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NavSource Online: Submarine Photo Archive


Courtesy of US Sub Vets of World War II

Courtesy of BMCS Don McGrogan, USN (ret.)

Courtesy of naviosdeguerrabrasileiros.hpg.ig.com.br

Paddle (SS-263)

Radio Call Sign: November - Alpha - Quebec - Romeo

Gato Class Submarine: Laid down, 1 May 1942, at the Electric Boat Co., Groton, CT.; Launched, 30 December 1942; Commissioned USS Paddle (SS-263), 29 March 1943; Decommissioned, 1 February 1946, at New London, CT.; Laid up in the Atlantic Reserve Fleet, New London; Recommissioned, 31 August 1956; Decommissioned, 18 January 1957; Transferred, on loan, under the Mutual Defense Assistance Program, to Brazil, 18 January 1957, renamed Riachuelo (S-15); Decommissioned 14 October 1966; Deleted from the Brazilian Navy in March 1968; Struck from the US Naval Register, 30 June 1968; Final Disposition, used for spare parts by the Brazilian Navy. Paddle received 8 battle stars for World War II service.
Partial data submitted by Yves Hubert.

Specifications: Displacement, Surfaced: 1,526 t., Submerged: 2,424 t.; Length 311' 9"; Beam 27' 3"; Draft 15' 3"; Speed, Surfaced 20.25 kts, Submerged 8.75 kts; Complement 6 Officers 54 Enlisted; Operating Depth, 300 ft; Submerged Endurance, 48 hrs at 2 kts; Patrol Endurance 75 days; Cruising Range, 11,000 miles surfaced at 10 kts; Armament, ten 21" torpedo tubes, six forward, four aft, 24 torpedoes, one 3"/50 deck gun, two .50 cal. machine guns, two .30 cal. machine guns; Propulsion, diesel electric reduction gear with four Hoover, Owens, Rentschler Co. main generator diesel engines, 5,400HP, Fuel Capacity, 97,140 gal., four Allis Chalmers Manufacturing Co. main motors, 2,740HP, two 126-cell main storage batteries, twin screws.
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Paddle 17k Commemorative postal cover marking Paddle's (SS-263) keel laying, 1 May 1942, at the Electric Boat Co., Groton, CT. Courtesy of Jack Treutle.
Paddle 28k Commemorative postal cover marking the Paddle's (SS-263) launching, 30 December 1942. Courtesy of Jack Treutle.
Paddle 572k Paddle (SS-263) crew commsioning photo probably at Polly's Inn off West Norwich Road, Montville, CT. on 29 March 1943. Photo courtesy of R. Storm Cilley.
Paddle 115k Lt. Comdr. R. H. Rice in command of the Paddle (SS-263) with female accompaniment probably at the crew commsioning party on 29 March 1943. Photo courtesy of R. Storm Cilley.
Paddle 15k Commemorative postal cover marking the commissioning of the Paddle (SS-263), 29 March 1943. Courtesy of Jack Treutle.
Paddle 250k Paddle (SS-263) crewman Gene Cilley FC/1 receives a commendation from Rear Admiral T.C. Kinkaid during the boat's 4th War Patrol, 5 June-29 July 1943. Photo courtesy of R. Storm Cilley.
Paddle 119k After refit at Fremantle, Paddle (SS-263) made her fifth patrol 22 August-25 September, encountering few contacts in her assigned area in the Sulu Sea. On 7 September she sent cargo ship Shinyo Maru to the bottom and damaged another of her convoy. Text courtesy of DANFS.
Photo courtesy of Tommy Trampp.
Paddle 91k A possible soon to be Paddle (SS-263) victim awaits the torpedo tubes on one of her 8 war patrols. Photo courtesy of R. Storm Cilley.
PDF courtesy of Scott Koen & ussnewyork.com.
PDF added 02/11/14.
Paddle 675k Starboard view of the Paddle (SS-263) while she was in overhaul at Mare Island from 18 December 1943 until 26 February 1944. USN photo courtesy of ussubvetsofworldwarii.org.
Paddle 617k Bow view of the Paddle (SS-263), underway off Mare Island, California, 13 February, 1944. USN photo # 1014-44 courtesy of ussubvetsofworldwarii.org.
Paddle 207k Paddle (SS-263), starboard view underway off Mare Island, California, 13 February, 1944. USN photo # 1015-44 courtesy of John Hummel.
Paddle 103k Stern view of the Paddle (SS-263), underway off Mare Island, California, 13 February, 1944. USN photo # 1016-44 courtesy of ussubvetsofworldwarii.org.
Paddle 537k Starboard view of the Paddle (SS-263), underway off Mare Island, California, 13 February, 1944. USN photo # 1017-44 courtesy of ussubvetsofworldwarii.org.
Paddle 263k The destroyer HIJMS Hokaze under way in 1939, location unknown. Hokaze was torpedoed and sunk by the submarine Paddle (SS-263) on 6 July 1944, 105 m NNE of Sangir Island in the Celebes Sea (03 degrees 24' N, 125 degrees 28' E). Photo from "Japanese Naval Vessels of World War Two: as seen by U.S. Naval Intelligence" Introduction by A.D. Baker III. Arms and Armour Press, via Robert Hurst.
Photo added 02/11/14.
Paddle 55k Plaque dedicated to the survivors of the P.O.W. Hell Ship Shinyo Maru, sunk by the Paddle (SS-263) on 7 September 1944. Photo courtesy of R. Storm Cilley.
Paddle 43k Plaque dedicated to the survivors of the P.O.W. Hell Ship Shinyo Maru, sunk by the Paddle (SS-263) on the 54 anniversary, 7 September 1998. Photo courtesy of R. Storm Cilley.
Paddle 40k Unidentified boats (including the Paddle (SS-263) at some unknown forward base in the Pacific. Photo courtesy of R. Storm Cilley.
Paddle 54k Loading supplies on unidentified boats (including the Paddle (SS-263) at some unknown forward base in the Pacific. Photo courtesy of R. Storm Cilley.
Paddle 157k The battleflag of the Paddle (SS-263) after its 7th parol. Photo courtesy of R. Storm Cilley.
Paddle 165k Explaining a day at the office in the rear torpedo room of the Paddle (SS-263). Photo courtesy of R. Storm Cilley.
Paddle 110k A band plays in the background for the homecoming of the crew of the Paddle (SS-263). (maybe) Photo courtesy of R. Storm Cilley.
Paddle 112k Paddle (SS-263) crew picture following her 8 war patrols. Photo courtesy of R. Storm Cilley.
Paddle 2.50k A collection of 26 photos of the Paddle (SS-263) & crew during the boat's service time in PDF. Photo courtesy of R. Storm Cilley.
Paddle 269k The Paddle (SS-263) puddles along in this soon after war time photo. Photo courtesy of R. Storm Cilley.
post WW 2 476k Bow view of submarines post WW II at New London, Conn.
From inboard to outboard are six boats, four identified by hull numbers: Drum (SS-228), Halibut (SS-232), Haddo (SS-255) and Paddle (SS-263). Outboard of her are two numberless boats.
All the boats are decommissioned: none are flying colors or union jack. Date is after 16 February 1946 when Drum was decommissioned and before Halibut was sold for scrap on 10 January 1947. Halibut had suffered major damage by the Japanese and was considered beyond economical repair. She is the only one of the group not freshly painted, and has been stripped of deck guns and other gear, probably in preparation for sale.
The outboard boat has a small pennant flying from her jackstaff. The boats in commission popped up with numbers right away soon after VJ Day, so the outboard boats may just be getting painted up in Haze Grey in preparation for mothballing, with the numbers to follow. These two boats are older EB-built boats.
The inboard of the two numberless boats is likely the Gabilan (SS-252). It has a very distinct cutdown of the fairwater. The only similar picture I could find is the Gabilan (look at the last pic from the bottom of the Gabilan page). Same bridge cut down low like most other Gato's but the sides of the wagon train were not cut out so it is solid, not open like most other Gato's that were cut down that low. Also location of SJ and SD radar antennas is the same as the latest pic of Gabilan . Also venturi looks the same. Gabilan was decommissioned in 1946 and laid up at New London which would match the timing and location.
US Navy photo & text courtesy of David Buell.
Photo i.d. & text courtesy of John Hart.
post WW 2 380k Stern view of submarines post WW II at New London, Conn.
From inboard to outboard is the reverse of the above.
US Navy photo & text courtesy of David Buell.
Photo i.d. & text courtesy of John Hart.
Riachuelo (S-15)
Muskallunge & Plaice56k Humanita (S-14) in foreground & ex-Paddle (SS-263), now the Brazilian Riachuelo (S-15) operating together, circa 1959-60.Brazilian Navy photo courtesy of Jane's Fighting Ships" 1959-1960.
Photo submitted by Robert Hurst.
Paddle 173k Riachuelo's (S-15) conning tower. Note empty sockets of AA guns. Brazilian Navy photo from the collection of Paulo Soukup courtesy of Gary Priolo.
Paddle 62k ex-Paddle (SS-263) as the Riachuelo (S-15) circa 1960's. Brazilian Navy photo courtesy of naviosdeguerrabrasileiros.hpg.ig.com.br, & submitted by Valdo Novaes.
Paddle 155k Commemorative Centennial Pennant of the Braizilan Navy Flâmula comemorativa aos 100 anos da Batalha Naval do Riachuelo, 11 de junho de 1865 - 11 de junho de 1965. Brazilian Navy photo from the collection of Rogério Cordeiro courtesy of naval.com.br.

View the Paddle (SS-263)
DANFS history entry located on the Haze Gray & Underway Web Site.
Crew Contact And Reunion Information
U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation
Fleet Reserve Association

Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
Ep-21 (1) - Victory At Sea ~ Full Fathom Five - HQ

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