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US Cities Service Boston (6th Machine Gun Battalion AIF Memorial)Print Page Print this page

US Cities Service Boston
US Cities Service Boston

Photographs supplied by Diane Watson

The memorial is to four Australian soldiers who died in 1943 rescuing the 62-man crew of the American tanker, "US Cities Service Boston" which hit an offshore reef during a storm in 1943. The memorial was unveiled in 1968 and a second memorial plaque was dedicated in 1989.

The 9000 ton U.S. tanker was wrecked off Bass Point during heavy seas at dawn 16 May, 1943. "Cities Service of Boston", was caught in a violent gale. Waves rising as high as the ship`s funnel lashed the 9,000 ton tanker onto an offshore reef. To avoid breaking up in deep water, the tanker was ordered "full stream ahead", running the ripped hull aground on Bass Point. Members of the local volunteer defence corp, police and thirty soldiers from the 6th Machine Gun Battalion Airforce, were soon at hand. A daring rescue was undertaken to save 62 crewmen aboard. It was during this rescue that a huge wave swept 10 soldiers and seamen into the surging waters. Tragically four of the soldiers lost their lives. These were the only losses resulting from the shipwreck.

Location

Address:Bass Point Tourist Road, Bass Point, Shellharbour, 2529
State:NSW
Area:AUS
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -34.593611
Long: 150.899167
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Details

Monument Type:Monument
Monument Theme:Disaster
Sub-Theme:Maritime
Actual Event STart Date:16-May-1943
Actual Event End Date:16-May-1943

Dedication

Actual Monument Dedication Date:Sunday 8th September, 1968
Front Inscription

Plaque: 
THEY DIED THAT OTHERS MAY LIVE
NX 133805 Sgt Allen, W. F.
NX127791 Pte Pitt, G.W.
NX 118174 Pte Snell, R. J.
NX111705 Pte Symonds, B. H.
At Dawn 16 May, 1943, The U.S. Tanker, `Cities Services Boston` Was Wrecked On This Point During A Raging Sea.
Thirty Soldiers From 6 Australian M.G. Bn (A.I.F.) With Complete Disregard For Personal Safety Rescued The Entire Crew Of 62 Americans.
This Memorial Honours Those Who Showed Heroism And Particularly Those Who Paid The Supreme Sacrifice. 
UNVEILED BY CAPT S.D.MATCHETT (R.A.I.)
6 AUST MG BN ASSOC
CITIES SERVICE TANKERS CORPORATION
NEW YORK N.Y.
8 SEPT 1968


Plaque: 
                    MAY 21, 1989
WITH APPRECIATION AND RESPECT-
OUR ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF THESE BRAVE MEN
ON BEHALF OF THE CREW OF THE
" CITIES SERVICE BOSTON"

WE ATTENDED A REMEMBRANCE SERVICE 
         HERE ON THIS DAY - 

BEN HELLING, ED WEBSTER,
JOHN WIRDZEK & BUD RICKERT
       ALL OF CALIFORNIA - USA 

Source: NRWM,MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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