Friday, August 26, 2011

In Memoriam - USS Cochino (SS-345) Lost 26 August 1949

USS Cochino (SS-345) was a Balao-class submarine, built at the Electric Boat Company shipyard in Groton, Connecticut. Completed too late to see wartime service, she received a GUPPY II conversion in 1949.

Later that same year, she was assigned to conduct operations (probably surveillance and intelligence gathering) in the Barents Sea.

Cochino encountered a severe gale on 25 August, and a battery explosion and fire occurred. For the next fourteen hours, Cochino's officers and crew fought to save their submarine, but a second battery explosion occurred on 26 August, and the order to "Abandon Ship" was given. Fortunately, a sister ship, USS Tusk (SS-426) was operating in the area, and the crew was able to evacuate. One civilian engineer died aboard Cochino and six men from Tusk were also lost at sea.

Photograph courtesy of the Naval History and Heritage Command, Washington, DC.


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