TOMLIN, Francis Douglas

C/JX 551439, Able Seaman, Francis Douglas TOMLIN
Aged 18

Royal Fleet Auxiliary "Olga", Royal Navy
Killed in Action on Saturday, 29th January 1944

Francis Douglas TOMLIN was born in Acton on 7th February 1925 (Hammersmith Q1-1925 1A:278) son of Edgar and Winifred Maria TOMLIN (née EVANS). The family appear to have moved to Balsham before the birth of his sister Hilary Grace in 1932.

In the 1939 register at 2 Council Houses, West Wickham Road, Balsham were his parents Edgar [20-8-1905] a plumber; Winifred Mary [18-9-1904]; sisters Winifred Mary [8-10-1928] later BUTLER, then WALKER and Hilary G [26-10-1932] later VINCENT and Cecil PLUMB [29-12-1902]. There are 3 closed records

The S.S."Olga" originally S.S. "Olga E Embiricos", 4,600 tons, built 1922 in South Shields as "British Believer" and owned by C.E.Embiricoa of Andros. Taken over by the Royal Navy as a Fleet Auxiliary (collier) and carrying a Royal Navy gun crew on DEMS duties (Defensively Equiped Merchant Ship). In this instance she had 4 gunners.

Laden with nearly 7,000 tons of coal she was en route from Durban to Aden when attacked by U-boat U-188 with one torpedo (Kaitan Leutnant Siegfried Lüudden at 12.3 N: 50.10 E. 20 of the crew of 41 were lost (including two of the Royal Navy men). On 30 January, the survivors were picked up by the British steam merchant "Dramatist" that had been in the same convoy (CB-7) and were taken to Aden.

photo: Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Francis Tomlin is commemorated on the Chatham Naval Memorial, panel 76 col.1

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

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