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USS Indianapolis Found

Somewhere in the Pacific Ocean 72 years ago, a Japanese torpedo tore through the hull of the USS Indianapolis. The ship sank 18,000 feet to the bottom of the sea, and wasn't seen again -until Friday.

The Indianapolis sank in 12 minutes, making it impossible for it to send a distress signal or deploy life-saving equipment. Before the attack, on July 30, 1945, it had just completed a secret mission delivering components of the atomic bomb used in Hiroshima that brought an end to the war in the Pacific, according to the Naval History and Heritage Command in Washington.

Most of the ship's 1,196 sailors and Marines survived the sinking only to succumb to exposure, dehydration, drowning and shark attacks. Only 316 survived, according to the US Navy. Of the survivors, 22 are alive today.

You might remember the story as it was told in the movie Jaws. A civilian expedition led by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen spotted the wreckage of the ship using hi-tech equipment capable of diving miles underwater. Read the story of the Indianapolis at CNN. -via Metafilter


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