Wednesday, June 26, 2013

HMAS Parramatta (U44)

From Wikipedia.

I mentioned that the HMAS (His Majesty's Australian Ship) Parramatta was sunk off Tobruk in the last entry.  I'd never heard of it.

The Parramatta was an Australian Grimsby Class sloop which saw service in the Red Sea and mediterranean.  It was torpedoed by the U-559 on 27 November 1941 and 138 of 162 lost their lives.

The 266-foot long ship was commissioned 8 April 1940 and immediately deployed to the Red Sea in July 1940 and then transferred to Mediterranean operations where it was one of several warships supplying the besieged Allied forces at Tobruk.  The ships were so dependable that they earned the nickname The Tobruk Ferry Service.

On June 24, 1941, the Parramatta and two other ships came under attack from 70 German dive bombers and after a severe fight, managed to shoot three down and received no major damage.  The HMS Auckland, though, was sunk and the Parramatta rescued 164 survivors.

On November 27, 1941, while escorting a convoy to Tobruk, it was hit by a single torpedo from the U-559 and sank almost immediately.  There were only 24 survivors and 138 died.

The Story of a Ship.  --GreGen

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