One of a large group of inter-war period submarines, SS-131, S-26 entered service in 1923. When World War II began, S-26 was stationed at New London, but was sent to Panama shortly after Pearl Harbor.

She was lost in January 1942, on her second patrol, in a collision with an American subchaser that had escorted S-26 and three other S-boats to their patrol area. The captain, LCDR Earl C. Hawk, and two others who were on the bridge at the time of the collision, were the only survivors.

One of the three survivors, LT Robert Ward, the executive officer, later went on to command the U.S.S. Sailfish (ex. Squalus).

Crew List at Time of Loss

U.S.S. S-26 (SS-131) was lost on 24 January 1942, in the Gulf of Panama, about 14 miles west of San Jose Light in 300 feet of water, following a collision with an escort, U.S.S. PC-460. Three members of the bridge party were the only survivors. Three other crew members, who were not aboard, also survived. These were S2 Phillip W. Doerfer, S1 Joe B. Hurst, and S1 William Jeavons, all of whom were in the hospital at the time of the collision.

Adams, Leonard W., MM1
Amick, Leroy A, S2
Anderson, Glen W., EM2
Barankick, George, F2
Bauer, Clinton A., MM1
Baumbach, Alvin C., S2
Biebuyck, William P., S1
Brown, Harry A., Y1
Burchart, Edwin B, MM1
Burroughs, George O., F2
Claflin, Carl R, F2
Clark, Carl C., MM2
Clough, Richard K, MM2
Crabtree, Eugene O., S1
Crumbley, Byron, CMM
Dawson, James D., RM3
Ehrle, Elwood, GM3
Evans, David B., CMM
Freeman, Ray A., MM2
Gamble, Robert F., MM2
Gill, Joseph M., CTM
Hawk, Earle C., LCDR (Commanding Officer, survivor)
Holt, Robert E., QM2
Homic, Bennie S, MM1
Johnson, Nathaniel N., Matt1
Kassebaum, Harry J., MM1
Lorente, Walter G., EM1
Love, Lloyd M., S1
MacLachlan, Robert W., RM1
Mattes, Raymond C., TM3
Nelson, Robert E., AS
O’Brien, John P., SM3
Peters, Thomas V, LT
Peterson, Arthur B, F1
Pyler, Hazel B, MM2
Ramsey, Carl R., GM2
Rifkin, Steven S., F1
Russell, George G., EM2
Russler, Clifford E., SM1
Schmutz, John M., CRM
Seibert, William C., TM2
Shattuck, Herbert F., CTM
Stubbins, J.B., ENS
Taylor, H.L., ENS
Thompson, Thomas C., SC2
Tow, Paul H., TM2
Ward, Robert E.M., LT (Executive Officer, survivor)
Vezina, Rodrique D., F2

Note: The enlisted survivor is not, unfortunately, indicated on the list in United States Submarine Losses, World War II.