The Snook Memorial, at the entrance to the North Shore Maritime Center, on Riverfront Drive in North Little Rock, AR
USS Snook (SS 279) was declared overdue and presumed lost with all hands on 16 May 1945, while on her ninth war patrol.
The last contact with Snook was on 08 April. At the time, Snook was at 18-40 N, 111-39 E, about 55 nautical miles from Hainan Island on the coast of SE China. The cause of her loss is unknown to this day.
Since she was never in contact with U.S. forces after 08 April, it is most likely that she was lost, either to an operational accident or to an Japanese attack of some kind (for which the records were lost or destroyed) shortly after her last communication.
The last American vessel to communicate with USS Snook was USS Tigrone(SS-419). Just hours before echanging messages with Snook, Tigrone was attacked by a Japanese submarine. Only the sharp eyes of one of her lookouts prevented Tigrone from being sunk. Since Tigrone was assigned the adjacent patrol area, it is possible, indeed likely, that this unknown Japanese submarine successfully attacked Snook.
Snook had been ordered to participate in lifeguard missions in the area east of Taiwan, in a part of the Okinawa Island chain. While she never acnolowdged those orders, there is the possibility that she was lost either while transiting the Lombok Strait enroute to her new mission, or she may have been sunk in the SE Okinawa area, as Japanese submarines had been instructed to watch for surfaced American submarines participating in rescue missions, and five Japanese submarines were sunk in the southeast Okinawa area in timeframe that Snook should have been there.