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Iconic World War II Submarine USS Harder Discovered
By Ian Bongso-Seldrup, May 24, 2024 @ 08:00 AM (EST)
Source: BBC

The wreckage of World War II submarine USS Harder has been found almost exactly 80 years after it was sunk by a depth-charge attack from a Japanese escort vessel on August 29th, 1944. Tim Taylor, CEO of Tiburon Subsea, and the Lost 52 Project announced on May 22nd that they had discovered the wreck of the Harder in the South China Sea near the Philippines—one of the main Pacific battlegrounds of the Second World War. The wreck sits mostly intact and upright at a depth of 3,750 feet (1,140 meters) off the Philippines’ northern island of Luzon. There is a large hole on the port side just aft of the conning tower, indicating the submarine likely received a direct hit by a depth charge.

One of the most famous submarines of World War II, the Harder received the Presidential Unit Citation, while the commanding officer throughout her service, Commander Samuel D. Dealey (1906–1944), was awarded four Navy Crosses during his lifetime, as well as the U.S.’s highest military decoration—the Medal of Honor—after his death. According to the U.S. Navy’s History and Heritage Command (NHHC), the submarine sank three Japanese destroyers and heavily damaged two others over four days during one of its final war patrols. This resulted in the Japanese changing their battle plans and delaying their carrier force, which contributed to their defeat.

The Lost 52 Project is a private organization founded by Tim Taylor to do research on the 52 U.S. Navy submarines lost on patrol during World War II. The USS Harder was the 13th submarine discovered by the team.



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