3 NC sailors died aboard WWII submarine discovered after missing for 75 years

National News

A U.S. Navy submarine missing for 75 years has been found off Okinawa, Japan. The USS Grayback was discovered in June, according to the Lost 52 Project, a group of undersea explorers whose mission is to find the wrecks of every American submarine lost in World War II.

The Grayback sailed out of Pearl Harbor on January 28th, 1944, for its 10th combat patrol. Two months later, it was listed as missing and presumed lost.

Last year, an amateur researcher in Japan detected a mistake in the latitude and longitude of the spot where the Grayback probably sank. The records were off by a single digit — about 100 miles.

Three sailors who died aboard the USS Grayback were from North Carolina. All three were awarded the Purple Heart.

Marshall George, from Yanceyville, N.C. was a Motor Machinist’s Mate, Third Class in the U.S. Navy.

William Carson Hooks, of Whiteville, N.C. was a Fireman, First Class in the Navy.

William Gerard Nicholson, of Jacksonville, N.C. was a Chief Motor Machinist’s Mate in the Navy.

Earlier this year, using the new information, private explorers located the wreck of the Grayback under 1,400 feet of water. Tim Taylor, who heads the Lost 52 Project, told The New York Times his team was “elated” by the discovery. “But it’s also sobering, because we just found 80 men,” he said.

According to the Navy, the USS Grayback was one of the most successful submarines in the war, sinking a total of 14 ships.

Earlier this year, explorers with the Lost 52 Project found the USS Grunion, a submarine that sank in 1942 on its inaugural mission during World War II, off the coast of Alaska.

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