Rear Admiral Jo Tanaka? Was he a Captain on the Cruiser Kitakami? twice sunk in but two days

January 06, 2009 6:55


Thank you for your prompt response to my query on Admiral Tanaka. I find that he is not the Tanaka that I am looking for so I will have to continue searching.

Do you have any information on Rear Admiral Jo Tanaka? He was a Captain on the Cruiser Kitakami?
Any and all information will be helpful.

Thank you in advance.



Jo Tanaka was in command of the cruiser Chokai from June 6- October 25 1944, on which day she was sunk at the Battle of Samar.

He was rescued by the destroyer Fujinami, only to be again sunk two days later, and the destroyer was lost with all hands, so Jo died on October 27, after being twice sunk in but two days.

Hope this helps.




Thanks for your information on Jo Tanaka, however I am still looking. Do you have anything on Mitsuo Tanaka on the Yubari? This is a puzzle that I hope to solve some day.





10 March 1942:

The anchored invasion task group is attacked by 90 aircraft from Rear
Admiral (later Admiral) Frank J. Fletcher's Task Force 17's USS YORKTOWN
(CV-5) and LEXINGTON (CV-2). Fletcher's planes have flown from the Coral Sea
over New Guinea's Owen Stanley mountains to make the attack. KONGO MARU and
three other transports are sunk. Transport TENYO MARU and several other
ships are damaged.

At the start of attack YUBARI patrols between Lae and Salamaua, later
heading out for Huon Gulf. She is first attacked by two SBD-3 "Dauntless"
dive-bombers from LEXINGTON's VS-2, claiming one hit, but actually score
several near misses to port while bomb fragments cut down several 13.2-mm AA
machine-gun crews. YUBARI is next strafed by four F4F-3 fighters from VF-3,
approaching from port bow. The XO, Cdr Tanaka Mitsuo and several bridge
lookouts are killed.

After 0950 (local), YUBARI is attacked by SBD-3s from USS YORKTOWN's VB-5.
No. 2 turret ready-use powder bags detonate as a result of strafing,
igniting the mattresses fitted to the bridge for anti-splinter protection.
The next strafing attack from the bow direction ignites the port lifeboat
gasoline drums stowage, resulting in a serious fire amidships. One 13.2-mm
machine gun is disabled by strafing. Firefighting teams dump most of the
burning drums overboard, but their hoses do not cover the entire danger area
and the fire reaches the forward torpedo mount. The CO orders the torpedoes
jettisoned, but the mount cannot be trained outboard as a result of a power
failure. The rescue crews manage to rotate the mount manually and extract
the torpedoes using a pulley. The reserve torpedoes are dumped in the same

In all, YUBARI evades 67 bombs and 12 torpedoes while receiving five near
misses that cause splinter damage in 3,000 locations. A total of thirteen
sailors are KIA and 49 wounded.



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