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Kraken (SS-370) 

(SS-370: dp. 1,526; l. 311'9" ; b. 27'3" ; dr. 15'3" ; s. 20 k.; cpl. 66; a. 1 5", 10 21" tt.; cl. Balao)

A legendary sea monster believed to haunt the coasts of Norway.

Kraken (SS-370) was launched 30 April 1944, by the Manitowoc Shipbuilding Co., Manitowoc, Wis.; sponsored by Mrs. John Z. Anderson, wife of Congressman Anderson of California; and commissioned 8 September 1944, Comdr. Thomas H. Henry in command.

Kraken steamed by way of Chicago to Lockport, III., 27 September 1944, and was towed in floating dry dock down the Mississippi River arriving at Algiers, La., 4 October. Ten days later Kraken cleared Algiers, transited the Panama Canal and underwent intensive training in the Gulf of Panama. She sailed for Hawaii 4 November and arrived Pearl Harbor the 21st.

Kraken departed Pearl Harbor 12 December 1944, for her first war patrol, touched at Saipan the 23d, set course for Indochina next morning. There she maintained lifeguard duty in support of 3d Fleet Carrier strikes. While on station she rescued a Lexington pilot from rough seas and evaded a strafing enemy plane by diving. Finding no targets Kraken set course for Fremantle, Australia, arriving there 14 February 1945.

Kraken departed on her second war patrol 15 March and maintained lifeguard duty in the South China Sea supporting aircraft carrier strikes against Singapore and Saigon. She returned to Subic Bay, P.I., 26 April.

Departing on her third war patrol on 19 May 1945, Kraken set course for the Gulf of Siam. After searching in vain for enemy targets, she shifted to the Java Sea where on 19 June she bombarded Merak and riddled a coaster and a small ship with 5-inch and 40mm. projectiles. She saw the coaster sink and she left the small ship ablaze before clearing the harbor. Three days later, while chasing an eight-ship convoy, Kraken's torpedoes sank an oiler and a coastal steamer and her guns inflicted heavy damage on one of the Japanese submarine chasers. Then Kraken proudly sailed into Fremantle, Australia, 3 July 1945, ending her most successful patrol.

Kraken sailed on her fourth and last patrol 29 July. While seeking the enemy in the Java Sea, her patrol was cut short when she received news of Japan's capitulation. Sailing for Subic Bay, she arrived 21 August.

Kraken cleared Subic Bay 31 August 1945, touched at Pearl Harbor, and arrived at San Francisco 22 September. On 14 October she rendezvoused with Halsey's 3d Fleet and formed a part of honor escort for Admiral Halsey, as he passed under the Golden Gate Bridge in Flagship, South Dakota. Ten days later Kraken visited Longview, Wash., for the first postwar Navy Day celebrations and returned to San Francisco 31 October where she was placed out of commission 4 May 1946.

Kraken remained in reserve status until 18 September 1958, when she was assigned to Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard for activation overhaul and fitting out preparatory to transfer for loan to the Spanish Government 17 October 1958. She serves the Spanish Navy as Almirante Garcia (S-31).

Kraken received one battle star for World War II service.

Published: Thu Apr 21 07:38:56 EDT 2016