HMAS ‘Canberra’ crew honoured

Commodore James Gilmore, representing New Zealand defence forces, prepares to lay a wreath in the...
Commodore James Gilmore, representing New Zealand defence forces, prepares to lay a wreath in the water.
Australian veteran Bill Quinn (94) walks to  the stern of HMAS Success to put a wreath into the sea.
Australian veteran Bill Quinn (94) walks to the stern of HMAS Success to put a wreath into the sea.
A sailor on HMAS Success throws a cross representing one of the lives lost on HMAS Canberra.
A sailor on HMAS Success throws a cross representing one of the lives lost on HMAS Canberra.

Australia's worst wartime naval disaster was remembered on Wednesday  on the 75th anniversary of the sinking of HMAS Canberra.

Canberra went down near Savo Island in the Solomon Islands on August 9, 1942, with the loss of 84 men, including the captain. A further 109 were wounded.

At the site of the sinking, where Canberra lies 700m below the surface, wreaths were dropped from HMAS Success  by the Solomon Islands Prime Minister, Manasseh Sogavare, and Governor-General Sir Frank Kabui, naval personnel from Australia, New Zealand and the United States, as well as diplomats, including  New Zealand High Commissioner Don Higgins. Australia’s oldest veteran of the Guadalcanal battle, Bill Quinn (94), who served on HMAS Australia, also put a wreath into the water.

Sailors from Success then put into the water 84 small wooden crosses — one for each  life  lost. The crosses were made by Australian schoolchildren.

The ceremony marked the end of the 75th anniversary commemorations of the Battle of Guadalcanal from August 1942 to February 1943.

Add a Comment

Our journalists are your neighbours

We are the South's eyes and ears in crucial council meetings, at court hearings, on the sidelines of sporting events and on the frontline of breaking news.

As our region faces uncharted waters in the wake of a global pandemic, Otago Daily Times continues to bring you local stories that matter.

We employ local journalists and photographers to tell your stories, as other outlets cut local coverage in favour of stories told out of Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

You can help us continue to bring you local news you can trust by becoming a supporter.

Become a Supporter