With the confirmed identification of the legendary World War II submarine by the U.S. Navy, a significant chapter in the history of the Silent Service can be closed.
The final seven hours must have been horrific for "Mush the Magnificent" and the crew of one of World War II's most famous submarines. Experts surmise the USS Wahoo (SS-238) was returning from another successful war patrol when the boat encountered antisubmarine forces in the 25-mile-wide La Perouse Strait separating Hokkaido, Japan, and Russia's Sakhalin Island to the north. Under intense artillery, aircraft, and naval bombardment, Commander Dudley "Mushmouth" Morton tried desperately to reach deep water. But the luck of the Wahoo had run out. For decades, relatives have searched for clues to the disappearance. Russian divers' discovery of wreckage this past July and the U.S. Navy's official confirmation in October that it was the Wahoo resolves a mystery that had haunted the Silent Service for more than 60 years.