World’s deepest shipwreck discovered around 23,000 feet under sea

The remains of the USS Samuel B Roberts, a US navy destroyer escort sunk during World War II, were found by explorers below the Pacific Ocean, split in half and lodged on a slope.

Also known as the Sammy B, the world’s deepest shipwreck was located on June 22 by Texan financer Victor Vescovo, an explorer who has previously completed expeditions to the world’s deepest points.

It lies at a depth of 6,895 meters (22,621 feet) in the Philippine Sea. It was out of sight for nearly 80 years, until now.

 The previous deepest wreck that was ever identified and discovered was the USS Johnston, found last year by Vescovo. It lies at 6,469 meters.

Samuel B. Roberts was a John C. Butler-class destroyer escort that was commissioned on April 28, 1944. It went down during the Battle of Samar in the Philippine Sea in October 1944.

The vessel is remembered for its heroic battle against three Japanese battleships, including the Yamato, said to be the largest ever constructed.

The US ship carried 224 crewmembers, 89 of whom were killed. Captain Robert W. Copeland was one of the survivors.


The ship “fought ferociously even though she was completely outclassed by the Japanese battleships and heavy cruisers she went up against,” Vescovo told CNN.

“The heroism of her captain and crew is legendary in the Navy, and it was a great honor to find her final resting place. I think it helps bring closure to the story of the ship, for the families of those who were lost and those who served on her. I think that having a ship vanish into the depths, never to be seen again, can leave those affiliated with the ship feeling a sense of emptiness.”

“Finding the wrecks can help bring closure, and also bring details about the battle that perhaps we didn’t know before. As we say, ‘Steel doesn’t lie.'”

The explorers also went lower to over 7,000 meters to look for one other vessel —a carrier, called Gambier Bay —but couldn’t find it. They didn’t look for the other destroyer, USS Hoel, due to lack of data, reports CNN.

(With inputs from agencies)


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