HMA Ships, MARYBOROUGH, (CMDR G.L. Cant, RAN, Commander of the Australian corvettes), BURNIE, GOULBURN, BALLARAT, TOOWOOMBA, WOLLONGONG, and BENDIGO, (corvettes), were headed for Australia, from Tjilatjap.
The sloop HMAS YARRA, (LCDR Robert Rankin, RAN), MMS 51, (minesweeper), and the merchant ships ANKING and FRANCO, were overwhelmed and sunk in the Indian Ocean by Japanese fleet of 3 cruisers, (ATAGO, TAKAO and MAYA), and destroyers, commanded by VADM Kondo. YARRA, senior ship in the convoy, engaged the enemy fleet after ordering her convoy to scatter. Of the ship’s complement of 151, 138 lost their lives, and the 13 survivors were later picked up by a Dutch submarine. LS R. Taylor, in charge of the last remaining gun, continued to fire after the abandon ship order, until he too was killed.