Download e-book for iPad: A Leaf upon the Sea: A Small Ship in the Mediterranean, by Gordon W. Stead

By Gordon W. Stead

ISBN-10: 0774802995

ISBN-13: 9780774802994

The Mediterranean Sea in global conflict II was once the scene of lengthy and violent naval conflict among the British and the Axis powers, Italy and Germany. The tales of the main squadrons and their admirals were advised, as their activities led on to the results. this is the story of the smallest floor ships, their officials and males who, on the very tip of British sea strength in that disputed sea, performed very important roles in making attainable the successes of the extra recognized forces. it truly is instructed through certainly one of them -- a Canadian on mortgage to the Royal army who took a number one half from the bottom ebb in British fortunes throughout the fight opposed to nearly overwhelming odds to the climax of the 1st landings at the continent of Europe.

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From being at the bottom of the list for dockyard help, I suddenly found myself, as SO of a pair of lowly MLs, with priority even over the battle squadron, although security required this to be handled with discretion. " Not everybody got the buzz. When I went to the sail loft with our drawings of the odd-shaped bits of canvas needed to carry the line of our bridge wings aft to the funnel, as in our Italian model, the foreman was suspicious that it was for some private purpose. " he said. " this time with some annoyance.

We went to our assigned berth at Flagstaff Steps in the heart of the dockyard where I went ashore to "make my number," as the naval term had it, to Captain (D) Plymouth — the "D" for the destroyers of the port force which, with auxiliary vessels, he commanded. For the next two months 126 was Captain (D)'s duty boat. We ran errands up and down the coast, searched for downed airmen, added to the screen of coastal convoys escorted by somewhat casual trawlers, and towed targets for destroyers working up after dockyard refits.

The process was repeated with the other three destroyers and each of the seven MLs. It was more touchy with the MLs, which were yawing wildly under tow, gave no lee to speak of, and bounced unpredictably like the corks they were, but the bread all got delivered. Once it was found it could be done, the routine was repeated several times with bread or other stores. I was becoming confident in my ship-handling. The real test was to come. A seaman in one ML fell down a hatch and broke his arm, and I was told off to pick him up and put him aboard Firedrake, which had a surgeon and a proper sickbay.

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A Leaf upon the Sea: A Small Ship in the Mediterranean, 1941-1943 by Gordon W. Stead


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