10 November 2009

S.O.S.


From the Sydney Morning Herald on this day in 1936:

SHIP FOUNDERS.
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German Motor Vessel.
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LINER QUEEN MARY TO RESCUE

London, Nov. 9 - The German motorship Isis (4454 tons) has foundered in a storm in the Atlantic.

The only member of the crew of 40 to be rescued was the cabin boy, named Roethke, aged 17.

The liner Queen Mary was nearing Southampton when it deviated from its course in order to race through a 90-mile-an-hour gale in response to an S.O.S. from the Isis 200 miles west of Land's End.

The liner Westernland (16,231 tons) reached the position given by the Isis, but reported that there was not any trace of the vessel. It continued to search for lifeboats.

Roethke was picked up by the Westernland, but was too exhausted to tell what happened.

The Queen Mary was delayed by her search, which resulted in the discovery of one empty boat, and will not arrive at Southampton until to-morrow.

The captain of the Isis wirelessed at 6:35 p.m. yesterday that the hatches had been stove in, and that he was preparing to abandon the vessel, as the forecastle head was under water.

The Queen Mary had been fighting mountainous seas for three days, during which Captain Peel did not leave the bridge.

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