Ghost Ship Missing Since 1946 Discovered Off Oahu

Researchers from the University of Hawaii and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced on Friday the discovery of the USS Kailua, a ship that went missing off the coast of Oahu in 1946.

According to KITV, the ship was found on the seabed last year sitting upright in 2,000 feet of water, 20 miles off the coast of Oahu, with its solitary mast still standing and ship wheel still in place.

Formerly known as the Dickenson, the USS Kailua was sunk as a target by submarine torpedo fire, and its final resting place had remained a mystery.

“Seeing the ship come into view, we were all amazed at its level of preservation – and by the fact that everything was more or less in place,” said Dr. James Delgado, director of NOAA’s Maritime Heritage Program. “The identification of the wreck was easy, not only because of its unique form, but also because the Navy’s identification number of IX-71 was still painted on the bow.”

The USS Kailua wreck is considered an historic site and the researchers plan to nominate it to the National Register of Historic Places.