Ships hit by U-boats

Atlantic Sun

American Motor tanker

Photo courtesy of Sun Refining & Marketing Co

NameAtlantic Sun
Type:Motor tanker
Tonnage11,355 tons
Completed1941 - Sun Shipbuilding & Dry Dock Co, Chester PA 
OwnerSun Oil Company, Philadelphia PA 
Date of attack15 Feb 1943Nationality:      American
FateSunk by U-607 (Ernst Mengersen)
Position51° 00'N, 41° 00'W - Grid BC 5163
Complement67 (66 dead and 1 survivor).
ConvoyON-165 (straggler)
RouteReykjavik (8 Feb) - New York 
CargoWater ballast 
History Completed in March 1941

On 16 Mar 1942, the Atlantic Sun (Master Robert Linwood Montague) departed Beaumont, Texas, en route to Marcus Hook, Pennsylvania with a load of 156.840 barrels of crude oil. On 21 March, the unescorted tanker was spotted by U-124 (Mohr) off the Beaufort Sea Buoy in 33°34N/77°25W but could not get into a favorable firing position because of the tanker´s speed of 15 knots. As a last resort, Mohr fired a torpedo at about 4000 yards at 10.05 hours. This torpedo struck on the starboard side in the forward tank but did not severely damage the ship. The Atlantic Sun reached Beaufort, North Carolina under own power to recieve temporary repairs. None of the crew of eight officers, 32 men and five armed guards (she was armed with one 5in and four .30cal guns) reported any injuries. 
Notes on event

The Atlantic Sun (Master William B. Longtin) had developed engine trouble and straggled from convoy ON-165. At 10.00 hours on 15 February 1943 the tanker tried to catch up with convoy when struck by two torpedoes from U-607 on the port side about 150 miles off Cape Race. The first torpedo split the ship in half abaft the midships house and the other blew a large hole in the bow. The forward section sank in 20 minutes. The after section appeared sound enough to be taken into port under power. After the ship broke in two, 22 men led by the chief officer abandoned the after section. They returned two hours later and re-boarded the after part of the ship, going below to change clothing. 30 minutes later, with the men still below, a third torpedo from U-607 struck near the stern post, causing the stern to sink 30 minutes later.

After the hit a lifeboat with eight men cleared the ship half-swamped and without oars. Others went over the side into the sea just before the ship turned over keel up and sank. The ordinary seaman William Golobich was taken prisoner by the U-boat, landed at St. Nazaire on 9 March and eventually taken to the POW camp Marlag und Milag Nord. Those who remained behind faced moderate seas and 25° weather. None of the ten officers, 36 crewmen, 20 armed guards (the tanker was armed with one 5in, one 3in and eight 20mm guns) and one passenger on board survived, except the man who had been taken prisoner.

On boardWe have details of 69 people who were on board

Attack entries for Atlantic Sun

DateU-boatCommanderLoss typeTonsNat.
21 Mar 1942U-124Kptlt. Johann MohrDamaged11,355  
15 Feb 1943U-607Kptlt. Ernst MengersenSunk11,355  

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