Ōdōtsu 117th Shinyō Special Attack Squadron Monument
Nichinan City, Miyazaki Prefecture
In the last year of World War II, the Japanese Navy deployed many shinyō
explosive motorboat squadrons along the western coasts of Kyūshū and Shikoku in order to
defend against an anticipated Allied invasion.
This monument erected in 1987 remembers the
shinyō squadron deployed to Ōdōtsu along the coast of Miyazaki Prefecture. The
top half of the monument has the inscription of "Prayer of Peace," and the
bottom half has the following inscription:
Site of Former Navy 117th Shinyō Special Attack Squadron Base
In April 1945 at the end of the Pacific War, the 117th Shinyō Special Attack
Squadron Base was established here at Ōdōtsu. Fifty young crewmen from ages
sixteen to nineteen, members of the 19th [Otsu] Yokaren (Navy's Preparatory Flight
Training Program) Class at Mie Air Base and third-year graduates, worked day and
night with intensive training.
The shinyō special attack boat was a motorboat
made of veneer with a length of 5 meters and width of 1.2 meters. It was a
special attack weapon that would crash into an enemy ship with 250 kilograms of
explosives loaded in the front, and the crewmen themselves would also
explode and die in the attack.
With the passage of 42 years since that time,
Japan has achieved phenomenal economic growth and has flourished as a democratic
country filled with freedom and peace.
Japan will never again start such a
terrible war. This monument looks back on those times, honors the spirits of our
many friends who died in battle, and offers a sincere prayer for eternal peace.
The 117th Shinyō Special Attack Squadron was formed
on March 20, 1945, and had 26 two-man Model 5 shinyō motorboats. The squadron had 188 total members, which included 7
officers, 50 shinyō boat crewmen, 38 maintenance workers, 21 headquarters
personnel, and 72 base workers.
The historical information on this web page about the 117th Shinyō Special
Attack Squadron is from pages 174-5 (written by former 117th Shinyō
Squadron Commander Kobayashi) of the following book:
Shinyō Association (Shinyōkai), ed. 1990. Ningen heiki:
Shinyō tokubetsu kōgekitai (Human weapon: Shinyō Special Attack
Corps). Shiro Arai, general editor. Volume 2 of 2. Tōkyō: Kokushokankōkai.
View of Ōdōtsu Bay next to monument