USS PUFFER (SS 268) OUR COMBAT HERITAGE

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Photo courtesy of Craig McDonald crmcdona@indiana.edu
Craig wrote: Puffer crew from around November 1944.
My dad is the second from the right of those men standing
(just to the  left of the man squatting on the gang plank).

2010 addition:  MoMM3c Roy M. Miller SS268 Photo Collection

USS PUFFER SHIPS PARTY
PEARL HARBOR
MARCH 1946
 

 There are many cameo photos without captions.  Can any of you salty old 268 sailors help identify them?


PUFFER (SS-268) was launched 22 November 1942 by Manitowoc Shipbuilding Co., Manitowoc, Wisconsin; sponsored by Mrs. Ruth B. Lyons; and commissioned 27 April 1943, Lieutenant Commander M. J. JENSEN in command.

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After trials in Lake Michigan, PUFFER departed for the Pacific via the Mississippi River and Panama Canal, arriving at Darwin, Australia, 6 September 1943. She departed the following day for her first war patrol in the Makassar Strait and Celebes Sea area. On 17 September she torpedoed and sank an enemy freighter and damaged a transport. On 9 October she fired two torpedoes into the side of a large merchantman and, for her efforts, received an extensive 31 -hour counter-attack by angry escorts. PUFFER returned to Darwin on 17 October 1943, and then steamed to Fremantle, Australia, for refit and repairs.

On 24 November PUFFER sailed on her second war patrol, in the Sulu Sea and the approaches to Manila. On 20 December she sank Japanese destroyer Fuyo, and on 1 January 1944, freighter Ryuyo Maru. She also sank a picket trawler by gunfire and took the skipper prisoner. Two additional freighters and one auxiliary naval tender were damaged. PUFFER returned to Fremantle on 12 January 1944 for refit.

PUFFER departed for her third war patrol on 4 February, which was conducted in the South China Sea. On 22 February an enemy transport was sighted off the Natoena Islands on the lane between Singapore and Brunei, Borneo. PUFFER fired a spread of torpedoes that sent transport Teikyo Maru to the bottom. No more contacts were made on the patrol and PUFFER returned to Fremantle 4 April 1944.

On 30 April, PUFFER departed for her fourth war patrol in Madoera Straits, Makassar Straits, and the Sulu Sea. She acted as life guard for the first Allied carrier strike on Soerabaja, sank freighter Shinryu Maru 18 May, then on 5 June, attacked three tankers, sinking Ashizuri and Takasaki and damaging the other. She returned to Fremantle 21 June.

On 14 July 1944, PUFFER departed for her fifth war patrol, in Makassar Straits, the Celebes, Sulu, and South China Seas. In the northern approaches to Makassar Strait she contacted and sank an enemy submarine tender. The thwarted escorts subjected PUFFER to a barrage of 30 depth charges. On 12 August she sank tanker Teikon Maru, a freighter, and damaged another tanker which was already beached. She terminated her patrol at Pearl Harbor, then she continued on to Mare Island for overhaul.

Following refresher training at Pearl Harbor, PUFFER got underway on her sixth war patrol 16 December. Operating in the Nansei Shoto area, she sank Coast Defense Vessel No. 42 on 10 January 1945, and damaged a destroyer, three freighters, and a tanker, all prior to her arrival at Guam, 17 January. By 11 February, PUFFER was underway again and following patrol in Luzon Straits and the South China Sea where she bombarded Pratas Island, she made an anti-shipping sweep of the Wake Island area, returning to Midway Island to complete her seventh patrol.

Refitted at Midway, she departed 20 May enroute to the South China and Java Seas to conduct her eighth war patrol. In a surface sweep of the northern Bali coast on 5 July, PUFFER destroyed, by gunfire, two sea trucks and six landing craft, and inflicted extensive damage to harbor installations at Chelukan Bawang and Buleng, Bali. Following a brief stop at Fremantle, she headed north for her ninth and final war patrol in the Java Sea.

Completing that patrol with the cessation of hostilities, PUFFER headed for Subic Bay, then to the United States, reaching San Francisco 15 October 1945. PUFFER decommissioned 28 June 1946 and was berthed at Mare Island as a unit of the Pacific Reserve Fleet.

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In addition to the Navy Unit Commendation, PUFFER received nine battle stars for her World War II service.

 

SS 268 Reunion Page - 2002

8X10 Photos of SS268 are available from:
The Floating Drydock
C/O General Delivery
Kresgeville, PA 18333
http://floatingdrydock.com

War Years Muster List
New Addition to the Site! 

Have a family member who you think served on Puffer?
These lists were developed by Craig McDonald from microfilm.

The following message was provided by Craig to explain his work.
There are slightly over 200 sailors that were on the Puffer from the time of commissioning
until the end of the war. If the cell is shaded the sailor was on that war patrol.
I think it will be useful.  I hope I haven't made too many errors. I've been through the data
3 times trying to verify it.  Sorry there are no officers on the list.  Officers are not on the muster rolls.

HTML Version Muster List

Muster List Excel Spreadsheet

Ships Log transcribed by Craig McDonald

First War Patrol part one

First War Patrol part two

Post War Report

Seventh War Patrol

Eighth War Patrol

Eighth War Patrol Video

VHS tapes are available for the SS268 8th war patrol video.  16+  minutes of footage.
Tapes were converted from 16 MM film to VHS by Craig McDonald.
Over two hundred dollars were spent obtaining and converting these tapes.  You can own
a copy for just $10.00 postage paid.

Send $10.00  Check or Money Order to:

Craig McDonald
1305 E. Prairie Dr.
Bloomington, IN 47408
crmcdona@indiana.edu

Ships History | Vital Statistics | Unit Awards | The Name Puffer | Launching
WESTPAC 71 | Commanding Officers | Plank Owners | Decommissioning Crew