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Naval Obituaries A collection of notes on those who have crossed the bar.

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Old 20-10-2009, 17:03
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Default Admiral of the Fleet Sir George E. Creasy

Sir George Creasy

Admiral of the Fleet Sir George E. Creasy, GCB, CBE, DSO, MVO, who died on Tuesday 31st October 1972 at the age of 77, had a distinguished career, alike in staff and command service, which was remarkable for its variety. Though he had never before commanded a destroyer, he was a successful flotilla captain. Not long after being Director of Anti-Submarine Warfare during critical stages of the Battle of the Atlantic, concerned with the destruction of enemy U-boats, he became Head of the British Submarine Service, responsible for the extension and development of under-water craft. Though he had never been directly associated with naval aviation, he was Flag Officer (Air) in the Far East. He was Chief Staff Officer to the Allied Naval Commander in the invasion of Europe and after the war held more than one appointment on the Board of Admiralty.

George Elvey Creasy, the son of Leonard Creasy, was born on October 13, 1895. He entered the Navy as a cadet at Osborne in. 1908, was at Dartmouth from 1910 to 1912, and passed out from the training cruiser Cornwall the following year. He served in the Grand Fleet and took part in the operations in the Heligoland Bight in 1917. After serving as Assistant Director of Plans at the Admiralty in 1936-38, he took command of the Grenville and the lst Destroyer Flotilla, Mediterranean. This was his command during the early months of the Second World War. The Grenville returned to join the Home Fleet, and after she was sunk by a U-boat in January, 1940, he transferred to the Codrington. In this ship he brought to England Princess Juliana and her family after the invasion of Holland in May, 1940, and afterwards took part in the evacuation from Dunkirk. For two years from September, 1940, he was Director of the Anti-Submarine Warfare Division of the Naval Staff, and in 1942-43 commanded the battleship Duke of York. He was promoted. to Rear-Admiral in July, 1943. His next appointment, was as chief staff officer to Admiral Sir Alexander Ramsay for the planning and execution of the naval operations for the Allied landing in Normandy in June, 1944. Three months later he was appointed Rear-Admiral (Submarines) and held the, post for a period, which saw the end of the war and the surrender of the German U- boats.

It was a tribute to his all round capacity that from submarines he turned to aircraft, taking up, in 1947, the post of Flag; Officer, Aircraft Carriers and Air Stations, British Pacific Fleet and East Indies. In 1948, he was promoted Vice-Admiral. Eight months later he succeeded Admiral Sir Philip Vian as Fifth Sea Lord and Deputy Chief of Naval Staff (Air), and in 1949, was transferred to another post on the Admiralty Board, that of Vice-Chief of the Naval Staff. He I was C-in-C Home Fleet from 1952 to 1954 and also C-in-C Eastern Atlantic under NATO. From 1954 to 1957 he was C-in-C Portsmouth and also C-in-C Home Station designate and Allied C-in-C Channel Command under NATO. In 1959 he was appointed. A Deputy Lieutenant for Essex. He married in 1924 Monica eldest daughter of Wilfred Ullathorne and had one son.

Taken from the Times Archive
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The moment shortly after dawn on 24th May 1941 when HMS Hood, in company with HMS Prince of Wales, opens fire on the Bismarck, setting in motion one of the greatest sea dramas the world had seen.

HMS Hood Engages Bismarck by Ivan Berryman (AP)
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One of the finest battleships of all time, Bismarck was built by the Blohm and Voss shipyard in Hamburg and launched in February 1939.  Her first duty was for commerce raiding in the north Atlantic.  Together with the heavy cruiser Prinz Eugen, the destroyers Z10, Z16 and Z23 and a minesweeper.  The Bismarck, commanded by Vice Admiral Gunther Lutjens, left her last anchorage at Grimstadt Fjord in Norway.  Once Bismarcks departure was confirmed all available British forces were deployed to meet the threat.  On the 24th of May 1941 the Bismarck sailed into naval history - sinking the battlescruiser and pride of the British fleet - HMS Hood.  But Bismarck would have little time to celebrate, she was sunk by a scorned British fleet three days later.  Here Bismarck is depicted on the evening of the 21st May 1941 entering the open sea on her fateful final voyage.

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B103.  HMS Royal Sovereign and HMS Warspite departing Malta by Ivan Berryman.

HMS Royal Sovereign and HMS Warspite departing Malta by Ivan Berryman
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 In the evening of 18th of July 1941, Alex Thom took off in his No.87 Sqn Hurricane to intercept an enemy aircraft, spotted off the Scilly Isles.  Attacking the enemy Heinkel He111 at an altitude of 1000 feet, his windscreen became covered in oil from the damaged machine.  His wingman F/O Roscoe then also made an attack on the Heinkel, and it descended to sea level, eventually crash landing on the surface.  Thom circled the downed aircraft as the crew hastily took to their dinghy before the Heinkel sank.

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