USS Indianapolis (CA-35) – 30 July 1945

Pacific Paratrooper

USS Indianapolis off Mare Island, 10 July 1945

Sadly, four days later after delivering the components of the atomic bomb from California to the Pacific Islands in the most highly classified naval mission of the war, USS Indianapolis is sailing alone in the center of the Philippine Sea when she is struck by two torpedoes and sunk within twelve minutes. The ship was without a sufficient number of lifeboats, her disappearance went unnoticed for almost four days and the navy search team was called off early. Therefore, only 316 men of her 1,196-man crew were rescued. This has been considered the most controversial sea disaster in American history.

For the next five nights and four days, almost three hundred miles from the nearest land, the men battle injuries, sharks, dehydration, insanity, and eventually each other. Only 316 will survive.  For the better part of a century, the story of USS 

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5 thoughts on “USS Indianapolis (CA-35) – 30 July 1945”

  1. According to the book on this disaster, the ship was sailing straight, not on the zigzag pattern to avoid torpedoes, and most of the deaths were due to sharks. This was a mess, badly mishandled.

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