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On 24/Jan/43, the only two survivors of U-164, after an ordeal of 21 days adrift in the ocean, washed out in the desert coast of the State of Maranhão.  Rescued  by local fishermen of a small town, they were   given the    best  available  emergency  medical   assistance. Soon after they recovered   from   hypothermia and   malnutrition    they were handed over to   the Mayor which proudly treated them as a legitimate Prize of War.

When Brazilian Naval authorities were aware of the issue, a group of officers dashed to the scene. Once confronted by the men in uniform, the Mayor flatly refused to surrender the bewildered Germans until threatened  by the “mailed fist”. They finally boarded a US Navy PBY-5 and set for Natal for interrogations before facing a long internment in one US POW Camp.  

KorvetenKapitan Otto Fechner

In the picture oil slick can be seen as well as the life raft the PBY dropped to rescue the survivors.

By this time U-164 has disappeared from surface leaving only the large oil patch.

U-164 in her final moments. The sub was attacked by all sides leaving no option for her doomed crew. Several men were seen on the surface, but only two managed to get ashore. Pictures kindly sent by Cap. Jerry Mason USN Ret.


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