HMAS Parramatta II

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The HMAS Parramatta at sea in 1940
The <i>HMAS Parramatta</i> at sea in 1940

The Royal Australian Navy received the Grimsby Class Sloop following its launching in 1939. She took part in operations against Italian Eritrea, East Africa, in 1941, then transferred to the Mediterranean station, escorting vessels carrying desperately needed supplies to Tobruk in North Africa where Australian soldiers were under siege by the German army led by Rommel. In one action, forty eight dive bombers attacked the ship and her surrounding vessels, yet she successfully defended her charges.

On November 27, 1941 a single torpedo struck amidships tearing the ship apart. One hundred and thirty-eight men, including the Commanding Officer and all nine officers, lost their lives. Only twenty-four of the crew survived.

A memorial service is held on the Sunday close to November 27, in the Queens Wharf Reserve, George Street, Parramatta.

Parramatta Memorial Sub-Section Naval Association of Australia, representatives of HMAS Parramatta IV, Royal Australian Navy and Parramatta & District Historical Society attend.

Trevor Patrick is a local historian of the north-west of Sydney, Australia. His latest book, In Search of the Pennant Hills, recounts some of these stories (and others) in more detail.