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Person Details
17 Mar 1898
He was the son of William Gordon and Edith E. Sankey (nee Fetherston) of Ireland who had married in Dublin in August 1898. In 1901 William (30) and Edith (23), their son Edward (2) and a boarder, Alexander Dixon, were living at 9 Killarney Avenue, in the North Dock district of Dublin. William was a commercial clerk in a coal and shipping office. Ten years later in 1911 the family was living at 27 Killarney Street, still in the North Dock area of Dublin; William and Edith now had three children, Edward, Violet Fetherston (5) and William Featheston (3). A third son, Charles, was born about 1913. Edward's father enlisted in the Army Pay Corps in the British Army on 26 June 1915 at the age of 43; he gave his address as 27 Killarney Street and his occupation as clerk. He was on home service until he was demobilized in April 1920, having in 1919 chosen to defer his discharge. The death notice in a Nottingham paper in December 1918 gives his parent's address as 78 Talbot Street, Nottingham, and this is the address to which the Royal Navy sent the notice of Edward's death to his mother. Edward's parents and their three surviving children, Violet, William and Charles, emigrated to Canada after the war; they sailed on the SS Empress of France from Liverpool on 8 June 1921, destination, Quebec. The family had probably continued to live on Talbot Street until they emigrated as William Gordon's name appears in a 1920 edition of Wright's Directory of Nottingham (he was still listed in the 1922 Kelly's Directory). The CWGC record gives William and Edith's address as 4462 Prince Albert Street, Vancouver, British Columbia.
01 Dec 1918
3046681 - CWGC Website
Mersey Z/1965 (Dev)
Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve
He served aboard HM Trawler Ethelwulf. Ethelwulf was lost with all hands when the trawler hit a mine in the North Sea off North Shields. His body was not recovered for burial and he is commemorated on Plymouth Naval Memorial.
Records vary the spelling of Fetherston/Fetherstone. Nottingham Post notice (abridged), 5 December 1918: SANKEY. December 1st, Edward F Sankey, Wireless Telegraphist RNVR, on board HMST Ethelwulf, eldest son of William G Sankey, parents 78 Talbot Street. The National Archives: ADM 137/3805 Description: Loss of HM Fishing Trawlers ETHELWULF and T.W. MOULD www.newsguardian.co.uk/news/disaster-off-tyne-claims-lives-of-the-crew-from-two-trawlers-1-4023694 THE Shields Daily News report, ‘Terrible Disaster off the Tyne – Two trawlers mined – all hands missing’, on December 2, 1918, told of the loss of two locally-based trawlers which had struck mines north east of the Tyne – going down with the presumed loss of all crewmen. 'The Armistice of November 11, 1918, did not bring an end to the sad toll of loss for local families. The war did not end formally until July 1919 with the conclusion of the Treaty at Versailles. With the area’s strong maritime connections, hundreds of local men from North Shields were in constant peril from the continuing danger posed by thousands of high explosive mines in the North Sea. These had been placed by both the enemy and the British, and it would be years before the menace of random death caused by striking a loose mine would become a rare occurrence. In the immediate aftermath of the war tragedy struck twice on the same day – December 1 – and left 12 local families to mourn the loss of husbands and sons. Two vessels, the steam trawlers Ethelwulf and T W Mould were fishing with a number of others from the North Shields fleet when two loud explosions were heard at about 3am and two boats were engulfed in flames. The fleet was re-assembled and it was found that the Ethelwulf and T W Mould were missing. A search at first light revealed nothing and the fleet returned to port where news of the tragedy and loss amongst families, all well-known to each other, spread rapidly.' [MORE] http://www.naval-history.net/xDKCas1918postArmistice.htm MINED AND SUNK OFF THE TYNE Ethelwulf, ex-hired trawler, returned to mercantile service January 1915 JEFFERSON, Thomas, Deck Hand, RNR, DA 11417 SANKEY, Edward F, Telegraphist, RNVR, Mersey Z 1965 STEEDMAN, Robert, Ty/Skipper, RNR Research Rachel Farrand
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