U-boat patrols

Patrol info for U-552

DepartureArrival / FateDuration
25 Oct 1941St. Nazaire26 Nov 1941St. Nazaire33 days


Officers *

Kptlt. Erich Topp

Oblt. Ulrich Graf von Soden-Fraunhofen

Oblt. Siegfried Koitschka
Cdr training

Kptlt. Josef Röther

Franz Säck

Werner Klug
WO sea training

Walter Kimmelmann

Patrol description

The translated war diary of U-552 for this patrol is available on our partner website: uboatarchive.net

Daily positions, sinkings and allied attacks during the patrol of U-552

We have daily positions for all 33 days on this patrol.

Wolfpack operations during this patrol

U-552 operated with the following Wolfpacks during this patrol
   Stosstrupp (30 Oct 1941 - 4 Nov 1941)
   Störtebecker (15 Nov 1941 - 19 Nov 1941)
   Benecke (19 Nov 1941 - 22 Nov 1941)

Ships hit by U-552 during this patrol

Date U-boat Commander Name of ship Tons Nat. ConvoyMap
31 Oct 1941U-552Erich Topp USS Reuben James (DD 245)1,190amHX-156A

1 ship sunk (1,190 tons).

We have a picture of this vessel.

General Events during this patrol


31 Oct 1941. The first US Navy ship lost in the Atlantic On 31 October 1941 U-552 was hunting the eastbound convoy HX 156, and at roughly 0525 hrs torpedoed one of the escorts. The ship's magazine exploded and the ship sank rapidly, with 100 from the crew of 144 going down with her. She was the destroyer USS Reuben James, and was the first US Navy ship lost in hostile action in WWII. This occurred nearly six weeks before war was declared between Germany and the United States, although US Navy ships had been escorting convoys and attacking U-boats for months before that.

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Attacks on U-552 during this patrol

We have no recorded attacks on U-552 duing this patrol.

If you believe we have omitted an attack on U-552 please let us know.

See all patrols for U-552

* These are officers that later became commanders themselves.

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