Sunk by Runaway Torpedo
On her fifth, and final patrol, Tang fired 24 torpedoes in four attacks. 22 were hits, sinking 13 ships, and one was a miss. Her final torpedo malfunctioned and hit the boat, sinking her. The details of her loss were provided by her Commanding Officer, who survived to be rescued from a Japanese prisoner of war camp. During a night surface attack, two torpedoes were fired at a freighter. The first ran hot, straight and normal, but the second broached and began to circle. Despite emergency maneuvers, it hit Tang in the vicinity of the After Torpedo Room. The after three compartments flooded and she went down by the stern. Nine officers and men on the bridge, and one in the conning tower, managed to escape but only three survived to be picked up eight hours later. With the submarine on the bottom at 180 feet, 13 men managed to get through the forward escape trunk but only eight reached the surface alive. Of these, only five survived to be picked up by the Japanese.