Stoker Thomas Donaldson

Stoker 1st Class, Thomas Stewart Donaldson, Royal Navy. He was lost at sea on 17th January 1942, aged 30, when his ship H.M.S. “Matabele” was torpedoed and sunk. He had been born in Stirling and was the son of Peter and Margaret Donaldson of Spylaw Road, Kelso and is commemorated on the Plymouth Naval Memorial. He had joined the Royal Navy in 1932 after being educated at Kelso High School. The ship was a Tribal Class Destroyer and was launched at Scotts of Greenock on 6th October 1936. She had a complement of 219 Officers and men. In January 1942 she was an escort Destroyer for Convoy PQ 8 from Iceland to Murmansk, Russia. She was torpedoed on 17th January by U-454 and sank almost immediately after the aft magazines exploded. Only 2 survivors were picked up by the minesweeper H.M.S. “Hermes”.  Th U-Boat herself was sunk in 1943 in the Bay Of Biscay by an Australian Sunderland flying boat  with 14 survivors.

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