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Article: My uncle Eddie prisoner on Graf Spee

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    My uncle Eddie prisoner on Graf Spee

    21 Comments by martinskoby Published on 20th October 2012 10:40 AM
    The story starts way back in the 50's My mother always carried in her purse two very small press cuttings featuring a man in uniform, and she told me the story of how his ship the SS. Tairoa was sunk by the Graf Spee, and that he was rescued by the captain of the Graf Spee and taken prisoner, together with all the rest of the Tiaroa's crew, he and many other prisoners stayed aboard the Graf Spee throughout the Battle of the river Plate. This man was her eldest brother. He was released along with all the other prisoners when the Graf Spee entered Montevideo for repairs, he then made his way back to the U.K. He took up a new merchant navy post as an engineer, and was sunk by U Boat action and died in 1942.
    To see the full story go to The Graf Spee prisoners To see my efforts at makeing a web page dedicated to my uncle Eddie.

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    As a 16 years old schoolboy I remember seeing the film 'Battle of the River Plate' at The Hippodrome cinema at Connah's Quay, Flintshire. Now long closed down. At that time I never dreampt that just six months later I would be the galley boy on an oil tanker sailing into Montevidao where that very same action took place.

    John Albert Evans

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    I too saw the film as a schoolboy JA and a few years later sailed into Monte on board a L+H ship and to my surprise the Tacoma was berthed ahead of us, I just stared at it and thought of what that ship had been part of, wonderful moment.

    Chris.
    When one door closes another one shuts, it must be the wind

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    I saw the wreck of the Graf Spey in the early 50s and I last went to Montevideo in 2006, on the quayside a memorial has been built for the Graf Spey. Its anchor is there and the Gun range finder from the Top Mast and a few other things.
    I have the photos of them somewhere inside my computer.
    Brian.

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    I have serious doubts that She will ever be raised, the cost would be enormous, and where would you put her, ?
    Tony Wilding

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    Default Graf Spee Memorial Montevideo


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    I have a photo like that one Tony, but I am on it also the Gun Direction finder and another one, The photos are too large to upload.
    Cheers
    Brian.

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    Default Thank you all for your interest.

    good morning all at the forum.
    Just a line to say many of you have seen the film "Battle of the River plate", This was the second version . The first version was called "For Freedom" circa 1940 It was a good effort at the time and featured many of the real people involved, including many of the captains and crew of the sunken merchant ships. Also some of the ordinary seamen that were then separated and put onto the Graf Spee support ship "Altmark" later all rescued by the Royal Navy in Norway. Just google "Altmark incident" for the full story. I do have a copy of the film and if anyone would like to see it just drop me a message. All best, and thanks again.
    Martin.

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    Back in the early 1950s I sailed with a Scouse who had been a prisoner on Altmark. Most of you will remember how we often took the Mickey out of the RN. This Scouse,Freddy(cant remember his Surname) one day told us not to keep taking the p*** out of the RN. He said,"The most beautiful sight I have ever seen is HMS Cossack when she rescued us from Altmark. I've never forgotten that and to this day am still reluctant to take the p*** out of the Royal Navy.

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    I wonder if this is the same guy Colin. It would have been around 52/53 when I sailed with a Scouse named Freddy, who told us a similar story, although I can't specifically recall the name of the ship as Altmark. You will know if it was him as he was a constant chain smoker, who always had a fag in his mouth, lighting the next from the last one. Another trait was his ability to make booze out of almost anything, which he said he learned during a brief stay in a POW camp. He was a handy bloke to know, exept that he nicked everyone else's fags!
    Taff

    "The sea, once it casts it's spell,
    holds one in it's net of wonder forever." - Jacques Cousteau

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