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Article: Life Story of a Merchant Navy Electrician - Noel Murray

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    Life Story of a Merchant Navy Electrician - Noel Murray

    11 Comments by Brian Probetts (Site Admin) Published on 2nd April 2018 10:30 PM
    Hi, my dad, Noel Murray, was a merchant navy electrician from 1958 to 1982.
    He died in 2014 but wrote his life story which Iíve now published as a blog.
    It could be of interest to anyone with an interest in life at sea in that period.

    https://williamnoelmurray.wordpress.com/

    Dave Murray.

    Brian Probetts (site admin)
    R760142

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    Default Re: Life Story of a Merchant Navy Electrician - Noel Murray

    This is one excellent story of your Dad , Dave and I thank you for it.
    I have only just started reading a few Chapters and already engrossed in it!
    He had a long and interesting career at Sea! He stood so proud in that Doorway in his Merchant Navy Uniform.
    It will take some time to read in full,but I will get there .
    Thanks once again
    Cheers
    Last edited by Doc Vernon; 3rd April 2018 at 12:40 AM.
    Senior Member and Friend of this Website

    R697530

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    Default Re: Life Story of a Merchant Navy Electrician - Noel Murray

    Thanks for posting this.

    Very interesting and a great tribute to Noel.

    Regards Keith.

    .
    Last edited by Keith at Tregenna; 3rd April 2018 at 01:03 AM.
    "Our veterans did not forget about us .... Let's not forget about them." From Michael Levesque

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    Default Re: Life Story of a Merchant Navy Electrician - Noel Murray

    Enjoying the read very much. Your Dad had an interesting life.
    I wrote my own Autobiography for my kids, but was then encouraged to publish it through Create Space, an Amazon off-shoot.
    see www.amazon.com/author/desmiley
    David

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    Default Re: Life Story of a Merchant Navy Electrician - Noel Murray

    Hi Brian, How can I get to read Murray's story. Thanks Garry Larsen

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    Default Re: Life Story of a Merchant Navy Electrician - Noel Murray

    "Our veterans did not forget about us .... Let's not forget about them." From Michael Levesque

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    Default Re: Life Story of a Merchant Navy Electrician - Noel Murray

    thank you for the link and sharing - its fascinating reading - i have only just began respects

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    Default Re: Life Story of a Merchant Navy Electrician - Noel Murray

    Enjoyed the story of Walney Island,
    My roots are there,
    My grand parents lived in Vickerstown and mother and her sisters went to the same school,
    Grandad worked at Vickers ship yardm and drank in the Ferry Inn, One day he won the Calcutta Sweep in the Ferry Inn, the Landlord refused to pay him his winnings and said he could have it over the bar instead, Two weeks later he was dead of the drink, on 20 August 1914, Grandma four little daughters, no money Nothing, no Benefits in those day, The Landlord in remorse paid two Irishmen a few bottles of grog to dig the grave in the church yard opposite the new bridge, When the funeral came they had to lift the two Irishmen out of the grave and all the bottles before Grandad was laid to rest, age 36.
    The Landlord then went back to the Ferry Inn, went upstairs to his bed room and cut his throat, He too is also buried in the same church yard, a big stone on his grave, nothing on Grandads.
    Grandma had to go to work in Vickers ship yard as there was no money unless you worked.
    In 1920 she got herself pregnant by a 21 year old lad in the same street, It went on in those days same as today, lace up boots, six long pettycoats, long dress to the ankles, and buttoned up to the neck.
    Aunty Florence was born and the new 22 year old father couldnt handle five young girls and a wife so he did a runner to New Zealand and was never seen again.
    Grandma sent my mother on the train at the age of 12 with a change of clothes in a bag and an aspidestra plant all the way to Bolton to stay with Aunt Cissie
    and on Monday morning was working in a cotton mill at the age of 12, her wage was sent up to Walney Island to Grandma.
    In the mill she met my dad and they get married and I am now here, so some good came out of all that.
    I used to take mother to Walney every time I came home on leave and have lunch in the Ferry Inn.
    I was in there at the Bar, a sherry and a pint, the Landlord was an Italian, I said to him, Is that your bedroom just above here?? he said Yes, I said, that room is haunted, the previous Landlord committed suicide in there by cutting his throat, he turned white, .
    A few weeks later I went back with mother, and there was a new Landlord, where is the Italian, I asked, I was told , he did a runner a few weeks ago.
    so probably didnt like what I told him.
    Around 1980 I took Mother and her four sisters to Walney Island for the day and took them to Vickerstown school where they all attended as young girls, they went into the school and met the Head Mistress and then in front of all the school the five ex pupils told their story of what it was like in the school 70 years before. and got a standing ovation. they were happy at that,
    When Mother died in 1990, and was cremated we took her ashes in a box to Walney, and had lunch in the Ferry Inn where the story began.
    the box was on the table with a glass of sherry on it and we all had a toast to her and a sip of her sherry. then we went to North Shore where she played as a girl and poured the ashes into a hole in the sand with a small crucifix she always wore and I said the Burial at Sea Service over her. A tot of Sherry was poured onto the sand over her ashes and we all drank a toast again to her,
    she was back where she belonged.
    I last went to Walney in March this year. The Ferry Inn is still there, had lunch and a pint there and told the story to the landlord.
    Cheers
    Brian.
    Last edited by Captain Kong; 3rd August 2018 at 12:04 PM.

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    Default Re: Life Story of a Merchant Navy Electrician - Noel Murray

    This is fascinating, Brian. Thanks for posting Dave Murray's link. Reading of Noel's time with Brocklebanks has prompted recall of events that I'd lost sight of when laying out my own memoir. Simple things like the barber who journeyed the length of Suez trimming our hair - and that has me struggling to recall who cut our hair in Calcutta, and who did it when at sea. There are other things too - like sharks in Aden harbour, and the giant sunfish that our Indians caught and hauled aboard in the same harbour. It seems memory only needs a nudge like Noel's story gives, to bring old events to the surface. I'm working on vol2 now, so reading other chaps memoirs helps a good deal. So long ago it was, all those old ships long gone, and we are now venerable ourselves. I feel like an antique in this frantic modern world.

    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Probetts (Site Admin) View Post
    [FONT="] Hi, my dad, Noel Murray, was a merchant navy electrician from 1958 to 1982.
    He died in 2014 but wrote his life story which I’ve now published as a blog.
    It could be of interest to anyone with an interest in life at sea in that period.

    [/FONT][FONT="]https://williamnoelmurray.wordpress.com/

    Dave Murray.[/FONT]

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    Default Re: Life Story of a Merchant Navy Electrician - Noel Murray

    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Kong View Post
    Enjoyed the story of Walney Island,
    My roots are there,
    . The Ferry Inn is still there, had lunch and a pint there and told the story to the landlord.
    Cheers
    Brian.
    That's a rich and tragic human story, Brian. I've quoted it so that it doesn't get lost - it deserves to be read. I'm moved to read how you scattered the ashes -- I did similar for my sister in Australia; when her son brought them to the UK we had a ceremony below the headland at Hartlepool. He ashes were scattered in a rockpool where she played as a child. We covered the pool in rose petals. When the tide came in ashes and petals went south on the Longshore Drift. I like to imagine my sister is now part of Spurn Point.
    Last edited by Doc Vernon; 16th September 2018 at 07:25 PM.

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