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  RO-50 Japanese Submarine (SS-59)
Kaichu Type
RO-35 class

Ship History
Laid down at Mitsui-Tamano shipyard as a 960-ton type K6 submarine. Launched on SS-59 (Submarine No. 59) on December 22, 1922. Completed on September 17, 1923 and attached to the Sasebo Naval District with LtCdr Yokoyama Sugao as the Commanding Officer. On November 1, 1924 redesignated RO-60. The submarine is assigned to several different captains during the inter-war years.

On July 15, 1941 assigned to LtCdr Fujimori Yasuo. Prior to the Pacific War, assigned to SubDiv 2, SubRon 7, 4th Fleet with RO-61 and RO-62.

Wartime History
During December 6-8, 1941 at the start of hostilities, RO-60 is off Kwajalein on 'standby alert'. On December 12, RO-60, RO-61 and RO-62 depart Kwajalein to reinforce the Wake Island Occupation Group.


On February 10, 1945 at 8:05am roughly 300 nautical miles ESE off Surigao on Leyte, RO-50 fired a four-torpedo salvo at an enemy reinforcement convoy sailing in a single column at roughly 08-01N, 136-37E proceeding from Hollandia to Leyte.

At about 8:10am a single torpedo against the stern of LST-577, roughly 1/3 of the bow was blown off, including the entire bridge. The ship broke into two and caused the aft section to sink immediately.

Afterwards, USS Isherwood DD-520 commences a box search for this submarine. After sunset RO-50 surfaces and USS Isherwood made radar contact, goes to general quarters, searching with her search light, and RO-50 crash dives to 395', while the destroyer drops a full pattern of of depth charges on the target, damaging the dive tank vaves, shatter the periscope lens and caused the torpedo tubes to begin leaking. Afterwards, the destroyer drops two more patterns and reports smelling oil on the surface, then looses contact. Afterwards, RO-50 surfaces and finds a depth charge fragment on her stern.

During September 1945, RO-50 was surrendered. Afterwards, stripped of all usable equipment and material. On November 30, 1945 officially removed from the Navy list.

Sinking History
On April 1, 1946 during "Operation Road's End", scuttled 16 nautical miles off Kinai Island at 90° bearing off Goto Island.

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Last Updated
November 16, 2018


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