72nd anniversary of American naval tragedy recalled
An ecumenical service at St. Thomas Aquinas Church in St. Lawrence Feb. 18 remembered the 72nd anniversary of the sinking of the ‘USS Truxtun’ and ‘USS Pollux’.
It was on that day in 1942 disaster struck just off the coast of the Burin Peninsula, and two American navy ships were lost when they ran aground during a fierce winter storm.
The ‘ Truxtun’ went down at Chambers Cove near St. Lawrence, while the ‘Pollux’ sank at Lawn Point.
Although 203 American sailors perished in the disaster, the efforts of residents in the area helped save 186 lives.
Father Cecil Critch and Rev. Terry Caines presided over the ecumenical service.
Members of RCSCC 269 Endeavour were also on hand and, among other duties during the day, served as escorts during the wreath laying, emceed by Laurella Stacey.
Nella Hodder, Ailish Slaney and Madison Slaney presented the Book of Remembrance during the ceremony.
Intercessions were conducted by sea cadets CPO2 Peter Slaney, CPO2 Tiffany Lambe, PO2 Claire Edwards, Grade Nine student Jessica Squires and Grade Seven students Jerrett Edwards and Lucas Farrell.
Mayor Paul Pike brought greetings on behalf of his town, while assistant Carol Ann Haley repre- sented Random-Burin-St. George’s MP Judy Foote.
As part of the annual remembrance, three contests are held to keep the memory of the disaster alive and in the hearts of youth.
Megan Hodge won the poster contest, while Travis Perrot’s effort was selected as the best essay contest and Jessica Squires was the winner of the poem contest.
Emily Pittman and Heather Clarke sang the Canadian and American national anthems. Also performing, the St. Lawrence Academy Choir sang a reflection hymn.
LEFT: St. Lawrence Mayor Paul Pike brought greetings for the town during the Feb. 18 ecumenical service in remembrance of the 72nd anniversary of the Truxtun-Pollux disaster at St. Thomas Aquinas Church. St. Lawrence Fire Chief Darrell Doyle, escorted...