Kisaragi (1925)

Destroyer No. 21 at anchor in February, 1927. She would not receive the name Kisaragi for another year and a half. Photo in the collection of the Kure Maritime Museum.

Ship Class
Ship Type
Laid Down

Laid down as Destroyer No.21 on 3 June, 1924, the Mutsuki-class destroyer Kisaragi was commissioned on 21 December, 1925. The second of the class to commission, Kisaragi received her name on 1 August, 1928, along with most of the rest of the IJN destroyer force. Kisaragi likely saw some action off China in the 1930s, but she was assigned to support the invasion of Wake Island in December, 1941. On 11 December, she was shelling Wake Island during the abortive first invasion attempt. As the IJN surface force pulled back after the loss of the destroyer Hayate, Kisaragi was hit by one or two bombs from an F4F Wildcat of VMF-211. The exact result is unknown, but Kisaragi exploded and sank with her entire crew of 150. The explosion was probably either a result of her depth charges or possibly her boilers detonating from the bombs.

Bonus Information

Fun Fact: Kisaragi was the second ship of her class laid down, but commissioned before Mutsuki, the lead ship.

Bonus Fact: The pilot credited with Kisaragi's demise is Captain Henry Elrod, who posthumously received the Medal of Honor, partly for the sinking.