Sick Berth Attendant George Golding Gepp (D/MX 553308) served in the Royal Navy during the Second World War. Born on 18th April 1909, he was the son of Frederick George Gepp and Elizabeth Gepp (née Nixon) of 29 Euterpe Street, Belfast.
George died at a Royal Naval base in Sherborne, Dorset on 24th August 1944 aged 35 years old. He was on board H.M.L.S.T. 404 when it came under attack from Gerhard Palmgren’s U-741 at 1635hrs on 15th August 1944. British Corvette H.M.S. Orchis sank the U-boat in the English Channel later the same day. The attack took place around 35 miles southeast of St. Catherine’s Point as H.M.L.S.T. 404 travelled back from Normandy with Convoy FTM-69. Wounded Allied personnel and German prisoners of war were all on board.
The Landing Ship Tank was badly damaged in the attack and the engine room flooded. H.M.L.S.T. 413 pulled alongside and took on many of the passengers and crew landing them in Portsmouth, Hampshire, England. Meanwhile a US Navy Tug U.S.S. ATR-4 brought the stricken Landing Ship Tank to Ryde Sands, the Isle of Wight, and onwards to Lee-on-Solent. The vessel was not salvageable but the Royal Navy cannibalised it and made use of anything they could.
George Golding Gepp’s grave is in Section N2, Grave 546 of Belfast City Cemetery, Belfast, Co. Antrim. His headstone bears the inscription:
Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.