Foreshadowing the Flier’s Final Rendezvous

Posted by Rebekah
Apr 21 2010

Today, the Flier will be running more training runs outside San Francisco, the Redfin and Robalo are both on patrol, and both about to undergo events that, in retrospect, would foreshadow their futures.

Robalo, seen in the green in the map below, is on her way into her first war patrol, heading for Sibutu Passage, and on to the Philippines.  We’ll return to her in a couple of days.

This map shows the track of Redfin (yellow) and Robalo (green) from 4/19/1944 to 4/21/1944. Original image from Google Earth, locations taken from the War Patrol Reports of Redfin and Robalo.

Redfin, seen in the yellow, was on her way home to Fremantle, after a very successful patrol.  She was supposed to go through Makassar Passage, and Lombok, when she received an order to turn around and head for Sibutu Passage for a Special Mission in Northwest Borneo.

At the end of the day, she found out what she was supposed to do: six British Nationals were trapped and needed to be picked up and transported to safety.  Redfin was selected in part because she was in the area and already on her way home.  (No submarine wanted to carry civilians for longer than was absolutely necessary).

One Response

  1. […] But life had to continue.  Perth called back saying that they had sent a submarine to pick up the survivors.  That night, by arrangement, Crowley radioed the rescuing submarine (he had been told one was being sent, but not who it was) and was shocked to hear his friend Cy Austin, commander of Redfin, who had been parked next to Flier most of the time in Fremantle.  After arranging signals (three lanterns hung in a row from the abandoned light on the point) for safety and a rendexvous point, Austin started to sing “Sweet Adeline” into the radio.  This confused Crowley a bit, but since both had been in the same barbershop quartet, he quickly joined in, singing his part.  Austin was satisfied that Crowley was the real deal and that he wasn’t being set up again. […]

Trackback URL for this entry