Athenia (1923)
Message Board

July 9, 2016

Below is a photo of my grandfather's life jacket. He was a survivor from the Athenia when it was torpedoed in 1939. It is signed by other survivors, as well. Amazing piece of history. 

Diane McShane Norton

Feb. 1, 2014

Mr. Don Wilcox (87) passed away last fall in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. He was 14 and onboard Athenia with his mother returning from the UK when the ship was sunk. He was a widower when he passed and he volunteered with Canada's Naval Memorial which looks after the last corvette, HMCS SACKVILLE. After their rescue, they were returned to the UK and didn't leave until the last opportunity in May 1940. Don was an accomplished ham operator and a fine individual who I got to know well. He will
be missed.

Bill Gard
Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada

Mar. 16, 2011

I just came across your site on the Internet.  I was doing a search about the S.S. Athenia, the passenger ship which was sunk in 1939 by a German U-boat.

Let me explain why I am writing you. 

Just yesterday I went onto my Facebook page and seen that a friend of mine had just posted a 'Thank You' message to all the people who recently attended a Memorial service for her father, Jim Gordon, who died this past January.  Of course I was just finding out about her fathers passing by reading this 'Thank You' message on Facebook.  I have not seen her father in many years but remember him well.  I decided to do a Google search on Jim Gordon's obituary and what I found out had staggered me.  While reading his obituary it mentioned that when he was 8-years-old both he and his mother were aboard the S.S. Athenia when the ship was sunk on September 3, 1939.  It also mentioned that both he and his mother were in the Atlantic Ocean for three days before being rescued and that he was the last known survivor of the S.S. Athenia.  I was not aware of that this particular incident had ever occurred until I read Jim's obituary.  Having an interest in World War II, my curiosity has gotten to me since I read of Jim's passing, and have been doing as much reading on the sinking of the Athenia as I could find.  I just thought that you might like to know about his passing to mention on your web site since he was the last know survivor of the Athenia.

Here is a link to Jim's obituary.


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Page published Sept. 3, 2008