Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Day 954 April 11, 1942

Bataan Death March. Japanese massacre 350 Filipino POWs (91st Division) as they march North around Mount Samat towards the transfer station at Balanga. All afternoon, men are beheaded or bayoneted (Pantingan River Massacre). As POWs pour into Balanga, promised food, water and medical treatment fail to materialize. Dysentery and other diseases start to spread due to overcrowding.

New Guinea. US Douglas A-20 Havocs attack Japanese shipping in the Gulf of Huon off the town of Lae, badly damaging the cargo vessel Taijun Maru (later scuttled).

US submarine USS Trout damages Japanese tanker Nisshin Maru 5 miles off the South coast of Japan.

Mediterranean. Northwest of Corfu, HMS Torbay surfaces and attacks 2 tiny Italian schooners with gunfire, sinking schooners Gesu Crocifisso with 50 rounds from the deck gun while schooner Natalina runs aground and is wrecked. British destroyer HMS Kingston, at dry dock in La Valletta harbour, Malta, is hit by bombers and destroyed.

Italian submarine Calvi sinks Norwegian vessel Balkis off the coast of Brazil.

60 miles Southeast of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, British anti-submarine trawler HMT St. Cathan sinks after a collision with Dutch freighter Hebe. At 4.22 AM 5 miles off Jacksonville, Florida, U-123 torpedoes US tanker SS Gulfamerica, on her maiden voyage, carrying 101,500 barrels of furnace oil which explodes (19 killed, 29 survivors rescued by Coast Guard vessels). The burning wreck of SS Gulfamerica sinks 5 days later. At 1.20 PM 7 miles South of Cape Fear, North Carolina, U-203 torpedoes US tanker SS Harry F. Sinclair, Jr. carrying 66,000 barrels of gasoline which burst into flame (all 36 crew abandon ship in 3 lifeboats and a raft but 10 die when their lifeboat is engulfed in burning gasoline, 26 survivors picked up by British anti-submarine trawler HMS Hertfordshire). The burned out wreck will be towed to Baltimore, repaired and returned to service in 1943 as SS Annibal. At 10.31 PM 45 miles East of Cape Fear, U-160 sinks British passenger steamer SS Ulysses (all 190 crew, 5 gunners and 95 passengers picked up by US destroyer USS Manley). At 6.55 PM 580 miles Northeast of St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, U-130 sinks Norwegian MV Grenanger (all 36 crew abandon ship in a motor launch & a lifeboat and arrive at St. Thomas 8 days later).

Burma. British tanks and infantry have withdrawn up the Irrawaddy River valley and formed a defensive line from Minhia on the Irrawaddy River, East to Taungdwingyi and Pyinmana (to protect the oilfields at Yenangyaung 35 miles further North). Overnight, “on a pitch-dark night lit by violent thunderstorms”, Japanese begin the assault on this line with an attack 48th Indian Brigade at Kokkogwa.


  1. My blog today is about the other end of the Bataan death march: the rescue at Cabanatuan. www.wwiidoctor.blogspot.com

  2. Can't wait until you reach 1st October 1942 simply because that's the date I was called up into the army :)

    Best regards and more power to your elbow !