Decorations for Five Members of Royal Canadian Navy
Ottawa Citizen, 3 March 1942
Awards, Approved by King, Follow Corvette Chambly's successful Encounter with U-Boat.
Acting Commander J.D. Prentice Wins D.S.O.
More Details Given of Sinking of Nazi Submarine.
The navy announced last night the award of decorations to five members of the Royal Canadian Navy in connection with the successful encounter with a Nazi submarine by the Canadian corvette Chambly, announced last November.
The decorations, approved by the King, were:
- Distinguished Service Order, Acting Commander J.D. Prentice, Halifax and Victoria.
- Distinguished Service Cross, Lieut. Edward T. Simmons, Victoria , and Lieut. A.R. Allen, Winnipeg.
- Distinguished Service Medal, Chief Engineroom Artificer W. Spence, Sarnia and London, Ont., Signalman Hugh E. Tobin, Hamilton.
Mentioned in Despatches were: Mate A.F. Pickard, Halifax, and South Porcupine, Ont., and Able Seaman L.P. Lehtu, Sioux Lookout., Ont.
At the same time the navy gave out additional details of the sinking of the German submarine U-501 which was forced to the surface by depth charges from the Chambly.
"While engaged in independent maneuvers with another corvette (the Moose Jaw), Cmdr. Prentice's vessel came upon the German U-501 lying in wait ahead if a heavily attacked convoy, carrying out the well-known wolf-pack tactics," said the navy.
"Depth charges forced the enemy to the surface and a running pursuit developed. Gunfire from the Canadian corvettes and the danger of torpedo discharges from the stern tubes of the fleeing German enlivened the chase.
"After some miles the German captain lost heart and surrendered his vessel to the Canadians, jumping aboard one of them in a most abject manner as she lay alongside."
Led Boarding Party
The Distinguished Service Cross to Lieut. E.T. Simmons "results partly from his resolute action in leading a boarding party although the U-501 was known to be sinking," said the navy. "The danger was so obvious that only one person could make the perilous descent of the conning tower Simmons could see below him the water lapping at the deck plates of the submarine's control-room as he climbed on down.
"Very shortly after reaching the ladder's foot, the dim emergency lighting failed entirely as the rising water quenched its supply. At this point there seemed no alternative but to retreat and Simmons barely escaped through the hatch above as the sub made its last plunge; one Canadian sailor of the boarding party was dragged under, the rest including Lt. Simmons were picked up by the ship's boats.
- German submarine U-501
- German submarine U-501 was a Type IXC U-boat of Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine during World War II. The submarine was laid down on 12 February 1940 at the Deutsche Werft yard in Hamburg, launched on 25 January 1941 and commissioned on 30 April 1941 under the command of Korvettenkapitän Hugo Förster. The boat served with 2nd U-boat Flotilla until she was sunk on 10 September 1941. - Wikipedia
- Wreck Site
- C.B. 4051 (30) "U 501" Interrogation of Survivors
- HMCS Moose Jaw and the sinking of U-501
- KK Hugo Förster - nauticapedia.ca
- KK Hugo Förster, ex-U-501, was captured on 10 September 1941 by HMCS Chambly and Moose Jaw during his first war patrol in this boat, his only command, when he jumped aboard Moose Jaw's foc'sle - as he said, to ensure the ships fired no longer as they had surrendered. He was taken to England, where reportedly he was to be tried by a secret ex-U-boat 'court' in the camp for deserting his sinking U-501. He was moved to Canada for his protection, repatriated in January 1945 in an exchange of prisoners, and committed suicide on 27 February 1945, mostly due to the criticism by his contemporaries.
Sailor lost on 10 Sep
In memory of Stoker William Irvin Brown who died on September 10, 1941
- Service Number: A/4212
- Age: 24
- Force: Navy
- Unit: Royal Canadian Navy Reserve
- Division: H.M.C.S. Chambly