Allied Warships

Lagarto (SS-371)

Submarine of the Balao class

USS Lagarto as completed.

NavyThe US Navy
Built byManitowoc Shipbuilding Co. (Manitowoc, Wisconsin, U.S.A.) 
Ordered6 Jun 1942 
Laid down12 Jan 1944 
Launched28 May 1944 
Commissioned14 Oct 1944 
Lost3 May 1945 
Loss position7° 55'N, 102° 00'E

USS Lagarto (Cmdr Frank Devere Latta) is most likely sunk by the Japanese minelayer Hatsutaka (offsite link) in the Gulf of Siam in position 07º55'N, 102º00'E. All hands lost.

See also this website (offsite link).


Commands listed for USS Lagarto (371)

Please note that we're still working on this section
and that we only list Commanding Officers for the duration of the Second World War.

1T/Cdr. Frank Devere Latta, USN14 Oct 19443 May 1945 (+)

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Notable events involving Lagarto include:

12 Nov 1944
USS Lagarto (Cdr. F.D. Latta, USN) departed New Orleans, Louisiana for the Panama Canal Zone.

17 Nov 1944
USS Lagarto (Cdr. F.D. Latta, USN) arrived in the Panama Canal Zone from New Orleans, Louisiana.

9 Dec 1944
After a training period, USS Lagarto (Cdr. F.D. Latta, USN), departed the Panama Canal Zone for Pearl Harbour.

7 Feb 1945
USS Lagarto (Cmdr Frank Devere Latta) departed from Pearl Harbor for her 1st war patrol, and was ordered to patrol off the Ryukyu Islands.

24 Feb 1945
USS Lagarto (Cdr. F.D. Latta), most likely, torpedoed and sank the Japanese submarine I-371 (offsite link). Lagarto also sank the Japanese merchant cargo ship Tatsumomo Maru (880 GRT) of the Bungo Suido, Kyushu, Japan in position 32°40'N, 132°33'E.

20 Mar 1945
USS Lagarto (Cdr. F.D. Latta) ended her 1st war patrol at Subic Bay, Philippines.

12 Apr 1945
USS Lagarto (Cmdr Frank Devere Latta) departed from Subic Bay for her 2nd war patrol, and is initially ordered to patrol in the South China Sea. In late April she is reassigned to patrol in the Gulf of Siam.

Apr 2005
In late April 2005 a wreck what is thought to be the Lagarto was found by British wreck divers Jamie Macleod and Stewart Oehl in 230 feet of water in the Gulf of Thailand. It was located by comparing its last known position with stories from fishermen who told of snagging fishing nets in that vicinity. Using war records and then sonar, divers found a bump on the bottom of the ocean. They went down and found the submarine still intact and sitting upright, everything still on it. Massive damage had been done to her portside bow area. The outer plating was destroyed and a hole blown inward into the forward battery room and normal fuel oil tank number one. This is presumed to have been the result of depth charging which sunk the Lagarto. (1)

Jun 2006
In mid June 2006, the United States Navy dived a wreck of what is thought to be Lagarto. See this news item for more info.

Media links

The Last Patrol

Holmes, Harry

U. S. Submarines in World War II

Kimmett, Larry and Regis, Margaret

U.S. Submarines Through 1945

Friedman, Norman
(£ 56.95)


  1. Personal communication

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