went into a tight turn and carm back for a strafing run in less than a minute. He found the freighter sinking by the stern with her deck already under water. Illumination provided by the plane's tracers disclosed personnel abandoning ship. Contact could not be reestablished thereafter and twenty minutes continuous search of the area failed to yield either radar indication or visual sighting.

February 5-6 - Lieutenant Allen J, HUTTENBERG, USNR covered the sector which

includes the Sakashima Gunto. While searching among the islands of this group at 0415 Item he sighted the phosporescent wake of a ship entering the bay on the northwest side of Ishigaki Shima. On closer inspection it proved to be a Sugar Charlie type freighter considerably larger than the usual vessel of this class and estimated at 1000 tons. It was making a speed of six knots. On his first bombing run, which was made from starboard quarter to port bow, Lieutenant HUTTENBERG dropped a string of two 100 pound and two 500 pound bombs from 100 feet. The two 500's which were in the center of the string straddled the ship and each of them hit within ten feet of it. The freighter was completely enveloped in the resulting geyser of water from the double explosion and when next seen was settling by the stern and dead in the water. Returning immediately for a second run Lieutenant HUTTENBERG dropped one 100 lb. bomb and one incendiary cluster by emergency release. Both bombs hit just aft of amidships. Observers in the plane saw flying debris from the explosion and a white substance (apparently rice) covering the water around the ship. A third run was made with Lieutenant HUTTENBERG flying the plane and Ensign Robert L. POTTER dropping a single 100 pound bomb. Again a direct hit was made. Returning immediately over the ship to observe, Lieutenant HUTTENBERG found that the after section including the superstructure was wrecked, and that the vessel was down by the stern with water appearing to cover the deck as far forward as the after hatch. The white substance on the water had by this time formed a circle approximately 300 feet in diameter around the ship.




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