Maritime inquiry 1939 - 1945
The information below regarding ships in the Nortraship fleet is a direct transcript of the original source "Sjøforklaringer fra andre verdenskrig (1940 - 1945)". The informasjon is collected from maritime inquiries held during and right after the war. The information may differ from the other quality assured information in Krigsseilerregisteret.
Report about the S.S. "STARGARD", voyage from Sydney N.S. the 30/8, written according to memory.
Saturday the 30/8-41. At anchor in Sydney harbour. Have about 520 standards deals on board. The hight of the deck cargo:- Forward 15'03", Aft 16'03". The vessel fully manned and in good seaworthy condition.
At 12.00 o'clock lifted anchor and steered out after the convoy. On the way out, the vessel's accounts up to the 30/8 were handed to Captain Tobiassen, Nortraship's representative at Sydney, when his boat came alongside.
During the voyage we steered the convoy courses and were all the time keeping our correct position in the convoy.
The night between 9/9 and 10/9 the convoy was continuously being attacked by U-boats and several vessel were sunk. The weather was calm and moonlit and the sea was smooth.
At about 2 o'clock on the 19/9, during the chief Officer's watch, the "STARGARD" was struck by a torpedo approximately amidships. There was a violent explosion.
Captain L. Larsen and ordinary seaman Walter Keys, who were standing on the bridge, and 2nd Officer H. Jacobsen, who was standing at the after part of the amidships, were thrown into the sea, and we heard them shouting for help.
The vessel heeled heavily over to starboard and sank deeply with the after part of the ship. The bridge deck was torn open and both the port lifeboats were destroyed. The starboard boat (motor) broke the after tackle and became hanging awash in the sea. The whole of the amidships was enveloped in steam. The starboard boat was soon cut loose and, as it was floating, A.B. seaman E. Hansen, ordinary seaman V. Volo and chief Officer M. Bøge swam to and got it in order to go to assistance of the 3 in water.
The Norwegian S.S. "REGIN" took on board 9 men from teh wreck. The other 6 were picked up by a corvette and landed at Reykjavik on the 13/9.
Captein L. Larsen, who had an ankle broken, and ordinary seaman V. Polo as well as ordinary seaman W. Keys were at once taken to Hospital on arrival. 2nd Officer H. Jacobsen slightly injured on the left knee. The Captain's condition is very poor as his back has also been hurt. Neither the ship's papers nor anything else were saved.
M. Bøge, Chief Officer