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The HMAS Armidale!

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    The HMAS Armidale!

    My uncles uncle was Teddy sheean.....my mother's sister's husband was Teddy Sheenans nephew: Darryl sheenan,he (Darryl) was my uncle only by marriage to my family blood auntie,so,he was not blood related to me but he was blood related to my cousins: Darren sheenan,Dean Sheenan and Damien Sheenan.

    Quote:
    HMAS Armidale, was sunk by enemy action on 1 December, 1942, off Timor, while taking supplies and reinforcements to the commandos fighting ashore. The ship had been hit by two torpedoes and a near-miss bomb had helped by blowing a hole in her side. The Captain, Lieutenant-Commander David Richards, gave the order to abandon ship but one man refused - Ordinary Seaman Teddy Sheean. He struggled back to the after Oerlikon gun, strapped himself in and fired at the planes strafing his shipmates in the water. The ship was sinking so rapidly that when he fastened those straps he must have known he would go down with the ship.

    He poured a stream of 20mm shells at the planes and sent one cartwheeling into the sea. A Zero flashed in, its guns blazing, and slashed Sheean's chest and back wide open. With blood pouring from his wounds he kept fighting. The ship was now sinking faster and with water lapping his feet he kept shooting. The men in the water gasped in amazement as they saw the blood-stained, desperate youngster wheel his gun from target to target, his powerless legs dragging on the deck.

    Then came the most incredible sight of all - the ship plunged down and the sea rose up past Sheean's waist to his shattered chest, but still he kept firing. Even when there was nothing left of the ship above water, tracer bullets from Sheean's gun kept shooting up from under the water in forlorn, bizarre arcs.

    Armidale and Sheean had kept fighting to the end. It was valour above and beyond the call of duty.

    Sheean was not the only hero that day and on the grim days that were to follow. Ten of the crew and 37 soldiers had been killed in the action. In the water now were 102 men - 73 of Armidale's crew and 29 soldiers, including three AIF men, two Dutch army officers and 24 Javanese troops. And, of course, sharks and deadly sea snakes. They were 110 km from Timor, 470 km from Darwin and 400 km from the nearest Australian land, Bathurst Island.

    Next day the Captain, Lieutenant-Commander David Richards, left with 21 others in the 5.3-metres motor-boat to try to get help. It was not until four harrowing days later - six days since the sinking - that the motor-boat was spotted and the survivors rescued, by the corvette HMAS Kalgoorlie.

    Meanwhile back at the scene of the sinking, something approaching a miracle had taken place. The sailors managed to salvage the derelict whaler - an eight-metre-long lifeboat - which was peppered with holes and gashes from shrapnel and bullets.

    The Gunnery Officer, Lieutenant Lloyd Palmer, left with 29 men in the patched-up boat to try to get help and nine harrowing days after the sinking they were sighted by an RAAF plane and rescued by HMAS Kalgoorlie.

    Fate dealt cruelly to the 47 men left behind on the raft. On the eighth day after the sinking, a RAAF Catalina flying boat sighted them, but could not land because the sea was too rough. The airmen dropped food and water to them, but despite searches by the Catalina, Hudsons and Beaufighters they were never seen again. Somehow or other, fate snatched them away just when they thought they were about to be rescued.

    #2
    Hello Aussiess, welcome to CaptainsForum, I know you'll enjoy yourself here. It's addictive, I can tell you!
    I was very interested to read the story of your distant relative Teddy Sheean, how incredibly brave but how tragic that he should die in such a manner. Your family must be so proud of him.
    I don't know whether you know about another wartime tragedy, that of the HMAS Sydney? When in WA 3 years ago I saw the beautiful memorial at Geraldton and was very moved at the story. You may like to read my thread about it here
    I've also just started relating my adventure in the Pilbara at my thread in "The World, Pilot Guides". I've loads of pics. for that so it will take me quite a while......
    Meanwhile, have fun.
    Ivy

    "To thine own self be true.......
    Thou canst not then be false to any man."

    Comment


      #3
      Hallo Wherrygirl,Thanks for the welcome.

      Not only they are proud of his efforts,an Australian sub was name after him for his efforts during that battle. That was very exciting to me but more exciting for his blood related relatives. Thanks for taking some to to read the story.

      I read you're HMAS Sydney thread,this is why I was inspired to create my thread. Months ago,I saw on the news that they found the ship wreck 'HMAS' Sydney and honored the fallen by laying reefs, I don't think many survived at all?

      Gonna have to check that one out,sounds good.Sounds like you are an out door girl...I need to get out more.

      I was very interested to read the story of your distant relative Teddy Sheean, how incredibly brave but how tragic that he should die in such a manner. Your family must be so proud of him.
      I don't know whether you know about another wartime tragedy, that of the HMAS Sydney? When in WA 3 years ago I saw the beautiful memorial at Geraldton and was very moved at the story. You may like to read my thread about it here
      I've also just started relating my adventure in the Pilbara at my thread in "The World, Pilot Guides". I've loads of pics. for that so it will take me quite a while......

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by aussiess View Post
        Hallo Wherrygirl,Thanks for the welcome.


        I read you're HMAS Sydney thread,this is why I was inspired to create my thread. Months ago,I saw on the news that they found the ship wreck 'HMAS' Sydney and honored the fallen by laying reefs, I don't think many survived at all?

        Gonna have to check that one out,sounds good.Sounds like you are an out door girl...I need to get out more.
        No, you're right, Aussiess, not one of the men on board the Sydney survived. That is the mystery which I don't suppose will ever be solved now.
        By the way, I'm Ivy to my friends.
        Ivy

        "To thine own self be true.......
        Thou canst not then be false to any man."

        Comment

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