BORN HULL 20/12/1893. SON OF WILLIAM (1853-1904) & MARY ELIZABETH RAMSTER (1854-1903), OF 62 REDBOURNE STREET, HULL (1901 CENSUS). HE HAD FOUR BROTHERS. LIVED WITH HIS BROTHER, THOMAS, AT 34 GREEK STREET, HULL. WORKED AS A BOILER SHOP, DRILLER APPRENTICE (1911 CENSUS). JOINED THE ROYAL NAVAL RESERVE AS A COAL TRIMMER.
HE DIED AT SEA, ON THE TRAWLER ‘OTHELLO II’, WITH SEVEN OTHER CREW, WHEN THEIR SHIP HIT A MINE, ON 31/10/1915.
HE IS COMMEMORATED ON THE CHATHAM NAVAL MEMORIAL.
H.M. Trawler “Othello II” was built 1907 by Cook, Welton & Gemmell, Ltd., Beverley . (Peace-time operator: Hellyer Steam Fishing Co. Ltd., Hull) 100ft, 206 ton. Launched 1907. Port No H956 Sunk by mine off Dover, laid by the German coastal mine laying submarine UC-6 under the command of Matthias Graf von Schmettow.
HMT Othello II was part of the Dover Patrol Admiralty Trawlers and was part of the Minesweeper force and sent to Patrol an area between the Goodwin Gate and the Gull Lightship on the 31st October 1915. As she battled her way out to the site against a strong gale from the SSE, at 1155 am she hit a mine laid by UC-6. The mine detonated amidships the explosion caused extensive damage to her port side amidships and distorted the cabin door and wheel-house windows that neither doors or windows would open so much as they could be opened.
The second-hand, skipper and helmsman in the wheelhouse managed to squeeze and push the cabin boy out of through a window opening but they could not follow and went down with the ship. He was the only survivor of the ten men onboard. This incident caused all the wooden doors in the Dover Patrol force to be replaced with canvas screens which later saved several lives.