Aircraft – Sunderland, U-boat U-461
Robert Taylor’s dramatic
rendering captures the final moments on July 30th, 1943 of U-461 in the
Bay of Biscay as Flight Lieutenant Dudley Marrows RAAF spots three U-boats
on the surface and powers his four-engined Sunderland aircraft over the
conning tower of U-461, through a hail of gun fire. The submarines were
at their most vulnerable as they set out and returned from their deadly
missions in the Atlantic Ocean.
“The U-boats were manoeuvring in formation, keeping bows pointed
towards the attacking aircraft, putting up a formidable barrage of cannon
and machine gun fire. I decided the only thing to do was to go in as low
as possible. We went in, jinking violently, with all 30 guns of the three
submarines firing at us. Shrapnel was hitting the fuselage like hail.
Just skimming the swell tops, I had to pull up to clear the sub as I dropped
my depth charges. We just cleared the conning tower” Ft. Lt. D Marrows.
Seven depth charges straddled U-461 and blew the ship apart. Climbing
away to assess the situation Dudley Marrows could see survivors in the
water and in an involuntary act of compassion, flew back over the scene
to drop one of his three dinghies to the survivors. It saved their lives.
Signed in pencil by the artist Robert Taylor, four crew of Sunderland
‘U’ and four crew of U-461; Flight Lieutenant Dudley Marrows
DSO DFC (Captain and Pilot), Flight Lieutenant John ‘Jock’
Rolland (Navigator), Flight Lieutenant Peter Jensen (1st Wireless Operator
– Air Gunner), Warrant Officer Horrie Morgan (Wireless Operator
– Air Gunner),
Leading Seaman Alois Momper, Medical Orderly Wilhelm Hoffken,
Able Seaman Helmut Roschinski, Able Seaman Gerhard Korbjuhn
print size: 25 inches wide x 16 inches high
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