HMAS Sydney

Karen Christl

Member
May 3, 2012
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hi robbie! great link, i had a great uncle on the HMAS SYDNEY, my father used to tell me abut him, i finally tracked him down, & was shocked to see that he was only 18 when he died.it's one thing to hear about it in school, or research it for yourself, but when you have a relative ( even if you never met him) that died it brings it so much closer to home
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kaz
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Mikael Jonsson

Guest
Hi Australien people.

I am Swedish, but I have a friend who lives in Brisbane. This summer he was on Frazer Island and photographed this shipwreck. Do you know anything about it? He didn't know anything more than that it was very famous in Australia.
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Mikael
 

Dave Moran

Member
Apr 23, 2002
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146
Robbie

Thank you very much - the loss of HMAS Sydney is of perennial interest to me, yet I did not notice the publication of this report.

Cheers
 

Dave Moran

Member
Apr 23, 2002
253
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146
Dear Robbie

Having looked through the report I see that there are many recommendations - locate the wrecks, locate the body of that poor man on Christmas Island, and erect a memorial to the ship supplemental to those already existing. Do you know if any of these recommendations have been put into effect ?

Regards

dave
 

Dave Gittins

Member
Apr 11, 2001
4,956
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Dave M. there has been no serious attempt to find the wrecks. Somebody claimed to have some wonderful new method for locating them but nothing came of it. As nobody has a clue where the wreck of Sydney lies, it's a pretty hopeless job, much harder than the search for Titanic.

I've not heard about a new monument.

The search for the alleged victim on Christmas Island failed. The story is well down the page at this site.

http://www.asacaustralia.com/whatsnew/2001.htm
 

Dave Moran

Member
Apr 23, 2002
253
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On the warships1 board I have had several discussions over the whole affair, and I remember the gentleman who claimed to have a new method of locating the wreck... and it was generally agreed by some of the learned gentlemen who posted on thos forums that the guy was being either incredibly optimistic or economical with the actualite...
 
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Robbie Tresham

Guest
Dave M and Dave G : I still find it bewildering going through records and archives, especially when you read such claims that HMAS Sydney was towed to Tokyo. Do either of you know if the Kormoran documents and survivors evidence is available online? By the way I have seen the memorial in Geraldton and I found it most impressive and fitting.
 
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Robbie Tresham

Guest
I found a video clip from British Pathe news of HMAS Sydney in port, July 25, 1940. She had just returned from sinking an Italian cruiser "Bartolomeo Colleoni" You can download the clip free of charge. Just enter HMAS Sydney in the database search.
http://www.britishpathe.com
cheers friends
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Inger Sheil

Member
Dec 3, 2000
5,342
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Nowp, Kaz.

The HMAS Sydney under discussion was an ex-RN ship (HMS Phoebe).

The first HMAS Sydney had an altogether happier career, the highlight of which was Australia's first victorious naval engagement when she brought the Emden to bay in the Cocos Islands. She was paid off in 1928 and scrapped in 1929.

Here's a site which gives a brief overview of their respective careers:

http://www.navy.gov.au/fleet/ffg03sydney/predec.htm
 
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Trevor William Sturdy

Guest
Hi Michael,
I did catch this on the news a week or 2 ago, hopefully this gentleman can be identified. I am sure his family would appreciate the opportunity to lay him to rest....
Regards.
Trev.
 

Inger Sheil

Member
Dec 3, 2000
5,342
34
208
Hallo Michael -

Yes, I caught the news item (we're keeping an eye on the various projects looking for HMAS Sydney).

One of the most poignant aspects of the story was the eagerness of some of the families interviewed who had lost someone on the ship - each were hoping that the body might prove to be their boy. Many have volunteered what records they have - e.g. dental - and DNA samples. The chances have to be slim of identifying him if he is from the Sydney - and even if he is identified, there will be disappointment for the majority. Still, if even one family could have their lost son restored to them, it would be worth the effort.

Beautiful place, Christmas Island. I hope to visit and dive there one day - perhaps taking in the Cocos Keeling Islds on the same trip.
 

Dave Moran

Member
Apr 23, 2002
253
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146
Oh thanks - I missed that.

Is Christmas Island near the Cocos Islands, Inger ? If so, that's even more resonat given that HMAS Sydney of 1914 sunk the Emden there
 

Michael Byrne

Member
Oct 11, 2006
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Interesting - but I've never really subscribed to the Jap-sub theory, but it'll certainly be very interesting to see what the results of the bullet ballistics indicate though.

I'm surprised the initial 1942 examination of the body missed a gunshot wound to the head, which kinda leads me to suspect that perhaps they may have the wrong body? And thus, if the bullet DOES turn out to be Japanese, we should need positive proof that the body is fact, actually that of the 1942 sailor as it's possible the body is of some poor person killed by the Japs during their wartime occupation of Christmas island.

Having said all that, if we do have the correct body, a bullet in the head of a shipwreck survivor on a Carley float can only have a limited number of explanations.... either he WAS shot in the water as the 'Japanese Sub' theorists speculate, or perhaps (long shot) the poor sailor, delirious and near death through dehydration and starvation chose to take his own life..... bullet type will tell, as will any entry/exit wound dynamics that can be deduced from the skull.