Saturday, March 11, 2017

They Were Expendable

Wed. 11 March 1942
Lieutenant General Douglas MacArthur and Rear Admiral Francis W. Rockwell depart Luzon, with their respective staffs, in motor torpedo boats PT-32, PT-34, PT-35 and PT-41, bound for Mindanao. For his role in the evacuation, as well as other operations in the Philippines since the start of hostilities, Lieutenant John D. Bulkeley, Commander, Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron 3, will receive the Medal of Honor (see 13 March). [As immortalized in John Ford's sadly under-rated They Were Expendable.]Submarine Pollack (SS-180), operating in the East China Sea about 270 miles east of Shanghai, sinks Japanese merchant cargo ship Fukushu Maru, 30°53'N, 126°20'E and passenger-cargo ship Baikal Maru, 31°00'N, 126°32'E.

U.S. passenger ship Mount McKinley is stranded off Unimak Island, Aleutians; wrecked subsequently by heavy seas, the ship will be written off as a total loss.

Unarmed U.S. freighter Texan is torpedoed, shelled, and sunk by German submarine U-126 about 40 miles east of Nuevitas, Cuba, 21°32'N, 76°24'W; Cuban fishing boat Yoyo rescues survivors.

Unarmed U.S. freighter Caribsea is torpedoed and sunk by German submarine U-158 about 14 miles east of Cape Lookout, North Carolina, 34°40'N, 76°10'W; U.S. freighter Norlindo rescues survivors.

Coastal minesweeper AMc-202, at 40°32'N, 71°40'W, rescues seven survivors from Brazilian steamship Cayru, sunk by German submarine U-94 on 9 March, and transports them to New London, Connecticut.

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