Washington, Aug 21: USS Indianapolis, a World War II American Warship, which was torpedoed by the Japanese navy in 1945, was located by the researchers in the Pacific Ocean.
The ship was sunk 18000 feet below the surface of the Pacific Ocean when it was hit by a Japanese Submarine during the Second World War. Its remains were discovered by the US Navy researchers.
According to the Reuter report, the warship was returning after delivering components for the atom bomb that the Axis forces dropped on the Japanese city of Hiroshima when it was torpedoed by the Japanese submarine on July 30, 1945.
The Indianapolis sunk in just 12 minutes, according to the US Naval History and Heritage Command in Washington. There was no distress signal from the ship. It had 800 out of 1196 crew members aboard and 316 could be rescued and saved five days later. The remaining crew members were dead due to exposure, dehydration, drowning. Some others were devoured by the sharks.
However, the efforts to discover the remains of the lost warship were renewed after a Navy historian hit upon new information in 2016 about the last movements of the warship. They pointed to new search area and a team of civilian researchers was deployed on the mission to discover the remains of the warship. Paul Allen, Microsoft Corp co-founder led the team and spent months searching in a 1500 sq km patch of the Pacific Ocean.
Searching with a vessel fitted with equipment that could reach the deepest ocean floor, Allen’s team members succeeding in locating the wreckage of the ship somewhere in the Phillippine Sea on Friday, Allen said in statement on his website.
Allen said that the discovery was a humbling experience and this could play an important role in honouring the sailors and underlining their role in ending the World War II.
“While our search for the rest of the wreckage will continue, I hope everyone connected to this historic ship will feel some measure of closure at this discovery so long in coming,” Allen said in his statement.
The identification of the warship was easier as some of the wreckage was clearly marked with Indianapolis signage, according to photographs shared by Allen and the US Navy.
“It is exceedingly rare you find the name of the ship on a piece of the wreckage,” Paul Taylor, a spokesman for the Naval History and Heritage Command, said. “If that’s not Indianapolis then I don’t know what is.”
The Navy said it had plans to honor the 22 survivors from the Indianapolis still alive along with the families of the ship's crew. (Inputs from agencies)