Join us on Saturday July 11, 2015 at 2:00 pm for 70th anniversary commemoration of the USS COD’s rescue of the crew of the stranded Dutch submarine O19 in the South China Sea. Part of the celebration will be a reenactment of this unique event in naval history:
On July 8, 1945 the O19 was on her way from a patrol in the South China Sea to the Philippines when it struck Ladd Reef, a coral reef in the South China Sea, submerged due to high tide. They sent out a distress call, and the next day the USS COD arrived on the scene. For two days the USS COD tried to pull the O19 off the reef. When all attempts had failed the decision was made to destroy the O19 as to not let its secrets fall in Japanese hands. Demolition charges were placed, two torpedoes were fired and destroy the aft, and 16 shells of the 5-inch deck gun finished the job.
153 American and Dutch submariners lived together on the USS COD for several days traveling to safety. The USS COD became an adopted member of the Dutch Onderzeedienst (submarine service) to pay tribute to the unique rescue mission and friendship between submariners of two allied nations.
The only international sub-to-sub rescue in history is commemorated every year aboard the USS COD with a reenactment of the transfer of the Dutch flag aboard the US sub, and a celebration of the enduring friendship between two submarine crews and two great nations. This year, the 70th anniversary commemoration, will be attended by dignitaries from both the US and Dutch Armed Forces. Captain Hugo Ammerlaan, Commander Royal Netherlands Navy Submarines Division, will be part of the reenactment, portraying the wartime O19 skipper LCDR Drijfhout van Hooff.
A punch and cake reception follows the ceremony on USS COD grounds.
Admission to the event (between 1:00 pm and 3:00 pm only) is free of charge.
The submarine USS COD is docked on North Marginal Road, between E. 9th St. and Burke Lakefront Airport, on Cleveland’s North-coast Harbor.
For questions and more information about the USS COD, please visit their website