Goto Aritomo (1888-1942)

Photograph of Goto Aritomo

Wikipedia Commons

Goto Aritomo was a rear admiral commanding Cruiser Division 6 at the start of the Pacific War. He led his cruiser division through the invasions of Guam and Wake and the first New Guinea campaign. His cruisers also accompanied the Shoho at the Battle of the Coral Sea.

Goto's cruisers remained on loan to 8 Fleet at Rabaul following the New Guinea campaign, and were the only heavy units immediately available for counterattack following the U.S. landings at Guadalcanal. Admiral Mikawa, commander of 8 Fleet, led Goto's division and other light forces against the Allies and won a stunning victory at the Battle of Savo Island.

Goto was killed aboard the Aoba during the Battle of Cape Esperance, October 11-12, 1942.

Goto seems to have been an old sea dog who was given almost no shore or staff assignments during his career. He was a friend of Tanaka Raizo, with who shared with Goto his concerns about the divided command (between 8 Fleet and 11 Air Fleet) during the Guadalcanal campaign.

Service record

1888-1-23   born
Graduates from Naval Academy, standing 30th in a class of 149. Assigned to CA Kasagi
1911-3-11   BB Satsuma
1911-12-1 Ensign BB Iwami
1912-7-12   AS Toyohashi
1912-12-20   Gunnery School Basic Course
1913-5-24   Torpedo School Basic Course
1913-12-1 Lieutenant junior grade     
DD Murakumo
1914-10-10   4 Special Naval Landing Force
1914-12-28   Member, Interim Southern Defense Unit
1915-6-30   CA Chikuma
1916-12-1   Naval College B Course
1917-4-1 Lieutenant  
1917-5-1   Torpedo School Advanced Course
1917-12-1   Kongo
1918-12-11   DD Tanikaze
1920-12-1   Instructor, Torpedo School
1923-4-1   CA Yakumo
1923-12-1 Lieutenant commander     
1924-5-10   Commander, DD Tsuta
1925-12-1   Commander, DD Urakaze
1927-12-1   Commander, Numakaze
1928-3-1   Commander, Nokaze
1928-7-11   Commander, DD-25
1928-7-23   Commander, Nadakaze
1929-1-15   Commander, Uranami
1931-11-2   Commander, Destroyer Division 27
1932-12-1   Commander, Destroyer Division 5
1933-11-15 Captain  
1934-11-15   Commander, Destroyer Division 10
1935-11-15   Commander, Naka
1936-12-1   Commander, Atago
1937-7-12   Commander, Chokai
1938-11-15   Commander, Mutsu
1939-11-1   Commander, Yamashiro
1939-11-15 Read admiral
Commander, Destroyer Squadron 2
1941-9-10   Commander, Cruiser Division 6
1942-10-12 VIce admiral
Killed in action off Guadalcanal


Crenshaw (1995)

Fuller (1992)

Materials of IJN (accessed 2008-2-18)

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