I’ve just discovered your site with great interest when looking for information to complete the Arctic Star application on behalf of my late father. I have already received his Arctic Emblem.
My aunt, his last surviving sister recently wrote me a letter about his dramatic return home in (she thought) 1942 after his family had been told he was presumed dead. Another sister was on a bus in North Shields when the bus driver stopped to help an exhausted seaman struggling along the road. He got him on the bus and his sister recognised him and all the passengers gave a round of applause. They managed to get him home where his mother and sisters could only get his woolly hat and boots off him before he fell asleep in the chair for three days! Evidently this story was in the local newspaper but I haven’t managed to find it yet.
I have his Certificate of Discharge book in front of me with all the Eagle Oil Shipping ships he was on in some detail. I think the most likely one re this story was the Fort Cedarlake as it says discharged at sea 17/3/43 so her memory could be slightly out. However it seems torpedoed more than once so it may not have been this one. Whatever a month after the Fort Cedarlake incident he married my mother whom he had not long met and he was back in the San Cirilo on 27/4/43.
I’m thinking of trying to create an ebook with all the details for my grandsons as I also have some old photos and I thought I would write to thank you for your very interesting site.
My thanks for your nice e-mail.
Here are some details about Fort Cedar Lake:
Fort Cedar Lake British Steam merchant from Uboat.net
We don't have a picture of this vessel at this time.
Name Fort Cedar Lake
Type: Steam merchant (North Sands)
Tonnage 7,134 tons
Completed 1942 - North Vancouver Ship Repairs Ltd, North Vancouver BC
Owner Hain SS Co, London
Date of attack 17 Mar 1943
Fate Sunk by U-665 (Hans-Jürgen Haupt)
Position 52.14N, 32.15W - Grid BD 2113
Complement 50 (0 dead and 50 survivors).
Convoy SC-122 (straggler)
Route Vancouver - Panama - New York (5 Mar) - Belfast Lough
Cargo General cargo
History Completed in December 1942 for US War Shipping
Administration (WSA), lend-leased on bareboat charter to British Ministry of War Transport (MoWT).
Notes on lossAt 03.05 hours on 17 Mar, 1943, U-338 (Kinzel) fired a spread of two torpedoes at the convoy SC-122 southeast of Cape Farewell and Kinzel thought that he had hit one ship, but in fact the Kingsbury in station #51 and the King Gruffydd in station #52 were hit and sunk. At 03.06 hours, a second spread of two torpedoes was fired, one of them struck the Alderamin in station #61, which sank later in 51°30N/34°55W. At
03.07 hours, the stern torpedo was fired, which missed the intended target, the Alderamin, but damaged the Fort Cedar Lake in station #124.
The Fort Cedar Lake (Master Charles Lloyde Collings) on her maiden voyage fell behind the convoy and was finished off by U-665 with a coup de grâce at 11.57 hours. The master, 42 crew members and seven gunners
were picked up by the British rescue ship Zamalek (Master Owen Charles Morris, DSO) and landed at Gourock on 22 March. CrewlistsWe have listing of 1 people who were on this vessel
Attack entries for Fort Cedar Lake
17 Mar 1943U-338Kptlt. Manfred KinzelDamaged7,134
17 Mar 1943U-665Oblt. Hans-Jürgen HauptSunk7,134
Locations of attacks on Fort Cedar Lake.
Ship sunk. Ship damaged.
A small piece about SS San Cirilo:
San Cirilo 1937 1955 sold to A. Lauro, Italy r/n Sportivo, 1957 converted to bulk carrier, 1971 scrapped. 8,012
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