Ajax Veterans Street Dedication: Davey Street
- Media Type:
- Street Name: Davey Street
Name of Veteran: John (Jock) Gauthrope Davey 1920-June 2, 1940
Rank: Able Seaman, Air Mechanic
Ship Served: HMS Ajax
Date of Service on Ship: 1939
Year of Visit/Dedication: Dedicated 1999, plaque installed Nov. 2003 when street completed
Veteran or Family Visit: Martin Davey, brother (1999)
Veteran of the Battle of the River Plate: Yes
Died at Battle: No
Able Seaman John Davey was a boy entrant into the Royal Navy via HMS Ganges and HMS Ramillies, in 1936/37. He joined HMS Ajax at her re-commissioning at Chatham on January 17, 1938.
‘Jock’ became Ordinary Seaman on May 5, 1938 and served on Ajax during her cruises throughout 1938 and 1939 between Trinidad and Chile, visiting the Rio de la Plata several times in the process as well as the Falkland Islands.
On December 29, 1938 ‘Jock’ was recommended for the job of Air Mechanic by Captain Woodhouse. He had also become Able Seaman at about that time.
He served on the Ajax during the Battle of the River Plate and returned with her to the UK for the victory march in London. He apparently is clearly seen on the ‘Pathe Newsreel’ taken at the time of the march which recorded Ajax’s crew marching down Guildhalll towards the Mansion House in London. His brother Martin notes that he is ‘nearest to the camera-in the front rank, right hand column and is one of the tallest there’. The BBC has shown this film several times throughout the years. Martin says his brother was also featured on a newsreel, shot in Montevideo following the action at the Plate. “Jock, in whites raises a glass to the camera”.
John went missing and was presumed killed during the Dunkirk Evacuation, operation Dynamo on June 2, 1940. He was twenty years old. Martin writes that his brother was “very proud of his country, his ship and his mates. He was a keen all round sportsman, a loving son and a young man of integrity in all things- a nice bloke!”
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- Location of Original:
- Original document and image located in the Ajax Archives.
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