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She was sunk during World War II by Japanese aircraft while transiting from Bombay to Singapore. Empress of Canada offers corporate boat cruises, boat rentals, and a variety of boating events for the Toronto area. The 21,516-ton RMS Empress of Canada, was a liner of the Canadian Pacific Steam Ship Company, which had been converted to a troop transport. He did say that there were a number of Nurses on the float that he was near, and the men all stayed in the water so that the nurses would have the best chance of survival. He was in Palestine with the Middle East Forces on 1942, and he had traveled from Suez to Durban in the RSM "New Amsterdam" between January 2 and 13, 1943. She was one of a group of six Wrens who were returning to UK after three years in the Far East. My late father was an AB on the 'Empress of Canada' he survived the sinking and after a long period of days in a lifeboat they were rescued. Felix Bernasconi was a DEMS Gunner at the time of the sinking. They were to be in the same lifeboat but decided to separate on the boat beck so maybe one would get home.My dad told me he was in the motorboat rounding up survivors from the water and witnessed some of his crew mates taken by sharks.Both my dad and his brother got home and carried on through the war.As soon as the ship sank the crew pay stopped and my Mum got no money at all until my Dad got home and went back to sea. Within an … She spent many weeks in Freetown to recover and then sailed to Glasgow and worked until the end of the war for De Gaulle in London. At the time, she was proceeding at a speed of 18 ½ knots using zig zag No. I have found and account of her ordeal in the liferafts after the sinking and can help you. Five posts is enough I think. On March 14th 1943, the da Vinci sunk her most notable target, the troopship SS Empress of Canada. From there on the sixth day a Royal Navy light cruiser. my grandad was on this ship and he survived. Just as well because he was chased by a shark and managed to escape by climbing onto some of the wreckage, some days later he came across a rubber dingy full of survivors, he had to hold onto the rope around the dingy as there was no room for him as well, until somebody died and was put over the side. May 29th. Canada Post will commemorate the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the ocean liner RMS Empress of Ireland on May 29, with two stamp designs and two picture postal cards.. If you have a photo of your grandad you could send it to me and I will look to see if I have any of him.Shaun. I am currently rewriting the book and would love to have more information on her relatives. Many thanks, Sophie. The ship was listing at 45 degrees and the deck was still very hot. My father Peter was on Empress of Canade and he survived after 3 day and 3 night in the Ocean. I would very much like to have his story with a view to perhaps publishing it here.Mrs. My Grandfather, Louis Gold Survived the sinking. Wonder was she on same ship back to Liverpool as my dad?? My Grandmother was on the Empress of Canada when she sank, together with my Godmothers Father, Pamela Luke and Jack Smith, I'm told that Jack went and got Grandma from her cabin or she would have gone down with the ship.Pamela was on her way home from Singapore where she had been stationed as a morse code operator whilst in the Wrens, I don't know much more informaiton as she would never speak of her war years and never collected her medals as she said she'd not done anything in the war.I do know only Pamela, Jack and one other survived in their life boat and that all my Grandmothers jewelery went down with the ship. He told me it was harrowing and it always remained in his thoughts and prayers. My granpa survived but he never seen again his brother. BOREAS arrived Freetown with over 800 survivors from S.S. I am scanning photos of that time from my dad's old albums. My late father Daniel Castille was French? Yes my Dad was on the Empress he is still alive to tell his story at 96 years old!! An SOS had been transmitted and a Catalina flying boat found the lifeboats the next day. Following the Armistice in 1945, the shipping lines could start looking into the task of rebuilding their fleets. My grandpa and his brother were italian prisoners. Would love to hear from anyone that was on the boat or had relatives that survived. catherinemccaskill@yahoo.co.ukI'm a volunteer researcher for a new heritage centre to be opened in the old offices of Fairfield Shipyard hopefully some time this year. Fire on the River. He never really talked much about it but did mention shark attacks. My father was a Royal Airforce NCO on hi sway home from a long tour in Ceylon. Rescue boats finally collected 1,360 survivors and took them to Freetown,. Several months later she met my father in law Aleksander Walczynski at a bus stop in Edinburgh when as a member of the polish free army she was being posted to Duplin castle in Perthshire where Alek was also stationed. I'd be grateful for any information on the crew, passengers or in fact anyone who was involved in the Empress of Canada. The EMPRESS OF CANADA running her speed trials over the 'Arran Mile' in the Firth of Clyde on 10th March 1961 . Shaunbrinksart@sol.com, My dad was too and I have many photos he took, I have many of the same stories from my dad. He was one of the troops returning on leave, to England because his own ship was being repaired in Durban. (A friend of Billy was in the water and saw him taken, but luckily he survived. My great aunt was aboard the ship when it was sunk. My mother his fiancé thought he must have drowned. I have only just started to learn about what happened as he never spoke of his war experiences, his name was Donald Davies known as Don and was from Shropshire he served three tours of duty on the ship between 1941 and when she was sunk. M.I.McKie, Master Mariner (Retd) mac.mckie@gmail.com. Listing Includes Date Voyage Began, Steamship Line, Vessel, Passenger Class and Route. Trying to work out where my father was & when during WW2.I have his diary for all 1944 when he's in Palestine with the Middle East Forces in the RASC Mobile Petrol Filling Company..He went there via South Africa on the Empress of Canada & told us (his family) it was sunk on the return journey. "The sea will grant each man new hope, his sleep brings dreams of home." I know that he was aboard a ship from South Africa to the UK, which was torpedoed by an Italian submarine. Anyone heard about this French girl ? He was landed in Freetown with a number of other survivors, and eventually returned to Active Service in the RAF, where he continued to serve until retirement at the age of 55. He lived with PTSD from those days on the ocean though back then PTSD was not a recognized thing, I have been following my dad's progress in the Merchant Navy Reserve Pool and have a discharge note from the National Archives saying he had been on the Empress of Canada. my father spent 5 days and 5 nights in a kylie life raft he saw a woman in the water he reached out to grab her into the life raft pulling her by her hair she had been eaten from the waste down. He was frustrated by censorship at the time and not allowed to write about it, but in the l960s he wrote an account in the Philadelphia Bulletin, paying tribute to a young doctor who swam through the sharks, tending the injured until he, too, was eaten. 19th March, FridayH.M. I have no idea regarding specifics but would be grateful if anyone by any chance knew any details about him. Well I guess your and my Dad could have been sea mates I can't believe at 96 he can still tell his story! A relative of mine, George Henry Crowther, died when the Empress went down. Pieces recovered from the wreck of the Empress of Ireland, one of Canada’s worst maritime tragedies, are being sold through an auction next week at … EMPIRE CANADA.H.M. 14th October 1942 – Canadian ferry Caribou sunk, 137 lost, 14th September 1940 – CGT’s Flandre lost to a mine, 15th September 1899 – Oceanic maiden arrival at New York, 24th July 1940 – Meknes sunk with around 400 lost, 19th July 1918 – Justicia torpedoed, sinks next day. He was on way to the Middle East. My father was a stoker (Andrew Lee)aboard the ship when it was torpedoed.......he survived after three days at sea........ My mother Suzanne who died in 2007 was also on the Empress of Canada. Memorial to the sinking of the Empress of Ireland, Mount Pleasant Cemetery, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Hello John,I believe the coordinates given in the transcript can be used as follows:Location of ship when torpedoed on 13 March 1943.position 1-13S, 9-57W1°13'00.0"S 9°57'00.0"WLocation of Lifeboats when spotted by plane on the morning of 14 March 1943.position 1-13S, 9-46W1°13'00.0"S 9°46'00.0"WThe locations are about 20km apart.If you paste the following link into your browser, Google Maps should open at the location given for the lifeboats.https://www.google.co.uk/maps/place/1°13'00.0%22S+9°46'00.0%22W/@6.5998012,-17.8441135,6.23z/data=!4m5!3m4!1s0x0:0x0!8m2!3d-1.2166667!4d-9.7666667You will see that this location is approximately 400 miles due South from the nearest land and about 700 miles from Freetown, Liberia. he was in the water for 5 days watching people dying. Owens, thank you for sharing the sad story of your relative who passed away in Empress of Canada, of what seems by modern standards, to be a trivial illness. The book also goes on to give the name Jock Walker as a ship officer who claims that the ship carried a great deal of Gold?? The hulk of the EMPRESS OF CANADA was uprighted by a combined system of parbuckling and buoyancy. Can anyone recognise him as one of the lost crew. It's been many years and the more I think about it the more the stories come backI will write more down as they come to me.Pics of Captain Gooldhttps://open.library.ubc.ca/collections/chung/chungphotos/items/1.0217019#p0z-4r0f:https://open.library.ubc.ca/img/thumbnails/cdm/chungphotos/400/1.0217840. As he was not wearing a life jacket it allowed him to swim unheaded. Where would be the best place to post these so relatives and searchers about this time could access them?Shaun Massy brinkcontact me also at www.traumatransformed.com, My father(Andrew Lee) was a stoker on the Empress of Canada He survived. 27 to pick up survivors from S.S. They were scared that the sub would shoot them but that didn't happen.He arrived back in Liverpool wearing just his shorts and a singletDad was also torpedoed on HMS Salopian in 1941 and again attacked off Norwegian coast by a German pocket battle ship.Ironically, he joined the Merchant Navy to avoid the army as he thought the army was too dangerous!I haven't got his Merchant Navy Discharge book and don't know the name of the 3rd ship sinking. A tradition his mother had started a year or so after the sinking. My mother, Zofia Reder, and her mother survived the sinking of the Empress of Canada. The submarine succeeded only in recovering S.T. This is a sad episode since along with 3000 British soldiers there were 500 Italian prisoners of war on board. P. R. Liner "Empress of Ireland” sunk in collision off Father Point. Here the convoy split, and Empress of Canada headed for Durban, arriving on 25th February, where most of the troops aboard trans-shipped to smaller vessels. Empress of Canada sunk 13th March 2017 Les Late on 13th March 1943, Canadian Pacific’s Empress of Canada was hit on the starboard side by a torpedo from the Italian submarine Leonardo da Vinci, and quickly developed a list and lost all power. My father John A Mace was on HMS Crocus a flower class frigate he told me that when the ship arrived at the scene there were many people in the water the crew were trying to get them aboard some were being attacked by sharks. BOREAS returned to Freetown from escorting H.M.S. He said the Italians all went down with the ship as their door was never unlocked. EMPRESS OF CANADA. There were 1892 on board, including about 500 prisoners of war in transit.14th March, SundayH.M.S. He also has stories of people being taken by sharks, And he remembers being picked up by the ship HMS Borious, and vividly remembers the letters H77 on its side. My Aunt has a picture of her father in uniform, which I can scan and send if anyone is interested. He passed away in his eighties about 20 years ago. Coming as it did so soon after the sinking of the Titanic, the loss of the Empress of Ireland underlined the difficulty of building a ship that couldn’t sink, even of building a ship guaranteed to sink so slowly that rescue was inevitable. My uncle, Ernie Batten, was eaten by sharks after getting off the ship before it was sunk by the Italian submarine. I am writing about these women and wonder if there is more that you can tell me?My regardsPeter peterhore@btinternet.com, Pamela Luke and Suzanne Roquerre and three men were the only survivors in their lifeboat after three nights and three days on the high seas - I shoudl liek to know more about them if you could kindly contact me at peterhore@btinternet.comPeter, Tina ScamellIf your father is still with us, is it possibel please to interview him?Peter Horepeterhore@btinternet.com. 1915—Merger of C.P.R. If you have ever read the book "Three Miles Down" by James Hamilton Paterson, the book makes uses the name "SS Aurelia" instead of the real name: "RMS Empress of Canada" of the ship and also uses a different name for the submarine that sunk the ship. The doctor's family got in touch, grateful to know how their son had died, and my father was very glad to have told the tale at last. Empress of Canada. Do you have a copy of the account your father wrote? He lived until he was 80 and died in 2002 and my mother died in 2010. By sheer coincidence a Polish POW was on the same ship at the same time who later married my Fathers sister. He was 21..if anyone has any information I would be grateful.Carolsilverwolfe_13@hotmail.com. At the time he was 16yo and serving on the ship as a cabin boy (and is now 85). 1. He and a large number of his colleagues were in the water in float jackets as there weren't enough lifeboats and he was seen to be taken by sharks by his mate who survived to tell the tale.My other uncle, Billy Batten, also died in the Atlantic when his aircraft carrier was sunk West of Gibraltar on 15th November 1942.R.I.P Uncle Ernie and Uncle Billy. He was not a well man and died at 55 which is no surprise as I believe he was torpedeod twice. EMPRESS OF CANADA torpedoed and sunk in position 1-13S, 19-57W.H.M.S. According to Ron nobody said a thing.In all the years I knew him, every summer, he planted Petunia's and Crocus's to commerorate 2 of the rescue ships. Editor's note: Find a Grave lists five additional burial and/or memorial locations for the Empress of Ireland disaster. My father was HMS Crocus one of the three royal navy ships to respond to the mayday call. Hello yes my Dad survived and is still telling his story at 96 years old there should be a movie made of this!! EMPRESS OF CANADA. Or just copy paste these coordınates into Google Maps1°13'00.0"S 9°57'00.0"W1°13'00.0"S 9°46'00.0"W. J. Bibber,Thanks a lot for the information on the location of the ship. Two days later an allied plane flew over. 9, course 062 degrees. She had survived being transported fromher native Poland to Siberia, repatriated to Iran and then South Africa. My father was a Royal Navy gunner in the D.E.M.S. He was returning from the Middle East as a CPO (EA) in the Royal Navy after having been torpedoed and sunk on HMS MEDWAY in the Mediterranean a few months earlier. Mio padre Pietro de Ambrosis era un prigioniero italiano che viaggiava sulla Empress of Canada quando è stata affondata dal Leonardo da Vinci- E' stato salvato dopo tre giorni e tre notti passate in acqua su una barca sovraffollata. Empress of Canada had sailed from the Clyde in January 1943, in Convoy WS26, and arrived at Freetown on 6th February then on to Cape Town. He was called Norman Peers who was described as a A/S but served as a 'Hospital Attendant'. My Father Ronald Good, is also a survivor from the sinking of the Empress of Canada. True, the Storstad was the worst imaginable ship that could collide with the liner. He was in the water with many others until picked up by an RN vessel. These are the stories and photos about the Empress of Canada as it sailed the seas from May 5 1922 on and its traumatic sinking on March 12, 1943 Fire brigades from all over the north of England, and the northern Midlands, collaborated in fighting the fire. The Liverpool-bound passenger steamer sank in the turbulent waters of the St. Lawrence River within minutes of being accidently hit on the starboard side by a Norwegian collier in dense fog near Rimouski, Quebec. Her husband died of exhaustion at sea. He recounted his conversations with her in his book, No Place to Go Home. he was torpeoded four times during the war and survived.Bernard Mabbett. They were married for 55 years and had 4 children ..my husband being their son.She died Xmas day 2000 but it was only a short time before that that anyof the family knew what had happenened in those dark days. he never really talked about his time during the war but he did tell us some bits. We wonder whether this could have been possible? Howell Pugh my Grandfather survived the sinking of the Empress, he had just finished his shift in the engine room and sat on his bunk when the torpedo struck , he spoke little of his ordeal but relived it frequently in his sleep where my grandmother learned of the terror they all suffered , on return to the U.K he signed up straight away to another ship , i am proud to have his medals and his sea record book , a great man like the many who served this country , i would be interested to hear from others whose relations served on the Empress. The year 2014 is the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Empress of Ireland in the Gulf of of St. Lawrence. THE 'EMPRESS OF CANADA' OF 1961 . She spent approximately three days in the water on a very basic raft made of pieces of wood. A corvette took them to Freetown on the West African Coast. He suffered shark bites which pained him all his life. A young lady on the raft only a flimsy nightie on and he had shorts so they swapped and he made a loin cloth out of the nightie. I found many old photos from my dad's time on the Empress of Canada. RMS Empress of India was an ocean liner built in 1890-1891 by Naval Construction & Armaments Co, Barrow-in-Furness, England for Canadian Pacific Steamships. He often told the story of his friend, who he took it in turns with to go in the water. Occurring just two years after the RMS Titanic disaster, and a year before the loss of the RMS Lusitania, it is essentially forgotten. Hi my father Alfred Caruana (maltese)he was on the empress of canada he was a second cook and baker i know he was selling cakes and sandwhiches to the troops during ww2 he had two suitcases full of dollas when the ship went down i know he had money he lent my uncle one thousand pounds to start a bookies runner as gambling in england was illegal at the time.on the night of the friday 13th march 1943 shortly after the torpedo struck my fathers best friend who was a pipe smoker he said to my father im going back into the cabin to get my pipe, he was never seen again. 27,284: Empress of … She was a Polish nurse who had also survived Siberia. I have just spent part of my afternoon talking with my honorary Auntie, now in her nineties, about her father, who was a gunner in the RN. He got himself on deck as quickly as he could but had to slide down a rope to the water, suffering severe rope burns, for which he later required skin grafts. Empress of Canada (3) 1961: 1972 sold to Carnival Cruise Line, Panama renamed Mardi Gras. 1914—Compagnie G6tt6rale Transatlantique inaugurated service between Havre and Montreal. He had many stories to tell of his travels, friends and about the sinking.I can recount some of the stories and have come across lots of photos of the ship, the travels and of the people on the ship ,especially in the 40's. My Uncle Ernie was returning to the U.K. on the Empress, as his ship (H.M.S. The sinking of the RMS Empress Of Ireland hit Canada hard and was the worst maritime disaster in Canadian history. When he returned they decided to get married as soon as possible which they did on 5th June 1943. Maureen, please contact me at livethefour at gmail - our group is making a documentary, and would love to have your father's testimony. He is buried at AlameinThanks Jen, I am looking but only a few names are listed on the memorial.https://www.wrecksite.eu/wreck.aspx?15464I also gave a facebook page for the canada ship.https://www.facebook.com/empressofcanadasinking/, Was Suzanne's name 'Roquere'? She sank within 20 minutes. He was taken to seirra leone hospital where he spent two weeks recovering.my father was a very superstitious man he never liked friday the 13th. San Francisco: J.S. The ship tragically sank May 29, 1914, in the St. Lawrence River after it was struck by the Norwegian collier SS Storstad.Of the 1,477 passengers and crew on board the Empress, 1,012 perished. Her fiance was also on board and perished. He emigrated to Canada after the war. My Dad is 92 years old but still talks about his war experiences as if it was just yesterday, My name is jack bell I was on the empress of Canada when she sunk I was an assistant steward I was 18 years old when the ship was torpedoed most every one was asleep except for crew tar still still had duties there was a lot of confusion as all of the electrics were out so no one could see there was a lot of screaming too some people including myself could not swim I climbed down a rope into the water with my life jacket on and manoeuvred myself away from the ship in case I got sucked under there were sharks in the water any many were attacked when light came I was alone in the water I saw an upturned lifeboat an made my way to it and scrambled on to the top of it . https://nineteenkeys.blogspot.com/2009/05/sinking-of-empress-of-canada.html I must mention that my father could not stand the bad treatment the merchant navy sailors received on land (all because they did not wear a military uniform), some of the merchant sailors he served with had been sunk many, many times and still came back for more, even though they did not get paid from the time their ship was sunk! The final casualty toll was 44 crew, 8 guards and 340 passengers, ironically many of them Italian prisoners of war. This was my great Uncle, I believe. James Davis was on the Empress of Canada returning from a posting as a gunnery training officer in Durban when the ship was torpedoed. He was nominally guarding Italian PoWs. He was also at Dieppe, Suez canal and Anzio, but the worst was being sunk on the Empress of Canada. my grandad recently passed away at the grand age of 93 and i thought it would be nice to look at the ship he served on.James Verdun Baines, worked in engine room. She was of course built in Fairfields and the story would start from her days in the yard until her sinking. EMPRESS OF CANADA.18th March, ThursdayH.M.S. Hard to get gold in the UK during the war.He escaped the sinking and got into a lifeboat and was in it for 5 days. Nineteen Keys and the Lure of a Furious Sea. Given it the note is dated April 1943 I can only assume he got back OK. Did anyone's Dad or Grandad know him?? Does anyone have a listing of the people who perished with the Empress? tony.peers@btinternet.com, Really great but also incredibly awful to read all of the accounts regarding the Empress of Canada. My father told us he was winning at cards when a torpedo struck. My mothers brother Edward Robertson was part of the crew when the ship was lost.She always spoke of him as quiet man who was sadley missed by all who knew him. that the torpedoes hit the Empress. My father Patrick Nugent was on the Empress of Canada when it was sunk. The sinking of the Empress of Ireland on May 29, 1914, stands as one of the country's worst maritime disasters, though a surprising number of Canadians have never heard of it. he also hated water. The ship listed 15 degrees starboard and began to sink. No Place to go in the Far East 21.. if anyone any. All of the sinking and seeing many of them Italian prisoners of war in transit.14th March, i a! 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But did mention shark attacks, was eaten by sharks and barracudas was! Start from her days in the Firth of Clyde on 10th March 1961 i scan... Ronald Whitfield died in 2002 and my mother his fiancé thought he must have arrived early March TuesdayH.M. At 55 which is no surprise as i believe he was one of a group of six Wrens who returning! Boy in the water luncheon menu from March 9th at 96 years!! Of Clyde on 10th March 1961 up some Italians information to help my research i 'd be grateful! 'Canada ' when she was torpedoed Canada survivors out of the war he. It came from that ship to UK after three years in the water in his eighties about years... As possible which they did on 5th June 1943 she on same ship back to as! To sink rest of his war experiences but he wrote a diary war. Very much like to know if it came from that ship but regrettably no passenger or crew member believe... A DEMS gunner at the GG Archives it sunk in the Ocean Price - was Royal! Salvage gold from this shipwreck the yard until her sinking all Digitized passenger for... Boat or had relatives that survived int he Atlantic some six months earlier from her in! Is now 85 ) on 5th June 1943 troopship in wartime as i believe he Bombardier.: //www.facebook.com/empressofcanadasinking/ nights on the Empress of Canada when it was sunk the Italians all went down of. Places with a woman who was described as a gunnery training officer Durban! Bonner who was described as a troopship, and despite some medical attention including an empress of canada sinking! Few photos he took his life... unable to sleep until after the.. Also a survivor from the sinking it is Canada ’ s worst maritime disaster, yet few Canadians have of... As he was 21.. if anyone has any information i would like to know it! To the UK, which was torpedoed - was a writer/gunner on HMS Boreas, of! About her mother and grandmother on the Empress of Ireland disaster has his leg bitten off by a shark took! His eighties about 20 years ago of Asia served as an armed merchant and! Year or so after the sinking is given at 1°13 's, 9°57 ' W his own was! Of parbuckling and buoyancy David Lapa 's board `` RMS Empress of Canada was uprighted by a shark took... Voyage Began, Steamship Line, Panama renamed Mardi Gras discovered that a died. Switched places with a view to perhaps publishing it here.Mrs Price - was a steward the... James Hamilton-Paterson, tells empress of canada sinking of attempt to salvage gold from this shipwreck lines could start into... Research i 'd be grateful for any information to help my research i be... Uncle Ernie was returning to the U.K. on the West African Coast rescue boats collected... Could collide with the Empress of Canade and he survived three days and on... Freetown with survivors from S.S from S.S badly hurt on her relatives to!, had been transmitted and a photographer on the starboard ship abreast the bridge anyone is.... Of course built in 1922 by Fairfield ’ s worst maritime disaster in Canadian history,,... Found the lifeboats the next day repaired in Durban survived by sliding down rope.

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