Kin Shin'yō Monument
Kin Town, Okinawa Prefecture
This small monument erected in 1971 honors the 74 men of the 22nd Shin'yō
Special Attack Squadron who died in battle. It stands in front of the Public
Hall in Kin Town a short distance from Kin Bay. Shin'yō, which means "ocean
shaker," were two-man Navy motorboats with 250-kg explosive charges
that were deployed in special attack (suicide) operations.
The front of the monument has five large kanji (Chinese characters)
meaning "Kin Monument for Repose of Souls," which can be shortened to "Kin
Monument." The characters were written by Sōgen Asahina, Chief Priest at
Enkakuji Temple in Kamakura at the time of the monument's erection, and his name
is shown below the five large kanji. The backside of the monument has the
following words engraved, "August 1971, praying for peace, the Kin Association
(22nd Shin'yō Special Attack Squadron Toyohiro Unit) erects this."
In back of the monument to the right, there is black plaque put up in 2003 with the
This monument for repose of souls honors the spirits of the 74 members of
the 22nd Shin'yō Special Attack Squadron (Toyohiro Unit) stationed at Kin who
died in battle.
On January 26, 1945, the main part of this special attack squadron was
stationed at Koa Meeting Hall (now Kin Public Hall). Each day intense attack
training took place at the beach before the hall (now Blue Beach), which
served as a launch base to the front line.
At the end of March 1945, as American ships approached Okinawa, the
squadron several times mounted attacks against American ships near Okinawa
and caused considerable damage. After the American Army's landing, the
squadron switched to land battles and carried out night attacks while
entrenched in the mountains of the northern part of the island. However,
without weapons to fight, without food, many of our comrades eventually took
their own precious lives.
This monument was erected through the efforts of Squadron Commander
Toyohiro and other survivors.
Kin Town Association for Bereaved Families of War Dead
At the end of October 1944, the 22nd Shin'yō Special Attack Squadron was
formed at Kawatana Torpedo Boat Training School in Nagasaki Prefecture. On March 14, 1945, a B-24 Liberator heavy bomber made a surprise
attack while the squadron was training at Kin Bay.
The attack killed 18 men and destroyed 10 shin'yō motorboats .
After this, the squadron made a total of three sorties . Although
Tokkōtai Senbotsusha (1990, 250-1) lists the names of the 74 members of the 22nd
Shin'yō Special Attack Squadron who were killed in special (suicide) attacks, the
listing does not provide the dates of their deaths. About 30 former squadron
members attended the unveiling of the Kin Shin'yō Monument .
1. Tokkōtai Senbotsusha 1990, 109
2. Tokkōai Senbotsusha 1990, 373
3. Kimata (1998, 271) provides this information
regarding the unveiling ceremony, but this source indicates that Kin Shin'yō Monument
was erected in 1969 rather than 1971, the year shown on the back side of the
Kimata, Jirō. 1998. Nihon tokkōtei senshi (History of
Japan's special attack boats). Tōkyō: Kōjinsha.
Tokkōtai Senbotsusha Irei
Heiwa Kinen Kyōkai (Tokkōtai Commemoration Peace Memorial Association). 1990.
Tokubetsu Kōgekitai (Special Attack Corps). Tōkyō: Tokkōtai Senbotsusha
Irei Heiwa Kinen Kyōkai.