Able Seaman Samuel Rutherford Morrison (D/JX 198134) served in the Royal Navy during World War Two. He was the son of Mr. and Mrs. William Morrison. He was the husband of Kathleen Morrison of Maymore, Toye, Killyleagh, Co. Down.
Able Seaman Morrison died on 18th October 1941 aged 29 years old on board HMS Broadwater (H81) in the North Atlantic. Ernst Mengersen’s U-101 sank the 1,190-ton Town-class destroyer leaving 56 dead and 85 survivors.
HMS Broadwater was one of 50 older destroyers handed over to the Royal Navy by the United States Navy on 8th October 1940. This was in exchange for use of British bases in the Caribbean. It completed as USS Mason (DD191) in February 1920 at Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Co. in Newport News, Virginia.
Sinking of HMS Broadwater
On the night of 17th-18th October 1941, U-101 attempted to overtake convoy SC-48 to the south of Iceland. After several approached over three hours, U-101 launched 4 torpedoes at HMS Broadwater at 0420hrs. Broadwater lost its bow after a torpedo struck the starboard side forward of the bridge.
Three trawlers went to assist the Broadwater; HMS Angle (FY201), HMS Cape Warwick (FY167), HMS St. Apollo. German U-Boat U-77 investigated the scene but left the scene after firing an unsuccessful torpedo at 0633hrs.
Rescuing the men of HMS Broadwater was difficult due to increasing wind at sea. Some of the crew remained on board believing they could save the ship. Only as day broke, did a crack across the deck confirm the ship was unsalvageable.
HMS Angle rescued 60 men, transferring 7 to HMS Cape Warwick. This included Broadwater’s commander and chief engineer. HMS Cape Warwick picked up a further 28 men at 1420hrs before both ships made their way to port in Derry City, Co. Londonderry. HMS St. Apollo remained by the Broadwater wreck until it sank bow first with a starboard list into the North Atlantic waters.
Samuel Rutherford Morrison’s name is on Panel 48, Column 1 of the Plymouth Naval Memorial, Plymouth, Devon, United Kingdom. His name lives on in his hometown on the Killyleagh War Memorial, Killyleagh, Co. Down.