Royal Lawrence Rutter, USN

Born  5 Oct 1907


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Ranks

1 May 1938 Lt.
15 Jun 1942 T/Lt.Cdr.
15 Oct 1942 T/Cdr.
15 Nov 1945 T/Capt.

Decorations

Warship Commands listed for Royal Lawrence Rutter, USN


ShipRankTypeFromTo
USS Dolphin (169)Lt.Submarine18 Feb 1942mid 1942
USS Dolphin (169)T/Lt.Cdr.Submarinemid 1942early 1943
USS Seadragon (194)T/Cdr.Submarine5 Mar 194321 Feb 1944
USS Kete (369)T/Cdr.Submarine31 Jul 194430 Jan 1945

Career information

We currently have no career / biographical information on this officer.

Events related to this officer

Submarine USS Dolphin (169)


14 May 1942
USS Dolphin (Lt.Cdr. Royal Lawrence Rutter) left Pearl Harbor for her 2nd war patrol. She was ordered to patrol west of Midway. She was at Midway from 8 to 11 June for some repairs but then continued her patrol.

26 Jun 1942 (position 31.00, 133.53)
USS Dolphin (Lt.Cdr. R.L. Rutter) attacked a Japanese oiler with torpedoes south of Japan in position 31°00'N, 133°53'E. Dolphin claims two hits but Japanese records don't show any evidence on this.

24 Jul 1942
USS Dolphin (Lt.Cdr. R.L. Rutter) ended her 2nd war patrol when she returned to Pearl Harbor.

12 Oct 1942
USS Dolphin (Lt.Cdr. R.L. Rutter) left base for her 3th war patrol. She was to patrol of the Kuril Islands.

5 Dec 1942
USS Dolphin (Lt.Cdr. R.L. Rutter) ended her 3th and last war patrol. With new construction submarines available for offensive war patrols, the older Dolphin was assigned to training duties.


Submarine USS Seadragon (194)


8 Apr 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) started a period of trials off San Francisco.

17 Apr 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) departed San Francisco for Pearl Harbour.

23 Apr 1943
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) arrived at Pearl Harbour from San Francisco.

24 Apr 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) was docked at Pearl Harbour.

30 Apr 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) was undocked.

2 May 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) conducted exercises off Pearl Harbour.

3 May 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) conducted exercises off Pearl Harbour.

4 May 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
During 4 and 5 May 1943, USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN), conducted exercises off Pearl Harbour. These included night exercises.

6 May 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) conducted exercises off Pearl Harbour.

9 May 1943
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) departed from Pearl Harbor for her 6th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the Caroline / Marshall Islands area.

For daily and attack positions (though incomplete) for USS Seadragon during this patrol see the map below.

11 May 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) topped off with fuel at Johnston Island before proceeding towards her patrol area.

13 Jun 1943 (position 9.30, 167.30)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) claims to have damaged (or sunk) a large Japanese transport vessel off Roi.

(All times are zone L, -11)
1450 hours - In position 09°30'N, 167°30'E sighted masts of a ship zigzagging on base course 220°(T). Commenced approach. The ship was a transport escorted by two trawlers as escorts. One ahead and the other trailing. An aircraft was patrolling overhead.

1526 hours - Fired four bow torpedoes from 1500 yards. After firing the second torpedo a bomb exploded close aboard on the starboard quarter. Two torpedoes hit the target amidships.

1530 hours - The target lay stopped, low in the water with a large list to port. One escort was heading towards our position. Upon swinging the periscope aft picked up what appeared to be a torpedo boat or small destroyer very close and headig right at us. Went deep and rigged for depth charging. A last look at the target showed her stern almost under.

1532 hours - Depth charging started. Two of them were very close. Between 1532 and 1615 hours ten attacks were made in which a total of 28 depth charges were dropped. All were quite close and some minor damage was sustained.

1914 hours - Surfaced.

21 Jun 1943
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) ended her 6th war patrol at Midway. Refit was then commenced by USS Sperry.

3 Jul 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) departed Midway for Pearl Harbour. Repairs had to be undertaken to the steering gear and this was not possible at Midway.

7 Jul 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) arrived at Pearl Harbour.

8 Jul 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) was docked at Pearl Harbour.

11 Jul 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) was undocked.

12 Jul 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) conducted exercises off Pearl Harbour.

13 Jul 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) conducted exercises off Pearl Harbour.

14 Jul 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
During 14/15 July 1943 USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) conducted exercises off Pearl Harbour. These included night exercises.

15 Jul 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) conducted exercises off Pearl Harbour.

18 Jul 1943
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) departed from Pearl Harbor for her 7th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the Marshall Islands area. Seadragon was escorted out by USS PC 588 (Lt. J.R. Hinton Jr., USNR).

For daily and attack positions (though incomplete) for USS Seadragon during this patrol see the map below.

20 Jul 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) topped off with fuel at Johnston Island before proceeding towards her patrol area.

27 Jul 1943 (position 19.20, 166.32)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) claims to have damaged a grounded freighter at Wake Island.

(All times are zone L, -11)
0910 hours - Sighted a ship with her bow on the beach east of the channel to the lagoon.

1110 hours - Decided to fire two torpedoes at this ship, an older (coal burner) transport of 5000 ton.

1136 hours - From position 19°20'N, 166°32'E fired two torpedoes from the bow tubes from 2200 yards. Two hits were obtained but the first torpedo was a dud. When the smoke had cleared the barge that was alongside the ship had disappeared and the ship itself was now down by the stern with water up to the after deckhouse. Two patrol boats and a trawler were now seen to come out of the lagoon to hunt the attacker. Went deep.

1156 hours - Three depth charges were dropped.

1220 hours - Two depth charges were dropped.

1231 hours - Two depth charges were dropped.

1335 hours - Went to periscope depth. Six aircraft were seen patrolling nearby.

1338 hours - Three bombs were dropped. Went deep again. Until 1626 hours Seadragon came to periscope depth seven times and each time she was greeted by a salvo of aircraft bombs.

1912 hours - Surfaced.

31 Jul 1943 (position 17.40, 163.58)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) claims to have damaged a small freighter south-west of Wake Island.

(All times are zone L, -11)
1133 hours - In position 17°30'N, 164°00'E sighted smoke bearing 010°(T). Made out the tops of a ship on a course of 195°(T). Dived.

1203 hours - The ship was seen to be a small freighter of about 3000 ton that was seen at Wake Island two days before. She was accompanied by two escorts and one aircraft.

1249 hours - In position 17°40'N, 163°58'E fired three torpedoes from the after tubes from 2000 yards. One hit aft was obtained. Enemy course was 188°(T), speed 11.5 knots.

1252 hours - The target was obscured by heavy black smoke.

1255 hours - The trailing escort dropped one depth charge.

1256 hours - The target had pulled clear of the smoke but lay stopped. A second depth charge was dropped.

1257 hours - Went deep as one of the escorts was coming towards. Between 1259 and 1316 hours six depth charges were dropped. None were very close.

1320 hours - Suffered an electrical fire in the after torpedo room.

1325 hours - The fire was out.

1335 hours - Returned to periscope depth. The target appeared to be underway but was still smoking heavily. The escorts were heading towards us again so went deep.

1355 hours - Returned to periscope depth. The target was now much further away, still smoking heavily. Had to go deep again due to a patrolling aircraft.

1405 hours - Returned to periscope depth. The target appeared to be stopped at a range of 9000 yards and was still smoking heavily. Again had to go deep due to the escorts.

1608 hours - Returned to periscope depth. Nothing in sight.

4 Aug 1943 (position 7.40, 160.45)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) claims to have either damaged or sunk a Japanese freighter from a convoy south-south-west of Eniwetok.

(All times are zone L, -11)
1525 hours - Sighted smoke bearing 260°(T).

1604 hours - Sighted a plane, range 10 miles. Dived.

1814 hours - Made out the target as a four ship convoy with one torpedo boat as escort. The convoy was in two colums and on a base course of 265°(T). The escort was trailing between the two colums. Three of the ships were transports of about 5000 ton each, the other ship was a passenger-freighter of about 6000 ton.

1920 hours - In position 07°40'N, 160°45'E fired two torpedoes from the after tubes at the leading transport in the starboard column from a range of 1900 yards. One hit was obtained. The explosion was not very loud. A big column of smoke was seen to come out of the targets forward hatch. The target stopped.

1926 hours - Went deep as the torpedo boat acted like he had detected us.

1928 hours - Depth charging started. Until 1937 hours a total of eight depth charges were dropped. All were deep and rather close.

2031 hours - Started to come up to periscope depth but the escort was still patrolling overhead.

2050 hours - Went deep again as sound reported the escort coming closer.

2158 hours - Surfaced and commenced radar search of the area.

2330 hours - Unable to pick up anything. Took up base course of te convoy and went ahead on all four engines. Early the next moring two transports were sighted but Seadragon as not able to attack.

7 Aug 1943 (position 8.49, 167.23)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) claims to have sunk two 5000 ton freighters off Kwajalein.

(All times are zone L, -11)
6 August 1943
0822 hours - Sighted masts of convoy bearing 250°(T).

1122 hours - The convoy passed to the south of Seadragon. Minimum range was 6500 yards. The ships were in the same formation as yesterday and an aircraft was patrolling ahead. Decided to trail instead of getting ahead due to this aircraft for a night attack.

1250 hours - Surfaced.

1514 hours - Dived as the aircraft came closer, although he was too low or too far away for the radar to pick her up.

1546 hours - Surfaced, continued trailing the convoy.

1805 hours - The aircraft left the convoy. Went to full speed ahead.

2120 hours - Radar contact bearing 320°(T), range 16000 yards. Decided to attack from the convoy's starboard bow.

2241 hours - Seadragon was sighted by the enemy due to lightning. One of the escorts came towards. Changed course to the south to open up the range. The convoy inreased speed from 9 to 12 knots and scattered. After the range had increased from 7000 to 10000 yards came around to take up a position on the starboard quarter of the nearest ship and wait until the convoy had settled down.

2304 hours - The convoy appeared to have settled down. Speed had been reduced again to 9 knots and the ships had regained their previous positions. Commenced approach on the last ship on the starboard flank.

2324 hours - On reaching a range of 6000 yard another flash of lightning lit up the scene and again Seadragon was sighted. One of the escorts again came towards. Reversed course and opened range. Decided to attack from the port flank although this side would gie Seadragon a lighter background.

7 August 1943
0014 hours - While crossing astern of the convoy, radar made a contact, range 2500 yards ahead. Reversed course and went to full speed ahead. Radar kept this target for about a minute and a half before it disappeared. Nothing was sighted from the bridge.

0025 hours - Came around to make another try at the port flank of the convoy.

0159 hours - In position 08°49'N, 167°23'E fired four torpedoes from the forward tubes from 2600 yards at overlapping targets. Three hits were obtained on the ships beyond the intended target.

0204 hours - The escorts started dropping depth charges, numerous explosions were heard until 0221 hours.

0205 hours - Came around astern of the convoy and opened the range to 8000 yards to see what was going on.

0219 hours - One of the pips on the radar slowly disappeared. Shortly after it disappeared sound reported an explosion.

0221 hours - The pip from the other transport also disappeared again followed by an explosion.

0224 hours - The only pips left on the screen were the small ones from the escorts at a range of 9500 yards. Range finally faded out at 11000 yards.

0507 hours - Dived.

28 Aug 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) made a short stop at Johnston Island to take on board some fuel before proceeding towards Pearl Harbour.

30 Aug 1943
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) ended her 7th war patrol at Pearl Harbor where she was refitted by USS Holland.

18 Sep 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) conducted exercises off Pearl Harbour.

19 Sep 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) conducted exercises off Pearl Harbour.

24 Sep 1943
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) departed from Pearl Harbor for her 8th war patrol. Once again she was ordered to patrol in the Marshall Islands area. She was escorted out by USS PC 587 (Lt. R.E. Trumble, Jr., USNR).

For daily and attack positions (though incomplete) for USS Seadragon during this patrol see the map below.

26 Sep 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) topped off with fuel at Johnston Island before proceeding towards her patrol area.

13 Oct 1943 (position 8.45, 167.08)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) claims to have sunk a Japanese cargo-passenger vessel of Kwajalein.

(All times are zone L, -11)
11 October 1943
2151 hours - Sighted smoke bearing 280°(T). Changed course to gain a position ahead. Decided to go for a dawn attack as light conditions were not satisfactory for a night approach.

12 October 1943
0444 hours - Radar had not picked up the target but the target was fairly visible through glasses, dived believing the target was at least 13000 yards away.

0518 hours - Picked up the target through the periscope. She had already passed us, range was now about 3500 yards. Sound had not picked her up. Range on diving must have ben only about 8000 yards instead of the estimated 13000 yards.

0530 hours - As light conditions improved identified the target as a cargo-passenger ship of about 8000 ton, with a large trawler as escort. The target appeared to be on a base course of 090°(T), speed was estimated as 8 knots.

0709 hours - Surfaced.

1247 hours - Obtained a position dead ahead of the target on her estimated base course. Range was 16000 yards. Dived.

1305 hours - Had a first good look at the target. Commenced approach.

1455 hours - Discontinued the attack as the range could not be closed further then 3800 yards. He must have changed it's base course just as we dived.

1631 hours - Surfaced and commenced chasing the target. Intended to make a moonlight radar approach around 2300 hours.

2015 hours - Lost contact with the target.

2100 hours - Unable to regain contact. Believed the target had changed course to the north. Changed course accordingly.

13 October 1943
0304 hours - Sighted our target bearing 160°(T). Went ahead full on all four engines to get ahead before daybreak.

0448 hours - The target and escort reversed course, probably they had sighted us. Our SJ radar was not functioning properly, range was about 7000 yards and it did not pick up the target.

0500 hours - Dived as it was getting light and we were only 15 miles from Kwajalein.

0525 hours - The target and escort had reversed course again and were coming towards. Commenced approach.

0557 hours - In position 08°45'N, 167°08'E fired four stern torpedoes from 2200 yards. Two torpedo hits were heard about two minutes after firing.

0600 hours - The targets screws stopped.

0602 hours - The target was dead in the water, broadside to us.

0604 hours - Went deep as the escort was seen to come towards.

0606 hours - Heard a heavy explosion in the direction of the target.

0618 hours - Three depth charges were dropped.

0630 hours - Started to come up to periscope depth. Another depth charge or an aerial bomb was dropped.

0645 hours - At periscope depth. Only the escort was sighted lying-to where the target was last sighted. Two floatplanes were circling overhead. Considered the target sunk.

31 Oct 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) departed her patrol area to return to Pearl Harbour.

5 Nov 1943
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) ended her 8th war patrol at Pearl Harbor where she was refitted by USS Holland.

14 Dec 1943
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) departed from Pearl Harbor for her 9th war patrol. She was ordered to patrol in the Caroline Islands area. She was escorted out by USS SC 1055 (Lt.(jg) R.A. Wilks, USNR).

For daily and attack positions (though incomplete) for USS Seadragon during this patrol see the map below.

16 Dec 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) topped off with fuel at Johnston Island before proceeding towards her patrol area.

9 Jan 1944
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) attacked a Japanese convoy north-west of Truk and claims the possible sinking of a transport ship.

(All times are zone K, -10)
8 January 1944
1852 hours - In position 09°30'N, 149°33'E obtained SJ radar contact bearing 345°(T), range 19000 yards.

1855 hours - Went ahead on three engines, charging on the fourth. Commenced tracking. The contact developed into three large pips and two smaller ones.

2302 hours - Obtained a position ahead at a range of 11000 yards. There were three large ships in line ahead and two small escorts, one on each flank.

2310 hours - The convoy changed course radically to the west.

9 January 1944
0149 hours - Again obtained a position ahead, now at a range of 8000 yards. Dived and started an approach from radar depth.

0218 hours - In position 10°20'N, 149°28'E fired four torpedoes from the bow tubes at the right flank ship, a transport. This ship was the largest of the three ships. Range was 1700 yards. Three torpedo explosions were heard after about one and a minute.

0221 hours - Took a look at the target which was completely obscured by a large cloud of black smoke rising about 200 feet into the air.

0222 hours - Three depth charges were dropped.

0223 hours - Two more depth charges were dropped, they were close. Took a look at the nearest escort, which was very close with zero angle on the bow. Went deep.

0226 hours - Heard a heavy explosion which shook the submarine.

0227 hours - Heard the screws of the second escort which joined the other escort in the hunt. Between 0228 and 0235 hours nine more depth charges were dropped but they were not close.

0330 hours - Surfaced and headed back to the scene of the attack. Then set off to the westward to try to regain contact with the rest of the convoy. Seadragon was albe to regain contact but could not make another attack before the convoy reached Truk.

20 Jan 1944 (position 8.04, 152.52)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) torpedoed and damaged the Japanese ammunition ship Irako (9750 GRT, built 1941) north-west of Truk in position 08°04'N, 152°52'E.

Irako was escorted by the destroyers Satsuki, Akebono and Ushio. After she was torpedoed destroyer Suzukaze also joined. The next day heavy cruiser Chokai also came from Truk and towed the damaged ship back to Truk for repairs.

(All times are zone K, -10)
1034 hours - In position 08°04'N, 152°57'E sighted masts of ships bearing 105°(T). Commenced approach. The contact developed into three large transports with four destroyers as escorts, two on each flank. All ships were in a very tight formation. Started attack on the largest transport whih was on the right flank. Three floatplanes were also patrolling overhead.

1123 hours - In position 08°04'N, 152°52'E fired four torpedoes from the stern tubes from a rane of 800 yards. Saw and heard two hits on the after part of the target.

1125 hours - Heard a third torpedo hit, possibly on the ship beyond the target. Seadragon meanwhile was going deep.

1127 hours - Two depth charges exploded close aboard when Seadragon was passing 100 feet. Between 1127 and 1211 hours three of the destroyers were hunting above. The dropped a total of 52 depth charges of which quite a few were too close for comfort and Seadragon was shaken up considerably.

1300 hours - Went ot periscope depth but immediately saw an aircraft circling our position so immediately went deep again.

1328 hours - Returned to periscope depth. Nothing in sight.

24 Jan 1944 (position 0.00, 0.00)
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) departed her patrol area to return to Pearl Harbour.

5 Feb 1944
USS Seadragon (Cdr. R.L. Rutter, USN) ended her 9th war patrol at Pearl Harbor. She was ordered to the Pearl Harbour Navy Yard for an overhaul and short refit in which her conning tower was rebuilt. Also a 4" gun replaced the 3" gun.


Submarine USS Kete (369)


15 Oct 1944
With her trials and initial training completed USS Kete (Cmdr Royal Lawrence Rutter) arrived at Pearl Harbor.

31 Oct 1944
USS Kete (Cmdr Royal Lawrence Rutter) departed from Pearl Harbor for her 1st war patrol, and was ordered to patrol in the East China Sea.

4 Nov 1944
USS Kete (Cmdr Royal Lawrence Rutter) refuels at Midway.

24 Nov 1944
USS Kete (Cmdr Royal Lawrence Rutter) arrived at Saipan to repair her malfunctioning bow planes.

24 Dec 1944
With the repairs completed USS Kete (Cdr. R.L. Rutter) departed from Saipan to resume her 1st war patrol.

30 Jan 1945
USS Kete (Cdr. R.L. Rutter) ended her 1st war patrol at Guam.


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