Saturday, July 8, 2017

Total Loss

WED 8 JUL 1942
Submarine S-37 (SS-142) torpedoes and sinks Japanese transport Tenzan Maru about 30 miles west of Rabaul, 04°00'S, 151°50'E. Escorting submarine chaser Ch 30 depth-charges S-37 without success.

Ordeal of dispersed USSR-bound convoy PQ 17 to German submarines and planes continues: 19 survivors (16 merchant seamen and three Armed Guard sailors) of U.S. freighter John Witherspoon (sunk by German submarine U-255 on 6 July) are rescued by Panamanian freighter El Capitan. German bombers, however, attack the latter and sink her. British armed trawler HMS Lord Austin rescues the 19 John Witherspoon men and takes them to Archangel (see 9 July).

U.S. tanker J.A. Moffett, Jr. is torpedoed by German submarine U-571 three miles south by west of Tennessee Reef, Florida Straits, 24°47'N, 80°42'W; and is run aground on Tennessee Reef to prevent the ship's loss. The ship's master is the only fatality; the survivors (36 merchant seamen and the 6-man Armed Guard) are rescued by Coast Guard auxiliary craft Mary Jane and Southbound and cutter Nike (WPC-112) rescue the survivors. Later salvaged, J.A. Moffett, Jr. is written off as a total loss.

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