Merchant Navy War Grave Photos for reference

Discussion in 'War Grave Photographs' started by CL1, Aug 26, 2011.

  1. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    Amongst the thousands of graves at the Kanchanaburi Cemetery lies the body of the only known war grave belonging to a Merchant Seaman buried in Thailand.

    TOWERS, Deck Boy, JAMES JOSEPH, S.S. Empress of Asia. Merchant Navy. 13th June 1943. Son of Edward and Elizabeth Towers, of Liverpool.
     

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  2. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    From my book "Ropner's Navy"

    KENNINGTON, Master, ALBERT, S.S. Kirkpool (West Hartlepool). Merchant Navy. 14th March 1944. Age 32. Son of Samuel Charles and Martha Kennington; husband of Olive May Kennington, of Grimsby, Lincolnshire. Buried Yokohama War Cemetery. Brit. Sec. E. B. 13.


    SS Kirkpool under the command of Captain Albert Kennington had dispersed from the Freetown bound Convoy OS-19 and was making her way independently toLourenco Marques, Mozambique to load a cargo of iron ore for the UK via a brief stop off in Cape Town. A couple of days out of Cape Town the distinctive shape of a periscope was spotted by one of the ships lookouts. Kirkpool was equipped with a stern mounted 4 inch gun and unusually for a merchant ship, three depth charges. The U-boat quickly crash dived and no further echo soundings were picked up so Kirkpool proceeded without further incident. On reaching Cape Town the ships orders were changed and she was ordered to Durban where she would pick up a cargo of coal for Montevideo. With her cargo fully loaded the ship was underway by the 31st March and was to proceed to Uruguay sailing independently and without escort with only a four inch deck gun as her main armament. Ten days out the Kirkpool slowly edged her way across the South Atlantic unbeknown just over the horizon and out of sight the ships lookouts she was being monitored by radar from the German commerce raider Thor. On the same evening of the 10th April Kirkpool was suddenly rocked by a huge explosion as a 5.9-inch shell from one of the Thor’s six main guns slammed into the ship. All hell broke loose as round after round impacted into the ships hull and accommodation. After only eleven minutes the ship was ablaze from stem to stern and going down by the head. Kirkpool’s gun crew had not even time to man their own gun when the order to abandon ship was given. Even as the crew were abandoning ship Thor continued to pour shells into the hapless ship as well as raking the ships boat deck with machine gun fire. On the aft well deck the DEMS gunners were pinned down taking cover from the shelling and machine gun fire and could see no way of escape. Captain Kennington on seeing the plight of the gunners went to the fo’csle head with a number of crew members, releasing a cargo net containing buoyant material which floated down the port side of the ship enabling the gunners to jump overboard an cling to it while at the same time carrying them away from the burning wreck. Once the shelling had subsided Thor then went around pulling the survivors from the water for the next three and a half hours. The survivors were eventually transferred to the German supply ship Regenburg and then onto the German ship Dresden. Sailing in an Easterly direction and after a short stop off at Borneo, Java & Sumatra, the prisoners worst fears were confirmed, they were on their way to Japan and were officially handed over to the Japanese authorities over four months after being first sunk. Here the prisoners were split up and a number of Kirkpool’s crew including Captain Kennington were transported to the No.1 Camp Kawasaki at Yokohama near Tokyo where they would spend the next three years as forced labourers. Captain Kennington would not survive and he would die on the 14th March 1944. Official records state his cause of death was from pneumonia having succumbed at the Shinigawa Hospital, Tokyo. He is now interned at the Yokohama War Cemetery. Official documents also show an Indian Fireman & Trimmer named Eboe Ullah from Kirkpool died at Kawasaki on the 21st April 1945. He became sick and refused all food and died from the effects and was later buried in the Indian section of the Yokohama War Cemetery.
     

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  3. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    Trimmer PETER BARCLAY NEILON

    S.S. Maimoa (Southampton), Merchant Navy
    who died
    on 05 January 1945
    Husband of Annie Neilon, of Northolt.
    Remembered with honour
    NORTHOLT (ST. MARY) CHURCHYARD
     

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  4. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    LARSEN, Able Seaman, LARS PETER, S.S. Newminster (Newcastle). Merchant Navy. 26th July 1940. Age 62. Buried Stockton-on-Tees (Oxbridge Lane) Cemetery. Sec. C. C. of E. Row H. Grave 66.

    Cargo ship Newminster, 967grt, (Tyne Tees SS Co.) had loaded a cargo of coal in Seaham Harbour for Portsmouth and had sailed in the coastal Convoy FS-216 on 7th July 1940 down to Southend where she joined up with 21 ship coastal Convoy CW-8, sailing on the 25th July 1940 for the final part of her voyage. Shortly after leaving Southend, the convoy was attacked by an estimated seventy-five German aircraft, which decimated the small coasters. By the late afternoon twelve ships had been sunk. On the same night, the convoy came under another attack from German E-boats who sank a further three ships. The Newminster, although damaged in the attacks arrived at Dover under tow with one of her crew dead and another three injured.
     

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  5. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    BEAUMONT, Assistant Steward, EDGAR WRIGHT, S.S. Port Denison (London). Merchant Navy. 26th September 1940. Age 22. Buried Lyness Royal Naval Cemetery. Plot P. Row 3. Grave 10.

    From the book "They Shall Grow Not Old...."

    Cargo liner Port Denison, 8,043grt, (Port Line) had loaded a small amount of general cargo in London and proceeded to Methil in the coastal Convoy FN-283, which departed Southend on the 17th September 1940, arriving Methil two days later. The ship then joined up with the outward bound 38 ship Convoy OA-220. Once clear in to the Atlantic the Port Denison was supposed to disperse and set a course for Auckland & Lyttleton, New Zealand. On the 26th September the day the convoy sailed just six miles East off Peterhead, Aberdeenshire an aircraft approached the ship showing navigation lights, which, gave the impression that it was a friendly aircraft. It turned out to be German, dropping two aerial torpedo bombs. The first missed but the second hit the Port Denison abreast of the funnel blowing a large hole in the starboard side, which caused the engine room to flood. With the ship listing heavily the German aircraft returned and strafed the ship from stem to stern with machine gun fire before making off. The following day about seven miles from the Rattray Head lighthouse the ship finally sinks taking sixteen men with her.
     

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  6. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    ELLIOTT, Carpenter, RALPH, S.S. Embassage (Newcastle-on-Tyne). Merchant Navy. 27th August 1941. Age 46. Buried Ardroil Cemetery, Uig Isle of Lewis.

    From the book "They Shall Grow Not Old...."

    Cargo ship Embassage, 4,954grt, (Hall Bros.) had sailed from Hull & Leith with a general cargo including lorries and aircraft parts for Bathurst, South Africa and then had orders to sail to Pepel to load iron ore for the UK. Joining up with the outward bound 35 ship Convoy OS-4, which left Liverpool on the 23rd August 1941. In the early hours of the 27th August about 110 miles West of Ireland in approximate position 54’ 00N 13’ 00W the Embassage is struggling through a strong Westerly gale in a rough sea and heavy swell when the convoy is attacked by a number of U-boats. The Embassage is struck forward of the bridge by one torpedo fired from U-557 and as the bow ploughs in to the next trough the ship continues down and is soon swallowed up by the sea taking thirty-nine men with her. Three crewmen in blind panic hurled themselves into the sea as the ship disappeared beneath them and made it to an upturned lifeboat, which had broken free and had come to the surface. Here they clung onto for nearly four days until the passing Canadian Destroyer RCN Assiniboine came across them and eventually they were landed at Greenock. U-557 would go on to sink a further three Merchant ships the same day from OS-4.
     

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  7. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    CARR, Fireman and Trimmer, WILLIAM, S.S. Oakcrest (London). Merchant Navy. 1st December 1940. Age 25


    FENTON, First Radio Officer, MICHAEL, S.S. Oakcrest (London). Merchant Navy. 1st - 2nd December 1940. Age 43. Son of Thomas Fenton and of Katherine Fenton (nee Curran). Buried Borve (St. Brendan's) Roman Catholic Burial Ground.

    From the book "They Shall Grow Not Old...."


    Cargo ship Oakcrest, 5,407grt, (Crest Shipping Co. Ltd) had also been sailing in ballast in Convoy OB-244 to New York. On the 23rd November 1940 the ship, which had been straggling behind the main convoy, which had already been under attack with the loss of two ships two days earlier, was sighted by U-123. At 04.16 hours (CET) a torpedo detonated under the ships bridge and the ship sank within six minutes 250 miles West of Rockall in approximate position 53’ 00N 17’ 00W. In total 35 crew died, a number succumbing after being adrift for nine days in an open boat before those lucky enough to still be alive landed at Barra Island, Hebrides. Even after landing ashore a number of the crew died. The local men who found the survivors transported many suffering from frostbite and hypothermia to local homes in wheelbarrows. One man would die after drinking too much fresh water from a stream, his first drink in over a week. A total of nine men who had endured their epic journey died on Barra after landing ashore.
     

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  8. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    PEARSON, Second Engineer Officer (Offr.), EDWARD JOSEPH, S.S. Severn Leigh (Bristol). Merchant Navy. 4th September 1940. Age 54. Son of Edward Green Pearson and Lucy Pearson, of Newcastle-on-Tyne; husband of Eleanor Pearson, of Newcastle-on-Tyne. Buried Ardroil Cemetery, Uig Isle of Lewis.


    From the book "They Shall Grow Not Old...."

    Cargo ship Severn Leigh, 5,242grt, (Mark Whitwell & Son Ltd) had been sailing independently in ballast from Hull to St. John’s, New Brunswick after dispersing fro the 40 ship Convoy OA-200. On the 22nd August the ship is sighted by U-37 South of Iceland, whose first torpedo misses the ship. As the Severn Leigh tries to out run the U-boat, U-37 comes across a Norwegian ship, which has also dispersed from the same convoy and is subsequently dispatched. U-37 again takes up the chase of the Severn Leigh and the following day the ship is hit in the bow and begins to list to starboard. As the crew were abandoning ship in four boats the U-boat intercepted a distress message being sent and the U-boat commander decided to surface and sink the ship using his deck gun. It was also observed the ships own stern gun was still manned. Unfortunately as the U-boat fired shrapnel rounds at the ships hull below the water line it hit two lifeboats still alongside killing most of the occupants, with those still alive suffering from horrendous injuries. The ship finally sank in position 54’ 31N 25’ 41W. The Captain thirty-three crew, including a number of seriously wounded were left in one lifeboat and two rafts, with a number of these men succumbing to their injuries during the night. Realising his situation the Captain made a heart rendering decision and decided to leave the last three seriously wounded men on one of the rafts with supplies while the remaining men would try to reach land in the lifeboat. Twelve days later and with only the Captain and nine crew still alive after navigating their boat in over 850 miles of open sea they landed at Leverburgh, South Uist. Unfortunately a further two crew would die ashore from their ordeal. Miraculously one of the three injured men left on the raft was found alive after a British warship came across him by chance mid Atlantic and he was landed at Halifax, Nova Scotia the same day the lifeboat came ashore.
     

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  9. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    WILLIAMS, Able Seaman, WILLIAM LEWIS, A.D.C. 527 (of United Kingdom). Merchant Navy. 8th January 1946. Age 55. Son of Owen and Catherine Williams; husband of Hannah Williams, of Rhosybol. Buried Rhosybol (Christ Church) Shurchyard. South-West of Church.

    From the book "They Shall Grow Not Old...."

    A.D.C. 527 (Armaments Disposal Craft) had been en route from Silloth to Cairnryan carrying surplus ammunition to the Beaufort Dyke dumping grounds, a chasm midway between County Down and the South-West coast of Scotland. This trench was about seven miles long, two miles wide and 144 fathoms at its deepest point and was considered to be an ideal dumping ground for nearly two million tons of surplus ammunition and explosives. On the 8th January 1946 A.D.C. 527 blew up and disappeared after her cargo accidentally detonated, killing twelve crew. Nine bodies were eventually washed ashore.
     

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  10. ramacal

    ramacal 336/102 LAA Regiment (7 Lincolns), RA Patron

    Name: BALL, CHARLES OWEN
    Rank: Able Seaman
    Regiment/Service: Merchant Navy
    Unit Text: S.S. Fort Maisonneuve (London)
    Age: 61
    Date of Death: 15/12/1944
    Additional information: Husband of Margaret Ball, of Hull.
    Grave/Memorial Reference: 1. AA. 9.
    Cemetery: BERGEN-OP-ZOOM WAR CEMETERY

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  11. ramacal

    ramacal 336/102 LAA Regiment (7 Lincolns), RA Patron

    Name: JENKINS, DAVID HAINES
    Rank: Second Officer
    Regiment/Service: Merchant Navy
    Unit Text: S.S. Pacific (Hull)
    Age: 23
    Date of Death: 09/02/1943
    Additional information: Son of William John and Jessie Maude Jenkins, of Treorchy, Glamorgan; husband of Elsie Jenkins.
    Grave/Memorial Reference: 32. A. 11.
    Cemetery: BERGEN-OP-ZOOM WAR CEMETERY

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  12. ramacal

    ramacal 336/102 LAA Regiment (7 Lincolns), RA Patron

    Name: KERR, FRANCIS EDWARD
    Rank: Donkeyman
    Regiment/Service: Merchant Navy
    Unit Text: S.S. Samlong (London)
    Age: 30
    Date of Death: 03/08/1944
    Additional information: Son of Thomas Kerr, and of Frances Helen Kerr, of Hamilton, Lanarkshire.
    Grave/Memorial Reference: 6. D. 2.
    Cemetery: BERGEN-OP-ZOOM WAR CEMETERY

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  13. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    Name: JENKINS, DAVID HAINES
    Rank: Second Officer
    Regiment/Service: Merchant Navy
    Unit Text: S.S. Pacific (Hull)
    Age: 23
    Date of Death: 09/02/1943
    Additional information: Son of William John and Jessie Maude Jenkins, of Treorchy, Glamorgan; husband of Elsie Jenkins.
    Grave/Memorial Reference: 32. A. 11.
    Cemetery: BERGEN-OP-ZOOM WAR CEMETERY

    [​IMG]

    JENKINS, Second Officer, DAVID HAINES, S.S. Pacific (Hull). Merchant Navy. 9th February 1943. Age 23. Son of William John and Jessie Maude Jenkins, of Treorchy, Glamorgan; husband of Elsie Jenkins.

    From "They Shall Grow Not Old...."

    Cargo ship Pacific, 2,816grt W.H. Cockerline & Co.) loaded with a cargo of coal at Sunderland for London left Sunderland on the 7th February 1943 and was last reported on the 8th February. Nothing more was seen of the ship and her thirty-eight crew. By March 1943 the ship was recorded as missing and a Joint Arbitration Committee consider the ship lost by a “Marine Cause” A wreck presumed to be the Pacific was found just over eight miles East of Cromer in position 52’ 55N 01’ 30E.
     
  14. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    HILLAN, Donkeyman, MICHAEL, M.V. Pinto (Liverpool). Merchant Navy. 8th September 1944. Age 38. Son of Michael and Mary Hillan, of Glasgow; husband of Kathleen Hillan, of Glasgow. Buried Oban (Pennyfuir) Cemetery. Sec. I. Coll. grave 298-302A.

    Convoy Rescue ship Pinto, 1,346grt (Macandrews & Co. Ltd) had been sailing in the 100 ship Convoy HXF-305 from Halifax to Greenock. On the 8th September 1944 the ship had gone to pick up survivors from the torpedoed tanker Empire Heritage North, North-East of Tory Island, when she to was hit by a torpedo from U-482 and sank in position 55' 27N 08' 01W taking sixteen of her crew and two crew rescued from the tanker with her. Forty-one survivors were picked up by the Naval Trawler Northern Wave and landed at Londonderry.
     

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  15. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    One of 474 non war dead Merchant Navy graves looked after by the CWGC.

    MORTON, Captain, BERNARD JAMES LEO, S.S. Beckenham. Merchant Navy. 12th February 1944. Age 43. Buried Buenos Aries (Chacarita) British Cemetery. War Graves Plot. Grave 6. (Died from cardiac failure in hospital)
     

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  16. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    HOWLETT, Assistant Steward, RONALD WILLIAM GEORGE, M.V. Staffordshire (Liverpool). Merchant Navy. 28th March 1941. Age 35. Buried Sandwick Cemetery. Sec. M. Grave 2972.


    Passenger cargo ship Staffordshire, 10,654grt, (Bibby Line) had loaded a general cargo at Liverpool and 252 passengers for Rangoon, sailing independently on the 25th March 1941. On the 28th March about 150 nautical miles North-West of the Isle of Lewis the ship wass attacked by German aircraft and set on fire. Partially abandoned a number of crew were lost when being rescued by the Merchant ship SS Sama, while otherd died from wounds and exposure. The ship was eventually beached at Loch Ewe the following day. In total fourteen crew and fourteen passengers including a six year old boy perished.
     

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  17. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    WEST, Second Radio Officer, FRANK. S.S. Harborough (London). Merchant Navy. 6th November 1940. Age 18. Son of George Henry Betts West and Ada May West, of Gipsyville, Hull. Buried Lyness Naval Cemetery. Plot P. Row 3. Grave 18.


    Cargo ship Harborough, 5,415grt, (J&C Harrison Ltd) had sailed from the Clyde on the 5th Novemeber 1940 in the 27 ship coastal Convoy WN-31 bound for Methil. The following day off Wick, the convoy was attacked by German aircraft with the loss of the Clan Mackinalay. The Harborough was also hit and caught fire, which was brought under control and the ship was towed into Scapa Flow the following day. The only casualty being the young Second Radio Officer.
     

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  18. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    Chief Engineer Officer JOHN CHARLES RUTHVEN

    S.S. Empire Tristram. (Sunderland)., Merchant Navy
    who died age 58
    on 23 June 1944
    Husband of Grace Ruthven, of Helensburgh, Dunbartonshire.
    Remembered with honour
    HENDON CEMETERY AND CREMATORIUM
     
  19. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    Steward JOHN FARREN LEE

    M.V. Rangitiki (Plymouth), Merchant Navy
    who died
    on 07 October 1943
    Son of Albert James Lee and Mary Lee; husband of Mary Elizabeth Lee, of West Worthing, Sussex.
    Remembered with honour
    HENDON CEMETERY AND CREMATORIUM
     

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  20. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    MacLEOD, Sailor, MURDO, B E M, S.S. Stockport (Grimsby). Merchant Navy. 25th February 1943. Age 39. Son of Roderick and Cathrine MacLeod. Tower Hill Memorial Panel102. Commemorated on family headstone.

    Convoy Rescue Ship Stockport, 1,683grt, (London & North Eastern Railway Co.) had been sailing with the fort-eight ship Convoy ON-166 from Liverpool to New York which sailed on the 11th February 1943. On the 21st February, the convoy was intercepted by nineteen U-boats of which thirteen made attacks, sinking fourteen Merchant ships and damaging a further seven ships over a four-day period. The Stockport was torpedoed by U-604 on the 23rd February and sunk East of Cape Race in position 47’ 22N 34’ 10W. The Captain, all fifty-one crew, her nine DEMS gunners plus ninety-one seamen rescued from other sunken ships onboard were lost.
     

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