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Star of Suez seen as former Marthara. Photo


Built: 1926

Tonnage: 4,999 / 8,246 tons

Cargo: 6,000 tons of war materials, including 1200 tons of explosives, 50 tons of paper and replacement parts for aircraft and trucks

Route: New York - Trinidad - Table Bay - Suez 

Sunk 15 December 1942 by U-159 on position 00º.42”S 29º.34”W

2 Dead

40 Survivors   

Completed in January 1926 as British Marthara for Maclay & McIntyre, Glasgow. 1938 sold to Egpyt and renamed Star of Suez for Alexandria Navigation Co Ltd (Red Rose Line), Alexandria. 

At 14.20 hours on 15 Dec 1942 the unescorted Star of Suez was hit amidships by one torpedo from U-159 and sank after 17 minutes about 100 miles south of St. Pauls Rocks. One crew member was killed. The U-boat had spotted the ship at 12.07 hours and almost at the same time U-134 (Schendel), which also tried to get into a firing position since 10.55 hours. Witte questioned the survivors in the two lifeboats and recovered 45 aircraft tires, a 20 hp electric motor and 120 grapefruits from the flotsam.

The other U-boat joined them at the sinking position and took also aircraft tires and replacement parts for cars on board. The boat in charge of the master with eleven occupants made landfall 23 miles southeast of Fortaleza at night on 23 December, but the second officer died of exhaustion after reaching land. 30 survivors in the boat in charge of the chief officer reached Fortaleza on 26 December.



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