95 YEARS AGO November 1916

John Clifford

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Nov 12, 2000
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I was reminded that today, November 21st (it is still the 21st here in Southern California), marks the 95th Anniversary of the loss of HMHS Britannic.

To BRITANNIC: RIP. It is sad that you never got to see the Trans-Atlantic Service that RMS OLYMPIC did.

To the poor souls lost in November 1916: "Rest In Peace".
 
Apr 27, 2003
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Hello John - I am pleased to see that I am not alone in remembering the loss of the Britannic.
I was in our local Stoneham, Southampton Cemetery recently and I paid my respects to the young Britannic victim.
Here is a little article that I did for a local society:

SOME years ago while looking for Titanic victims at South Stoneham Cemetery, Swaythling, Southampton (Note: this was in the days before the records were computerised) I espied the letters IC peeping out from an overgrown grave (pictured below) - I pulled the grass back to discover the word Britannic (sister ship of the Titanic) and the inscription:
In Loving Memory of Arthur Dennis who lost his life on
HMHS Britannic.
The inscription is on one side of the family grave and his mother Emily, father Arthur, and grandmother are also remembered - tragically for the family there is another inscription on the opposite side which states:

Edwin Dennis Accidentally killed in Egypt August 2nd 1919
After 3 Years Service
so the family lost both sons.
HMHS Britannic struck a German mine on 21st November 1916 and sank in the Kea Channel off the Greek Island of Kea, with the loss of 30 lives Arthur Dennis among them.
Young Arthur (aged 20 years) was employed as a Trimmer (shovelling and moving coal) on board - a very hot very dirty and very physical job - there is no record of how he actually met his death.
Four of the 30 men who perished were buried on the 22nd November 1916 in the Piraeus Municipal Cemetery at Drapetsona I am reliably informed that today the cemetery is very well kept and looked after.
The other 26 who perished (seven from Southampton) were, presumably, picked up by British ships with the right refrigeration facilities and brought home, and buried in various cemeteries - but I cannot prove it.
Arthur Dennis was no stranger to Stoneham Cemetery as his address was given as Number 2 Mansbridge Cottages, Swaythling, Southampton - the cottages (which overlook the cemetery) are still in existence today and provide lovely secluded homes with the Second Chance Animal Shelter and a disused Reservoir to the rear.
I have been unable to find out what Service Edwin Dennis served in - I can only presume it was the Merchant Navy. The grave at Stoneham is situated by the Chapel of Rest and if you stand outside looking towards West End you will see it on the left. Happily the grave now shows signs of attention with a recently placed little Poppy Wreath and there were some old Red Roses in the vase - so the whole family is still remembered by someone.
Best regards Brian

PS Sorry but the picture has just disappeared!
 

Jack Richards

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Jan 23, 2011
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Here you go Brian to complete your information.

From the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website (www.cwgc.org):

E Dennis, Sapper, Royal Engineers, Railway Operating Div., Age 21, Date of death 02/08/1919, Son of Mrs Emily Dennis of 2 Mansbridge Cottages, Swaythling, Southampton, Hants., Kantara War Memorial Cemetery, Egypt.

Regards
Jack
 

Adam Went

Member
Apr 28, 2003
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Indeed it is! I'm pleased that the milestone has been remembered as there are so many to reflect upon throughout the year that it's quite easy to let them slip the mind.

Thinking of the Britannic today, and RIP to those who were lost with her.

Cheers,
Adam.