On This Day
1940 > WW2
On This Day - 1940
- November 7, 1940
HMA Ships SYDNEY, (cruiser), VAMPIRE and WATERHEN, (destroyers), landed troops and stores at Suda Bay, Crete.
- November 6, 1940
HMAS SYDNEY, (cruiser), and HMS AJAX, landed troops and equipment at Suda Bay, Crete.
- November 5, 1940
CAPT Edward Stephen Fogarty Fegen, RN, was awarded the VC posthumously for outstanding bravery while commanding the armed merchant cruiser HMS JERVIS BAY, when he engaged the German pocket battleship ADMIRAL SCHEER. His action saved a number of ships of the convoy at the cost of his own ship and his life. CAPT Fegen was Executive Officer of the Royal Australian Naval College from 1928 to 1929.
HMS Ajax and HMAS Sydney departed Port Said for Suda Bay with Headquarters, 14th Infantery Brigade, one light and one heavy AA battery and administrative troops.
- October 30, 1940
HMAS NORMAN, (destroyer), was launched at Thornycroft’s Yard, UK.
- October 29, 1940
HMAS AUSTRALIA, (cruiser), rescued 9 the crew of 13 of a Sunderland flying boat which had force-landed in heavy seas, and gale-force winds, west of the Hebrides. 4 airmen lost their lives. In the rescue, CMDR J. M. Armstrong and 12 ratings were lowered over the cruiser’s side on ropes to snatch the airmen from the sea.
- October 28, 1940
Italy invaded Greece, and Greece joined the Allies. HMA Ships SYDNEY, (cruiser), STUART, VAMPIRE, VENDETTA, VOYAGER, and WATERHEN, (destroyers), were deployed to escort supply convoys to Greece.
W.M. Hughes succeeded A.G. Cameron as Minister for the Navy.
- October 25, 1940
HMAS BURNIE, (minesweeper), was launched at Mort’s Dock, Sydney. BURNIE was transferred to the Royal Netherlands Navy in 1946, and renamed CERAM.
- October 20, 1940
HMAS YARRA and HMS AUCKLAND, (sloops), engaged three Italian destroyers east of Massawa. Later HMS KIMBERLEY, (destroyer), encountered one of the Italian ships, drove it ashore, and destroyed it with torpedoes. The Italian radio announced the loss of the FRANCESCO NULLO.
- October 18, 1940
Navy House opened in Melbourne.
HMAS MARYBOROUGH, (minesweeper), was launched at Walker’s, Maryborough, QLD.
- October 13, 1940
HMAS SYDNEY, (cruiser), stood by while HMS YORK, (cruiser), sank the crippled Italian ship ARTIGLIERE, (destroyer). The enemy vessel was damaged in a night engagement with HMS AJAX, between Malta and Crete. AJAX was attacked by a mixed force of destroyers and torpedo boats, and is credited with the sinking of the large torpedo boats AIRONE and ARIEL, in addition to immobilising the ARTIGLIERE. HMAS VAMPIRE, (destroyer), picked up one officer and twenty-one ratings from the destroyer.