She Sank With 389 Men!


Aircraft Carrier

Hiryū was an aircraft carrier built for the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN).  It was the only one ship of her class, a modified Soryu design.  Japanese word Hiryū means ‘Flying Dragon’.

Hiryū took part in Japanese invasion of French Indochina in mid 1940s, the attack on Pearl Harbor and the Battle of Wake Island.  Along with three other fleet carriers, she participated in the Battle of Midway Atoll in North Pacific Ocean in June 1942.

Initially, the Japanese forces managed to bombard US forces on the atoll. But on 4th June, 1942, the aircraft carriers were attacked by dive-bomber aircraft from USS Enterprise, USS Yorktown, USS Hornet and Midway Atoll.  Hiryū became severely crippled and was set on fire.

Japanese destroyer Makigumo torpedoed Hiryū on 5th June, 1942, as she could not be salvaged.  Only 39 men survived as after 4 hours, she sank with bodies of 389 men.  Three other Japanese carriers were also sunk during the Battle of Midway, a battle that saw Japan’s first naval defeat since the Battle of Shimonoseki Straits in 1863.

Source: Wikipedia