The Howling Sea Wolf
Some 80 years ago: the Sargo-class fleet boat USS Seawolf (SS-197) seen waging her very successful “Maru War” in the Pacific while on her 7th war patrol.
Leaving Freemantle, Australia on 1 October 1942, Seawolf (LCDR F.B. Warder in command) was ordered to patrol off the Davao Gulf, southern Philippines.
In the same one-week period she would sink the Japanese water tender Gifu Maru (2933 GRT) west-south-west of Cape San Augustin, Mindoro, the Japanese troop transport Sagami Maru (7189 GRT) off Davao, and the Japanese auxiliary gunboat Keiko Maru (2929 GRT) off Cape San Augustin, Mindanao.
The sub would then end her patrol at Pearl Harbor on 1 December– just in time for a Christmas refit.
Seawolf would go on to be lost on her 15th war patrol, believed lost with 83 officers and men as well as 17 Army passengers, tragically believed sunk by friendly fire from aircraft from the escort carrier USS Midway (CVE 63) and the ASW weapons from the destroyer escort USS Richard M. Rowell (DE 403) off Morotai on 3 October 1944.
She was the most successful Sargo-class submarine, honored with 13 battle stars and credited with 71,609 tons of enemy shipping. She is one of 52 American submarines regarded as on Eternal Patrol.