The USS Reuben James

On October 31st, 1941, the USS Reuben James was escorting an eastbound convoy from Halifax, Nova Scotia and was sunk by a torpedo from a German Type IX U Boat U-552 off the coast of Iceland. Although the German declaration of war and the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor were still more than a month away, she was the first American ship sunk by enemy fire during World War II. The Reuben James was part of the “Undeclared War” fought against the German Navy while protecting convoys supplying Lend Lease material to Great Britain in 1941.

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