C/M37726, Petty Officer Sick Berth Attendant, Harry Munro HAWKINS
Aged 37


H.M.S. Curacao, Royal Navy
Died on Active Service on Friday 2nd October 1942


Certamine summo: 'In the midst of battle'
Born on 13th March 1905 [Newmarket 3b:481], the 2nd son of Headmaster, Alfred William and Harriett Charlotte HAWKINS (née HODGKINSON), of All Saint's School House, Vicarage Road, Newmarket.
In Q4-1929 he was married, in Kent, to Florence Margaret Louise McCLUSKER. They had been living at 95 Hamilton Road, Gillingham, Kent. Florence later moved to 'Wintona', Warrington Street, Newmarket.

In the 1939 register, at 22 Sturdee Avenue, Gillingham, Kent were Harry (on leave from Chatham Barracks), his wife Florence [18-8-1904] and her parents Ralph [20-12-1876] paymaster Lieut Royal Navy (retd) and Florence [27-2-1880], there is one closed record.
At Wintona, Warrington Street, Newmarket were his widowed mother Harriett C [16-9-1869] a retired school teacher; his sister in law Emily SA [19-5-1900] and her daughter Margaret [18-5-1931](later DUNSIRE) there is one closed record.


The Royal Navy Anti Aircraft Cruiser HMS Curacoa was escorting the RMS Queen Mary, which was carrying 15,000 United States troops onboard, and sailing ahead of her. They were close to the Irish coast, and the Queen Mary was zigzagging to avoid German U-boats. The Queen Mary collided with HMS Curacoa at a speed of about 28 knots and cut her in half. The Curacoa sank with 338 casualties. (28 survivors) 50.50N 8.38W.
16 casualties were taken to the Isle of Skye and buried in Ashaig Cemetery

The enquiry which would normally follow such an incident was delayed as not being likely to be in the public interest. However, the Cunard Shipping Company made an interim payment to the dependants of all those lost through this collision of £40, and after the war, an official enquiry held that the linerís Captain was entirely to blame for this great loss of life, and a further payment of £300 was made to each dependant.


H.M.S. Curacao .................................... R.M.S. Queen Mary



photo of grave for H M Hawkins
H M Hawkins grave monument
(www.gravestonephotos.com)


Harry's grave is in 2nd row, 2nd from left here


Harry is buried on Ashaig Cemetery, Isle of Skye, Scotland Ref- R.4


click here to go to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website for full cemetery/memorial details


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