primary assignment on this, her first, patrol was to serve as lifeguard
for B-29 bombers making raids on the Japanese empire.
During this patrol Torsk took station off Kii Suido, and later off
Honshu. Part of this time she
operated with submarines Sandlance, Cero,
and Guardfish. By that time, naval operations against the Japanese merchant
marine had sunk so many ships that submarines found very few targets.
Only two small ships were contacted.
Torpedoes were fired, but none hit and the attacks were not a success.
Torsk returned to Pearl Harbor on the 16th of June
and commenced a repair and upkeep period. New sonar equipment was installed that
would permit her to travel through the minefields around Japan while submerged.
Torsk returned to Pearl Harbor on the 16th of June and commenced a repair and upkeep period. New sonar equipment was installed that would permit her to travel through the minefields around Japan while submerged.
Torsk departed Pearl Harbor on 17
July, arriving at Guam on 1 August for a two day stop. Then she
went on to the Sea of Japan, passing submerged through the minefields of
Tsushima Strait on 10 August. On 11
August she rescued seven Japanese seamen whose ship had been sunk by a U.S.
plane. On 12 August she had her
first combat action when she fired two torpedoes and sank a small freighter.
The next day Torsk torpedoed and sank a small cargo ship, the Kaiho Maru. The following day, 14 August, she completed her wartime career by sinking two more small ships, Coast Defense Vessel No. 13 and Coast Defense Vessel No. 47 . This action earned Torsk the distinction of firing the last torpedo and sinking the last Japanese combatant ships of World War II as the “Cease fire” order went out to all U.S. forces on 15 August.
Torsk stayed on station in the Sea
of Japan, sinking floating mines and conducting surveillance for several more
days. On 31 August, the crew sighted what was thought to be a torpedo wake,
indicating that there were still dangers even though the war was officially
over. On 1 September, she was released from her patrol and headed home, back
through the Tsushima Strait, arriving at the Marianas Islands on 3 September. On
9 September she arrived in Guam, successfully completing her patrol.