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The US submarine wreck from World War II was discovered 75 years after sinking



The wreck of WWII USS Grayback was discovered off Japan by a Japanese bomber 75 years after it was demolished.

The submarine was found on June 5 by the Lost 52 project, which locates the lost US World War II submarines. In a statement translated from the Japanese, the Lost 52 project stated that the USS Grayback (SS-208) was the first US submarine to be discovered off the coast of Japan.

Japanese records indicate that the submarine was sunk in February 1944 by a 500-pound bomb dropped by a naval bomber. The bomb struck behind the Grayback's tower and the submarine sank with the loss of its 80-man crew. [19659003] WWII US Submarine Bug Detected Near Far Alaskan Island

The reconnaissance team deployed an underwater drone to locate the Tambor-class submarine located at a depth of 1

,427 feet and 50 nautical miles south of Okinawa. The deck gun of the submarine was 100 meters away.

  The plaque on the wreck of the USS Grayback.

The plaque on the wreck of the USS Grayback.
(Ocean Outreach / Lost 52 Project / YouTube)

In the statement, the founder of the Lost 52 Project, Tim Taylor, described the discovery as "absolutely amazing." after the Lost 52 project.

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The USS Grayback was on January 31, 1941, according to the Naval History and Heritage Command and quickly earned a fearsome reputation in the Pacific Theater. During 10 war patrols, it sank 14 enemy ships, including Japanese submarines, with a total of 63,835 tons. In January 1943, the crew of the submarine rescued six downed American airmen from Munda in the Solomons, for which their commanding officer received the Navy Cross.

  The wreck of the USS Grayback was found 50 nautical miles south of Okinawa. (Ocean Outreach / Lost 52 Project / YouTube)

The wreck of the USS Grayback was found 50 nautical miles south of Okinawa. (Ocean Outreach / Lost 52 Project / YouTube)

In the explanation, Tim Taylor, founder of Lost 52 Project, described the discovery as "absolutely amazing." The research team analyzed some of the last pieces of sonar data they had collected when they discovered what had proved to be the USS Grayback lying on the ocean floor.

Taylor is also the CEO of Tiburon Subsea, which supplies underwater technology equipment, and the founder of exploration organization Ocean Outreach.

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A video released by Ocean Outreach on November 10th on YouTube shows the damaged body of Grayback and a plaque bearing the name of the submarine and details of its construction in Croton, Conn., and its launch.

  The wreck lies at a depth of 1,427 feet. (Ocean Outreach / Lost 52 Project / YouTube)

The wreck lies at a depth of 1,427 feet. (Ocean Outreach / Lost 52 Project / YouTube)

The Japanese historian Hiroshi Iwasaki also played a decisive role in the discovery. The expert re-translated a primary report on the sinking of the Grayback and found that the longitude differs from a 1946 report. With the new coordinates, the Lost 52 project was able to target the area where the wreck was subsequently found.

The discovery closes the families of the USS Grayback crew. "[Seventy-five] Year-old puzzle solved and families with 80 sailors have closure: USS Grayback was found," tweeted the Naval History and Heritage Command on Sunday.

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  The USS Grayback sank with the loss of its 80-member crew. (Ocean Outreach / Lost 52 Project / YouTube)

The USS Grayback sank with the loss of its 80-member crew. (Ocean Outreach / Lost 52 Project / YouTube)

The USS Grayback is the fifth submarine discovered by the Lost 52 project. Earlier this year, the team found the bow of World War II submarine USS Grunion, 77 years after the submarine had disappeared off the remote Aleutian Islands in Alaska on its first patrol.

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  The USS Grayback was photographed in 1941. (Naval History and Heritage Comand. Catalog Number: NH 53771)

The USS Grayback was photographed in 1941. (Naval History and Heritage Comand. Catalog Number: NH 53771)

In a separate project, the deepest sunken shipwreck ever discovered, a World War II destroyer, was recently found in the Philippine Sea.

The wreck was discovered by experts on the research vessel at a depth of 20,406 feet. The explorers used an underwater drone to locate the mysterious ship. It is believed to be the USS Johnston, a Fletcher-class destroyer, sunk during the 1944 Battle of Samar, a key action in the Battle of the Gulf of Leyte.

Eerie footage shot by the drone shows the wreckage of the ship lying on the sea floor.

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Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers


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