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SM1C Henry Roy “Pete” Black, Jr

SM1C Henry Roy “Pete” Black, Jr

Birth
Greencastle, Franklin County, Pennsylvania, USA
Death 24 Oct 1944 (aged 23)
At Sea
Burial Manila, Metro Manila, National Capital Region, Philippines
Plot Tablets of the Missing
Memorial ID 56781209 · View Source
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Rank/Rate Signalman, First Class
Service Number 295 50 15
Birth Date September 4, 1921
From Newmarket, New Hampshire
Decorations Purple Heart
Submarine USS Shark (SS-314)
Loss Date October 24, 1944
Location Between Hainan and Bashi Channel
Circumstances Probably sunk by depth charge attack
Henry was born in Greencastle, Pennsylvania.

Husband of Doris Pearl Black who resided in Newmarket, New Hampshire during the war.

Photo and information courtesy of Audry Nicholson, half-sister

Thank you to Judy Richards for the following:

Henry Roy "Pete" Black, Jr.

Rank/Rate Signalman, First Class
Service Number 295 50 15
Birth Date September 4, 1921
From Newmarket, New Hampshire
Decorations Purple Heart
Submarine USS Shark (SS-314)
Loss Date October 24, 1944
Location Between Hainan and Bashi Channel
Circumstances Probably sunk by depth charge attack
Remarks Henry was born in Greencastle, Pennsylvania.

Photo and information courtesy of Audry Nicholson, half-sister.

Shark (SS-314)

Compiled by Paul W. Wittmer and Charles R. Hinman, originally from:

U.S. Submarine Losses World War II, NAVPERS 15,784, 1949 ISSUE

Joining SEADRAGON and BLACKFISH at Pearl Harbor, the second SHARK (Cdr. E. N. Blakely) left that place on 23 September 1944, and proceeded to Saipan to begin her third war patrol. The three vessels left the latter island on 3 October to conduct a coordinated patrol in the vicinity of Luzon Strait. Commander Blakely had command of this coordinated attack group, called Blakely's Behemoths.

On 22 October, SHARK reported having contacted four large enemy vessels in Latitude 20° 28'N, Longitude 117° 50'E. She still had her full load of torpedoes aboard, so had not made an attack. SHARK addressed no further messages to bases, but on 24 October, SEADRAGON received a message from her stating that she had made radar contact with a single freighter, and that she was going in to attack. This was the last message received from SHARK.

However, on 13 November 1944, a despatch originated by Commander Naval Unit, Fourteenth Air Force, stated that a Japanese ship enroute from Manila to Japan, with 1800 American prisoners of war had been sunk on 24 October by an American submarine in a torpedo attack. No other submarine reported the attack, and since SHARK had given SEADRAGON a contact report only a few hours before the sinking, and could not be raised by radio after it, it can only be assumed that SHARK made the attack described and perished during or after it. Five prisoners who survived and subsequently reached China stated that conditions on the prison ship were so intolerable that the prisoners prayed for deliverance from their misery by a torpedo or bomb. Because many prisoners of war had been rescued from the water by submarines after sinking vessels in which they were being transported, U.S. submarines had been instructed to search for Allied survivors in the vicinity of all sinkings of Empire bound Japanese ships. SHARK may well have been sunk trying to rescue American prisoners of war. All attempts to contact SHARK by radio failed and on 27 November she was reported as presumed lost.

A report from the Japanese received after the close of the war on anti-submarine attacks; records the attack made by SHARK on 24 October 1944, in Latitude 20° 41'N, Longitude 118° 27'E. Depth charges were dropped 17 times, and the enemy reports having seen "bubbles, and heavy oil, clothes, cork, etc." Several American submarines report having been attacked on this date near the position given, but in view of the fact that none reported the attack on the convoy cited above, this attack is considered the most probable cause of SHARK's loss.

SHARK sank five ships, totaling 32,200 tons and damaged two, for 9,900 tons prior to her last patrol. Her first patrol was in the area west of the Marianas. SHARK sank two freighters, a transport and a large tanker, and damaged a freighter, In her second patrol in the Bonins, SHARK sank a medium freighter.

Gravesite Details Entered the service from Tennessee.

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  • Maintained by: Jeff Hall
  • Originally Created by: CWGC/ABMC
  • Added: 8 Aug 2010
  • Find A Grave Memorial 56781209
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for SM1C Henry Roy “Pete” Black, Jr (4 Sep 1921–24 Oct 1944), Find A Grave Memorial no. 56781209, citing Manila American Cemetery and Memorial, Manila, Metro Manila, National Capital Region, Philippines ; Maintained by Jeff Hall (contributor 47296194) .