USS Cod (SS-224)

USS Cod (SS-224)

USS "Cod" (SS/AGSS/IXSS-224) is a "Gato"-class submarine, the only vessel of the United States Navy to be named for the cod, the well-known food fish of the North Atlantic and North Pacific.

"Cod" was launched on 21 March 1943 by the Electric Boat Company of Groton, Connecticut, sponsored by Mrs. G.M. Mahoney. She was commissioned on 21 June 1943 with Lieutenant Commander James C. Dempsey (Class of 1931) in command.

World War II

"Cod" arrived in Brisbane, Australia, on 2 October 1943 to prepare for her first war patrol, on which she sailed 20 days later. Penetrating the South China Sea, she contacted few targets, and launched an attack only once, on 29 November, with unobserved results. Returning to Fremantle, Western Australia, to refit from 16 December to 11 January 1944, "Cod" put to sea for her second war patrol in the South China Sea, off Java, and off Halmahera. On 16 February, she surfaced to sink a sampan by gunfire, and on 23 February, torpedoed a Japanese merchantman. She sent another to the bottom on 27 February and two days later attacked a third, only to be forced deep by a concentrated depth charging delivered by an alert escort ship.

Refitting at Fremantle again from 13 March to 6 April 1944, "Cod" sailed to the Sulu Sea and the South China Sea off Luzon for her third war patrol. On 10 May, she daringly attacked a heavily escorted convoy of 32 ships and sank destroyer "Karukaya" and a cargo ship before the escorts concentrated to drive her down with depth charges. Returning to Fremantle to replenish 1 June, she cleared 3 July on her fourth war patrol, under the command of CDR James "Caddy" Adkins. She ranged from the coast of Luzon to Java. She sank a merchantman on 3 August, and a landing craft, "LSV-129", on 14 August, and, once more successful, returned to Fremantle 25 August.

"Cod" put to sea on her fifth war patrol 18 September 1944, bound for Philippine waters. She made her first contact, a cargo ship, on 5 October, and sent it to the bottom. Two days later, she inflicted heavy damage on a tanker. Contacting a large convoy on 25 October, "Cod" launched several attacks without success. With all her torpedoes expended, she continued to shadow the convoy for another day to report its position. In November she took up a lifeguard station off Luzon, ready to rescue carrier pilots carrying out the series of air strikes on Japanese bases which paved the way for the invasion of Leyte later that month.

"Cod" returned to Pearl Harbor on 20 November 1944, and sailed on to a stateside overhaul, returning to Pearl Harbor on 7 March 1945. On 24 March she sailed for the East China Sea on her sixth war patrol. Assigned primarily to lifeguard duty, she also sank a tug and its tow by gunfire on 17 April, rescuing three survivors, and on 24 April launched an attack on a convoy which resulted in the most severe depth charging of her career. The next day, she sent the minesweeper "W-41" to the bottom. On 26 April "Cod" was threatened by a fire in the after torpedo room, but was saved by the heroism and skill of her men who fought the fire under control and manually fired a torpedo already in its tube before the fire could explode it. One man was lost overboard during the emergency.

After refitting at Guam between 29 May and 26 June 1945, "Cod" put out for the Gulf of Siam and the coast of Indo-China on her seventh war patrol under the command of LCDR Edwin M. Westbrook, Jr. On 9 July and 10 July she went to the rescue of a grounded Dutch submarine "O-19", taking its crew on board and destroying the submarine when it could not be gotten off the reef, the only international submarine-to-submarine rescue in history. After returning the Dutch sailors to Subic Bay, between 21 July and 1 August, "Cod" made 20 gunfire attacks on the junks, motor sampans, and barges which were all that remained to supply the Japanese at Singapore. After inspecting each contact to rescue friendly natives, "Cod" sank it by gunfire, sending a total of 23 to the bottom. On 1 August, an enemy plane strafed "Cod", forcing her to dive leaving one of her boarding parties behind. These men were rescued two days later by USS|Blenny|SS-324|3.

When "Cod" returned to Fremantle 13 August 1945, the crew of "O-19" was waiting throw a party for their rescuers. During that celebration, the two crews learned of the Japanese surrender. To symbolize that happy moment, another symbol was added to "Cod"’s battle flag: the name "O-19" under a martini glass [] .

"Cod" sailed for home on 31 August. Arriving in New London, on 3 November after a visit to Miami, Florida, "Cod" sailed to Philadelphia for overhaul, returning to New London where she was decommissioned and placed in reserve 22 June 1946.

1951 – 1971

"Cod" was recommissioned in 1951, under the command of CAPT. Francis E. Rich, to participate in NATO anti-submarine training exercises. Her Cold War voyages took "Cod" to St. John's Newfoundland, as well as ports in Cuba and South America. During LANTFLEX '52 fleet exercise, Cod was credited with "sinking" a U.S. aircraft carrier.

"Cod" was decommissioned in 1954 and placed in reserve. In 1959 she was towed through the newly opened St. Lawrence Seaway to serve as a naval reserve training vessel in Cleveland, Ohio. The veteran submarine was an instant hit with school children who visited her on field trips. "Cod" was reclassified an Auxiliary Submarine (AGSS-224), 1 December 1962, and a Miscellaneous Unclassified Submarine, (IXSS-224), 30 June 1971. In 1971, no longer useful as a training ship, "Cod" was stricken from the Naval Vessel Register.

"Cod" is credited with sinking more than 12 enemy vessels totalling more than 37,000 tons, and damaging another 36,000 tons of enemy shipping. All seven of her war patrols were considered "successful" and "Cod" was awarded seven battle stars.

Museum ship


"Cod" is now a museum ship in Cleveland, Ohio and is maintained and operated as a memorial to the more than 3900 submariners who lost their lives during the 100 year history of the United States Navy Submarine Force. The public is invited to visit the boat daily between May 1 and September 30 each year.

"Cod" is one of the finest restored submarines on display and is the only U.S. submarine that has not had stairways and doors cut into her pressure hull for public access. Visitors to this proud ship use the same vertical ladders and hatches that were used by her crew. Cleveland can claim partial credit as "Cod"'s birthplace, since the submarine's four massive diesel engines were built by General Motors' Cleveland Diesel plant on Cleveland's west side.

The "Cod" memorial recently acquired two GM Cleveland Model 248 engines that had originally been used aboard another WW-II submarine, USS|Stingray|SS-186|3. The two engines will be used for parts for the restoration of "Cod"'s engines.

USS "Cod" combat statistics

*"Cod" sailed 88,254 miles during her seven patrol runs (exclusive of miles sailed to and from the USA).
*"Cod" burned 1,023,963 gallons of diesel fuel.
*Total patrol days were 415, with 108 of them submerged from dawn to dusk.
*During her seven WW-II war patrols "Cod" fired 122 torpedoes recording 39 hits.
*Her skippers claimed 10 ships sunk and 5 damaged by torpedo. This is the same average torpedo/ship sinking ratio as for all US subs during WW-II—that is, one ship sunk for every 12 torpedoes fired. In comparison, the German U-boats sank one ship for every four torpedoes fired.
*"Cod" also destroyed another five ships, 24 junks and 11 floating mines as "sunk by gun fire".
*"Cod"'s deck guns fired 117 rounds of 4 inch 50-caliber; 117 rounds of 5 inch 25-caliber, 1,404 rounds of 40 mm, 200 rounds of 20 mm, and 1,450 rounds of .50-caliber machine gun ammo.


External links

* [ USS "Cod"]
* [ USS "Cod"]
* [ USS "Cod"]
* [ USS "Cod" website]
* [ List of the men who served on the "Cod"]
* [ HNSA Web Page: USS Cod]

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