Hiroaki Abe file photo [7193]

Hiroaki Abe

SurnameAbe
Given NameHiroaki
Born15 Mar 1889
Died6 Feb 1949
CountryJapan
CategoryMilitary-Sea
GenderMale

Contributor:

ww2dbaseHiroaki Abe was born in the city of Yonezawa, Yamagata Prefecture, Japan. He graduated from the 39th class of the Imperial Naval Academy in Jul 1911. As a midshipman, he served aboard the cruiser Soya and battleship Mikasa. He was promoted to the rank of ensign on 1 Dec 1912 and was later assigned to cruisers Nisshin, Chikuma, and then battleship Kongo in 1914. After attending torpedo school and naval artillery school, he was promoted to the rank of sub-lieutenant on 11 Dec 1914 and was assigned to destroyer Akebono. During WW1, he served aboard cruiser Chitose, though did not see any combat. Between 10 May 1923 and 1 May 1924, he served as the chief torpedo officer of light cruiser Tama. Between 1 Dec 1919 and 10 Nov 1921, he served as a staff officer with the 3rd Fleet. On 20 Jul 1922, he was given his first command, destroyer Ushio. Later that year, he was transferred to command the destroyer Hatsuyuki. On 1 Dec 1923, he was promoted to the rank of lieutenant commander. In 1925, he was assigned as the captain of destroyer Kaki. In 1926, he studied at the Naval War College. On 10 Dec 1928, he was promoted to the rank of commander. Between 30 Nov 1929 and 31 Oct 1931, he was a staff officer of Destroyer Squadron 2. Between 31 Oct 1931 and 16 May 1932, he was the commanding officer of Destroyer Division 1, then he served in the same role with Destroyer Division 2 from 15 Nov 1932 to 15 Nov 1933 and Destroyer Division 23 until 15 Nov 1934. He was promoted to the rank of captain on 1 Dec 1932. On 1 Dec 1936, he took command of cruiser Jintsu, remaining its captain until 1 Dec 1937. Between 1 Dec 1937 and 1 Apr 1938, he was the captain of the battleship Fuso. Between 15 Nov 1940 and 21 Jul 1941, at the rank of rear admiral, he was the commanding officer of Destroyer Squadron 6. On 1 Aug 1941, he became the commanding officer of Cruiser Division 8, and he led that force during the Pearl Harbor and Wake Island attacks in the opening chapters of the Pacific War; he held that position until 14 Jul 1942. During the Solomon Islands campaign, as the commander of Battleship Division 11, he participated in the Battle of the Eastern Solomons and the Battle of Santa Cruz in 1942. On 1 Nov 1942, he was promoted to the rank of vice admiral.

ww2dbaseIn Nov 1942, Abe's force was engaged in the First Naval Battle of Guadalcanal. Although his force was taken by surprise as they were not expecting the presence of an American force, it was able to quickly locate cruiser Atlanta, disabling it in the water while killing Rear Admiral Norman Scott. His flagship Hiei then proceeded to score ten 14-inch shells on destroyer Cushing and several hits on destroyer Laffey. Despite the success in the opening moments of the battle, Abe could only see the confusion aboard Hiei, which had been receiving much of the American fire because of the damage she had dished out so far. With the American ships sailing into the heart of his formation, he ordered a change of course to break things apart. Hiei turned north away from battle, and Kirishima and other ships followed suit. American cruiser San Francisco chased after the fleeing Hiei, but was treated with salvos of high explosive shells that killed Rear Admiral Daniel Callahan. San Francisco was soon joined by other cruisers, which all took varying degrees of damage from Abe's ships. After daylight broke, Hiei was found by American aircraft and was sunk stern first five miles off Savo Island. After analysis, Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto concluded that Abe's lack of aggressiveness turned an initially successful battle into the loss of flagship Hiei, and relieved Abe of his command on 20 Dec 1942. Abe was forced to resign from the Japanese Navy in Mar 1943.

ww2dbaseSources: Struggle for Guadalcanal, Wikipedia.

Hiroaki Abe Timeline

15 Mar 1889 Hiroaki Abe was born in Yonezawa, Yamagata Prefecture, Japan.
18 Jul 1911 Hiroaki Abe was promoted to the rank of midshipman.
1 Dec 1912 Hiroaki Abe was promoted to the rank of ensign.
27 May 1914 Hiroaki Abe was assigned to battlecruiser Kongo.
11 Dec 1914 Hiroaki Abe was promoted to the rank of sub-lieutenant and was transferred out of battlecruiser Kongo.
1 Dec 1917 Hiroaki Abe was promoted to the rank of lieutenant.
1 Dec 1919 Hiroaki Abe became a staff officer with Japanese Navy 3rd Fleet.
10 Nov 1921 Hiroaki Abe was transferred out of Japanese Navy 3rd Fleet.
20 Jul 1922 Hiroaki Abe became the commanding officer of destroyer Ushio.
10 May 1923 Hiroaki Abe became the chief torpedo officer of cruiser Tama.
1 Dec 1923 Hiroaki Abe was promoted to the rank of lieutenant commander.
1 May 1924 Hiroaki Abe was transferred out of cruiser Tama.
10 Dec 1928 Hiroaki Abe was promoted to the rank of commander.
30 Nov 1929 Hiroaki Abe became a staff officer with Japanese Navy Destroyer Squadron 2.
31 Oct 1931 Hiroaki Abe became the commanding officer of Japanese Navy Destroyer Division 1.
16 May 1932 Hiroaki Abe was transferred out of Japanese Navy Destroyer Division 1.
15 Nov 1932 Hiroaki Abe became the commanding officer of Japanese Navy Destroyer Division 2.
1 Dec 1932 Hiroaki Abe was promoted to the rank of captain.
15 Nov 1933 Hiroaki Abe became the commanding officer of Japanese Navy Destroyer Division 23.
15 Nov 1934 Hiroaki Abe was transferred out of Japanese Navy Destroyer Division 23.
1 Dec 1936 Hiroaki Abe became the commanding officer of cruiser Jintsu.
1 Dec 1937 Hiroaki Abe became the commanding officer of battleship Fuso.
1 Apr 1938 Hiroaki Abe was transferred out of battleship Fuso.
15 Nov 1938 Hiroaki Abe was promoted to the rank of rear admiral.
15 Nov 1940 Hiroaki Abe became the commanding officer of Japanese Navy Destroyer Squadron 6.
21 Jul 1941 Hiroaki Abe was transferred out of Japanese Navy Destroyer Squadron 6.
1 Aug 1941 Hiroaki Abe became the commanding officer of Japanese Navy Cruiser Division 8.
14 Jul 1942 Hiroaki Abe became the commanding officer of Japanese Navy Battleship Division 11.
1 Nov 1942 Hiroaki Abe was promoted to the rank of vice admiral.
20 Dec 1942 Hiroaki Abe was relieved of his command of Japanese Navy Battleship Division 11 for his lack of aggressiveness during the First Naval Battle of Guadalcanal. He would be forced to retire within months.
6 Feb 1949 Hiroaki Abe passed away.




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More on Hiroaki Abe
Event(s) Participated:
» Attack on Pearl Harbor
» Battle of Wake Island
» Guadalcanal Campaign
» Solomon Islands Campaign

Ship(s) Served:
» Fuso
» Hiei
» Jintsu
» Kongo
» Tama



Famous WW2 Quote
"With Germany arming at breakneck speed, England lost in a pacifist dream, France corrupt and torn by dissension, America remote and indifferent... do you not tremble for your children?"

Winston Churchill, 1935