Ships hit by U-boats

Walter Q. Gresham

American Steam merchant

NameWalter Q. Gresham
Type:Steam merchant (Liberty)
Tonnage7,191 tons
Completed1943 - Delta Shipbuilding Co, New Orleans LA 
OwnerStandard Fruit & Steamship Co, New Orleans LA 
HomeportNew Orleans 
Date of attack18 Mar 1943Nationality:      American
FateSunk by U-221 (Hans-Hartwig Trojer)
Position53° 35'N, 28° 05'W - Grid AK 6897
Complement70 (28 dead and 42 survivors).
RouteSantiago - New York - Clyde 
Cargo10,000 tons of general cargo, including powdered milk and sugar 
History Completed in February 1943 
Notes on event

At 16.43 hours on 18 March 1943, U-221 hit the Walter Q. Gresham in station #21 of convoy HX-229 with a stern shot and sank her southeast of Cape Farewell. At 16.49 hours, one FAT and two standard torpedoes were fired. The FAT missed and detonated at the end of its run, while the other two struck the Canadian Star in station #23, which sank in 15 minutes.

The Walter Q. Gresham (Master Byron Wade Miller) on her maiden voyage was hit on the port side at #5 hold. The explosion opened a huge hole, destroyed the quarters of the gun crew on the fantail and carried away the propeller. The eight officers, 34 crewmen, 26 armed guards (the ship was armed with one 5in, one 3in and eight 20mm guns) and two passengers abandoned ship in three lifeboats (one boat had been lost in heavy seas on 15 March) and two rafts, but one of the boat capsized on launch. The ship sank by the stern about one hour after the attack. Five officers, 18 crewmen and five armed guards were lost, most of them from drowning. The survivors were picked up within 3 hours by HMS Pennywort (K 111) (Lt O.G. Stuart, RCNVR) and HMS Anemone (K 48) (LtCdr P.G.A. King, RNR) and landed at Gourock.

On boardWe have details of 68 people who were on board

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