Ships hit by U-boats


British Steam merchant

Photo courtesy of the Allen Collection

Type:Steam merchant
Tonnage2,962 tons
Completed1915 - Blohm & Voss, Hamburg 
OwnerEllerman & Papayanni Lines Ltd, Liverpool 
Date of attack19 Oct 1940Nationality:      British
FateSunk by U-101 (Fritz Frauenheim)
Position57° 12'N, 10° 43'W - Grid AM 2958
Complement51 (17 dead and 34 survivors).
RouteNew Orleans - Sydney (5 Oct) - Liverpool 
Cargo3700 tons of grain 
History Completed in May 1915 as motor merchant Fritz for Blohm & Voss, Hamburg. 1920 taken over by Britain and renamed Assyrian for Ellerman & Papayanni Lines Ltd, Liverpool. 1925 converted to steam merchant. 
Notes on event

At 01.22 hours on 19 Oct 1940, U-101 fired three bow torpedoes at convoy SC-7 about 102 miles west by north of Barra Head, Outer Hebrides, and two minutes later the stern torpedo. Frauenheim reported four hits on four ships and claimed 21.000 grt sunk. However, the Assyrian was hit by a bow torpedo and the Soesterberg by the stern torpedo.

The Assyrian (Master Reginald Sanderson Kearon) was the ship of convoy commodore (Vice-Admiral Lachlan D.I. Mackinnon, CB, CVO, RN). 15 crew members and two naval staff members were lost. The master, the commodore, three naval staff members, 20 crew members and nine passengers were picked up by HMS Leith (L 36) (Cdr R.C. Allen, RN) and landed at Liverpool.

The master, Reginald Sanderson Kearon, was awarded the Lloyd´s War Medal for bravery at sea.

On boardWe have details of 18 people who were on board

If you can help us with any additional information on this vessel then please contact us.

Return to Allied Ships hit by U-boats