On April 20, 1943, the submarine noticed two merchantmen and approached for an assault. The following day, whereas on the floor, the Grenadier noticed and was noticed by a Japanese aircraft. Because the ship submerged itself for security, it was shaken by bombs, the Navy recounted, forcing the submarine to plummet to 267 ft under the floor.
Whereas the hull and hatches had been badly leaking, a fireplace had additionally damaged out, inflicting extra chaos, Lt. Cmdr. John A. Fitzgerald and 5 different males later recounted.
Within the early morning hours of April 22, two Japanese ships had been noticed within the distance. Robert W. Palmer, one of many sailors aboard the Grenadier when it was struck, wrote in “The Silent Service in World War II” that the lads then used a number of sorts of firearms, together with 20-millimeter weapons, rifles, pistols and Tommy weapons, to fireside at one other aircraft, which finally dropped a bomb close by.
Earlier than scuttling the submarine, the lads destroyed a coding machine with hammers, Mr. Palmer stated, including that the torpedo knowledge pc and radio gear had been all deliberately broken by the crew. Paperwork, he stated, had been thrown overboard with weighted baggage.
All 76 crew members survived the assault, however they confronted an unsure future.
After the skipper ordered all males into the water, they had been picked up by a Japanese armed service provider ship, Mr. Palmer stated. They had been taken to a commandeered Catholic faculty in Penang, Malaysia, the place they had been tortured.
“Beating, burning, breaking fingers with bamboo or pencils between them were perpetrated on the men by Japanese soldiers who sneered and joked,” Mr. Palmer wrote. The captives had been compelled to sit down or stand in silence in an consideration place, he stated: “Any divergence resulted in a gun butt, kick, slug in the face or a bayonet prick.” The crew’s Japanese captors additionally used ways like pushing the blade of a pen knife underneath the fingernails to get the lads to speak about their submarine, he wrote.
“This was the beginning of 28 and a half months of similar treatment for most all of the crew and officers alike,” he stated. 4 Grenadier crew members died in Japanese captivity.