station for Pearl Harbour via Midway.

22 Aug 1945
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.L. Small, USN) made a short stop at Midway. She departed for Pearl Harbour later the same day.

26 Aug 1945
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.L. Small, USN) ended her 7th war patrol at Pearl Harbor.

9 Sep 1945
USS Batfish (Lt.Cdr. W.L. Small, USN) arrived at the Mare Island Navy Yard.

Media links


U. S. Submarines in World War II

Kimmett, Larry and Regis, Margaret


U.S. Submarines Through 1945

Friedman, Norman


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