Ajax Veterans Street Dedication: Smith Lane (Albert)
- Media Type:
- Street Name: Smith Lane
Name of Veteran: Albert E. Smith Feb. 27, 1922-
Rank: Able Seaman
Ship Served: HMS Ajax
Date of Service on Ship: 1939 to 1941
Year of Visit/Dedication: April 2006
Veteran or Family Visit: Son Ken and daughter-in-law Angela
Veteran of the Battle of the River Plate: Yes
Died at Battle: No
Albert was born on February 27, 1922. He joined the Royal Navy at the age of fifteen and was placed on HMS Ganges. From there he served HMS York and joined HMS Ajax in April 1939. He was only seventeen years old at the Battle of the River Plate. During the famous battle Albert was stationed in ‘A’ Turret, a 6 inch twin gun turret.
In January 1940 HMS Ajax was taken in for refit. Later that same year she sailed to the Mediterranean where she encountered and sank two Italian Destroyers and badly damaged another which was consequently sunk the following day by HMS York. By the time he left the Ajax in 1941 Albert was Acting Leading Seaman.
Albert also served the Royal Navy aboard HMS Medway, a depot ship, HMS Moy, HMS Kemthorn, HMS Cleopatra, Relentless, Defender and HMS Cavendish.
Albert left the Royal Navy in 1962 after more than twenty-four years of service. He was forty years old when he joined the civilian workforce as a Transport Manager for a local builder called Cadman’s. He retired from this job after twenty-five years of service in 1987 at the age of sixty five.
In 2005 Albert was still actively involved in the HMS Ajax and River Plate Veterans Association. That same year he was invited by Queen Elizabeth to attend the VE/VJ Celebrations in London.
- Copyright Statement:
- Copyright status unknown. Responsibility for determining the copyright status and any use rests exclusively with the user.
- Location of Original:
- Original document and image located in the Ajax Archives.
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