On This Day
1940 > WW2
On This Day - 1940
- October 12, 1940
HMAS SYDNEY, (cruiser), was paer of a force that sank the Italian destroyer ARTIGLIERE.
- October 2, 1940
HMAS SYDNEY, and HMS ORION, (cruisers), bombarded Italian defences on the port of Maltazana, Dodecanese Islands.
- September 30, 1940
HMAS STUART, (destroyer), and Sunderland flying boat L2166, participated in the sinking of the Italian submarine GONDAR, which was on its way to Alexandria with three human torpedoes on board.
The auxiliary anti-submarine vessel HMAS KYBRA, was commissioned. KYBRA was laid down in the Coastal Construction Co, Montrose, Scotland, and launched on 13 January 1926. She was requisitioned for the RAN in 1940. KYBRA was the first small ship of the RAN to be fitted with radar and became a Radar Training Ship.
- September 29, 1940
ADML A.B. Cunningham, C-in-C, Mediterranean, signalled the Battle Fleet: “STUART is dying on us. I am sending her back to Alex”. The ‘dying’ HMAS STUART, (destroyer), shared in the sinking of the Italian submarine GONDAR, before she reached port.
HMA Ships CANBERRA, and SHROPSHIRE, (cruisers), operated in the Indian ocean searching for the German ship ADMIRAL SCHEER, (pocket battleship). Serving in SHROPSHIRE was HRH MIDN Prince Philip of Greece, later to become Admiral of the Fleet, the Duke of Edinburgh.
- September 28, 1940
HMAS AUSTRALIA, (cruiser), was directed to return to Britain from the Mediterranean
- September 27, 1940
The boom working vessel HMAS KANGAROO, was commissioned. KANGAROO was laid down in Cockatoo Island Dockyard, Sydney, on 15 November 1939, and launched on 4 May 1940. Mrs Boucher, (Wife of CDRE M. W. S. BOUCHER, RN, Second Member of the Naval Board), performed the launching ceremony
- September 26, 1940
CAPT H. L. Waller, RAN, (CAPT(D) 10th destroyer flotilla), transferred his flag to HMAS VAMPIRE, (destroyer), whilst HMAS STUART, (destroyer), underwent a refit at Malta
- September 25, 1940
HMAS SYDNEY, (cruiser), patrolled south of Cyprus with HMS PROTECTOR, in search of a Vichy French transport bound for Beirut.
Two shells from the French Ship RICHELIEU, (battleship), struck HMAS AUSTRALIA, (cruiser), during a bombardment of French units in Dakar. AUSTRALIA lost her Walrus amphibian, which was shot down, and lost with its crew.
- September 24, 1940
HMAS AUSTRALIA, (cruiser), fired on two battleships and a cruiser in Dakar. The enemy cruiser was observed to be hit and caught fire. During the day AUSTRALIA’S Seagull amphibian was shot down by Vichy French Curtiss Hawk 75A aircraft, and was seen to crash into the sea. The three crew members of the Walrus were Flight Lieutenant George John Isaiah Clarke (P) RAAF; Lieutenant Commander Francis Kevin Fogarty (O) RAN and Petty Officer Colin Kenneth Bunnett (T) RAN. All were posted missing as a result of enemy action and their bodies were never recovered.
- September 23, 1940
HMAS AUSTRALIA, (cruiser), participated in the combined British-Free French attack on French ships at Dakar, Operation Menace. AUSTRALIA engaged two enemy destroyers attempting to leave the port, and drove them back. Later in the day a third destroyer, L’AUDACIEUX, was sighted heading out to sea, and guns from the fleet set her on fire.