Bermuda-based warship’s sinking remembered today
The gallant last stand of a Bermuda-based British armed merchant cruiser against a powerful German battleship was today remembered.
Bermuda Sea Cadets and dignitaries laid wreaths at the Albuoy’s Point memorial to HMS Jervis Bay, which was sunk as it battled to protect a World War Two convoy against a German pocket battleship, as part of Remembrance Day.
Lieutenant Commander (SCC) Michael Frith, of the Bermuda Sea Cadets, said the organisation was delighted to play a part in the commemoration.
He added: “The cadets think this is an important parade for them to do.
“The newer ones aren’t as familiar with it, but they know what it’s about and they’re proud to carry on the tradition.”
Cadet Emma Sampson-Pitt, 14, who piped the traditional Royal Navy signals at the service. added her grandfather had served in the RAF during World War Two, so she had a family connection to the conflict.
She said: “I’m happy to be here. I feel proud to be part of remembering these people.”
HMS Jervis Bay, which was based at the then Royal Naval Dockyard, set sail to escort a convoy made up of ships from Bermuda and Halifax, Nova Scotia, to the UK in November 1940.
But the convoy ran into trouble after it was spotted by the Admiral Scheer, a modern German heavy cruiser.
Captain Edward Fegen, despite having only small guns, some dating back to the previous century, altered course to engage the Admiral Scheer.
It fought a desperate action against overwhelming odds until it sank with almost all hands, including the captain.
Captain Fegen, who was Irish, went down with his ship and was later awarded a posthumous Victoria Cross, Britain’s highest award for gallantry.