The Loss of HMT Awatea, 11 November 1942

Discussion in 'The War at Sea' started by davidbfpo, Nov 23, 2021.

  1. davidbfpo

    davidbfpo Patron Patron

    This ship was a fast civilian passenger ship from New Zealand, crossing the Tasman Sea and became a WW2 troopship.

    Thanks to a pointer to a BCHM presentation soon by Dr Daniel Lear entitled 'The Non-sailing of RMS Awatea in July 1940 and the New Zealand War Histories. A Disremembered Event' I looked to see what happened. His 2020 PhD is on a wider theme: New Zealand’s Politico-Military Leadership and the War in the Mediterranean Theatre, 1938 to May 1943; available for free via:

    The ship does appear briefly in a few threads and one is quoted later.

    HMT Awatea took part in transporting two UK Commandos, Nos. 1 & 6, for Operation Torch, disembarking troops at Bougie (east of Algiers, now Bejaia) when she was heavily attacked from the air as she returned to sea. Having fought them off, a second wave of bombers sank her. A short account of the Commando landing: No. 6 Commando - Wikipedia

    More details on a New Zealand website in 2010, with contemporary account plus the medals etc awarded and some more sources: There is a short Wiki: HMT Awatea - Wikipedia

    From a 2009 post has details of the DSO awarded to the ship's Captain (Post 134 lightly edited):
    Link: Merchant Navy awards
    Andreas and Hugh MacLean like this.

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