Monday, 23 August 2010

Maritime Monday: More Fair Hair and Blue Eyes

At the end of July I wrote about the service record of my gg uncle Edmund John HAYWOOD, stating that he had blond hair and blue eyes (unlike the other HAYWOODs I have known).  Now I come across the service record of his nephew, Ernest Murch HAYWOOD - and lo! and behold! he has fair hair and blue eyes as well...

Ernest Murch HAYWOOD, born on 19 October 1897, served for twelve years from 9 July 1913, so he was not quite 16 when his maritime career began.  His service record is covered with VGs (Very Good), and he passed numerous exams and badges.  During the First World War he was serving on board HMS Colossus when she took part in the Battle of Jutland (1916) aged only 19 and the word 'gratuity' is stamped at that point on his record.

The Battle of Jutland was the largest naval battle of World War One.  Fourteen British and eleven German ships were sunk, but both sides claimed victory.  Ernest Murch was one of the more fortunate, returning from the battle to continue to serve.

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