Wednesday, September 13, 2017

PQ 18 Attacked

SUN 13 SEP 1942
North Russia
German aerial and submarine attacks begin against convoy PQ 18, bound for Archangel, USSR, approximately 100 miles southwest of Spitsbergen. U.S. freighter Oliver Ellsworth is torpedoed by German submarine U-589 at 75°52'N, 07°55'E, and abandoned; one Armed Guard sailor is killed in the attack. Survivors (42 merchant seamen and 27 Armed Guard crewmen) are rescued by merchantman Copeland and British armed trawler HMS St. Kenan; the latter scuttles the crippled Oliver Ellsworth with gunfire. Later that day, German planes attack, torpedoing freighter John Penn at 75°52'N, 07°55'E; three of the 40-man merchant crew are killed. British destroyer HMS Eskimo and minesweeper HMS Harrier rescue the survivors, who include the 25-man Armed Guard; John Penn is scuttled by escort vessels. Shortly thereafter, freighter Oregonian is also torpedoed at 76°00'N, 09°30'E; escort vessels rescue 21 of the 40-man crew, in addition to 8 of the 14-man Armed Guard.

Plane drops rations to one raft containing 19 survivors from U.S. freighter West Lashaway (sunk by German submarine U-66 on 30 August 1942) (see 18 and 24 September 1942).

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