David Anthony Baily Abdy, RN

Born  12 Aug 1911
Died  Apr 1987(75)


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Ranks

1 Aug 1932 S.Lt.
1 Feb 1935 Lt.
1 Feb 1943 Lt.Cdr.
??? A/Cdr.

Retired: 5 Nov 1951


Decorations

Warship Commands listed for David Anthony Baily Abdy, RN


ShipRankTypeFromTo
HMS H 44 (N 44)Lt.SubmarineNov 194023 Nov 1940
HMS P 32 (P 32)Lt.Submarine24 May 194118 Aug 1941
HMS Safari (P 211)Lt.Cdr.Submarineearly 19444 Mar 1944
HMS LST 324 (LST 324)Lt.Cdr.Tank landing ship15 Mar 1945Oct 1945

Career information

When his submarine HMS P 32 was sunk on 18 Aug 1941 Lt. David Anthony Baily Abdy, RN and the coxswain were the only survivors.

Events related to this officer

Submarine HMS P 32 (P 32)


26 May 1941
HMS P 32 (Lt. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) departed Holy Loch for Gibraltar. She was escorted South through the Irish Sea by HMS Cutty Sark (Cdr.(Retd.) R.H. Mack, RN).

For the daily positions of HMS P 32 during this passage see the map below.


HMS P 32 passage Holy Loch - Gibraltar click here for bigger map (1)

31 May 1941 (position 44.24, -9.46)
HMS P 32 (Lt. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) is depth charged and damaged by a German Heinkel 59 seaplane in the Bay of Biscay. moderate damage was caused to P 32.

Later the same day P 32 sighted a Westbound tanker but she did not attack her as to do not give her position away in her damaged state and it was also possible that this tanker was Spanish.

(All times are zone -2)
1600 hours - In position 44º24'N, 09º46'W sighted a Heinkel 59 bearing 110º. She was seen banking towards. Dived.

1601 hours - When at 70 feet and still on our original course three depth charges exploded causing damage to the after hydroplanes and the battery. Went to 150 feet.

1640 hours - Heard three detonations.

2035 hours - Surfaced in position 44º15'N, 09º54'W and resumed passage to Gibraltar. (1)

3 Jun 1941
HMS P 32 (Lt. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) arrived at Gibraltar. (1)

10 Jun 1941
HMS P 32 (Lt. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) is docked at Gibraltar for repairs to the damage sustained on 31 May. (2)

18 Jun 1941
HMS P 32 (Lt. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) is undocked. (2)

21 Jun 1941
HMS P 32 (Lt. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) is docked again at Gibraltar. (2)

23 Jun 1941
HMS P 32 (Lt. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) is undocked. (2)

3 Jul 1941
HMS P 32 (Lt. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) completed her repairs at Gibraltar. (3)

5 Jul 1941
HMS P 32 (Lt. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) conducted trials and exercises off Gibraltar. (3)

6 Jul 1941
HMS P 32 (Lt. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) conducted exercises off Gibraltar. (3)

9 Jul 1941
HMS P 32 (Lt. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) conducted exercises off Gibraltar. (3)

14 Jul 1941
HMS P 32 (Lt. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) conducted exercises off Gibraltar. (3)

17 Jul 1941
HMS P 32 (Lt. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) departed Gibraltar for her 1st war patrol. She was ordered to patrol off Cagliari, Sardinia, Italy. She was to proceed to Malta upon completion of this patrol.

For the daily positions of HMS P 32 during this passage see the map below.


HMS P 32 1st war patrol click here for bigger map (4)

31 Jul 1941
HMS P 32 (Lt. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) ended her 1st war patrol at Malta. (4)

12 Aug 1941
HMS P 32 (Lt. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) departed Malta for her 2nd war patrol. She was ordered to patrol off Tripoli, Libya. (5)

18 Aug 1941 (position 33.02, 13.10)
HMS P 32 (Lt. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) is lost by an explosion (either internal or a mine) off Tripoli, Libya while attacking an enemy convoy.

(All times are zone -2)
Around 1530 hours P 32 was at periscope depth when a convoy of four medium seized merchant ships in line ahead was sighted with an aircraft overhead. No escorts were seen. Started attack on the rear ship that was thought to be a tanker of about 6000 tons. Went to 50 feet and closed at speed.

Around 1540 hours when P 32 was returning to periscope depth from 50 feet when at 34 feet an explosion occured and P 32 took a large angle bow down. She was out of control and hit the bottom at 200 feet where she remained.

The submarine was flooded up from forward up to the control room. Chlorine gas was filling the submarine and it was decided to try to escape from the engine room escape hatch using D.S.E.A. apparatus. The Commanding Officer and two ratings went to the conning tower to try to escape from there. The commanding officer and one of the ratings, the coxwain, succesfully did so. The other rating drowned during the attempt. The two survivors were later picked up by an Italian MAS boat and taken to Tripoli.

The ships P 32 had sighted were part of a convoy made up of the Italian merchants Nicolò Odero (6003 GRT, built 1925), Caffaro (6476 GRT, built 1924), Marin Sanudo (5958 GRT, built 1926), Giulia (5921 GRT, built 1926) and the Italian tanker Minatitland (7651 GRT, built 1941). Another Italian merchant vessel the Maddalena Odero (5545 GRT, built 1921) had already been torpedoed and damaged by aircraft and was no longer part of this convoy. Escort of this convoy had been the Italian destroyers Freccia, Euro and Dardo.


Submarine HMS Safari (P 211)


31 Jan 1944
HMS Safari (Lt.Cdr. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) ended her refit at Troon. (6)

5 Feb 1944
HMS Safari (Lt.Cdr. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) shifted from Troon to Holy Loch. (7)

8 Feb 1944
HMS Safari (Lt.Cdr. D.A.B. Abdy, RN) shifted from Holy Loch to Rothesay where she joined the 7th Submarine Flotilla. This was the training flotilla so from now on HMS Safari was assigned to training duties, mostly in the Clyde area. Often she was used for the Commanding Officers Qualifying Course. (7)

Sources

  1. ADM 199/1119
  2. ADM 173/16868
  3. ADM 173/16869
  4. ADM 199/1120
  5. ADM 199/2565
  6. ADM 199/2569
  7. ADM 173/18618

ADM numbers indicate documents at the British National Archives at Kew, London.


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