Like many others Eddie doesn't want to talk about the tough moments of service in the Royal Navy. He only wants to remember the good times of his childhood when he lived in Scotland and helped with the harvest in the school holidays. Born in Glenarm, County Antrim in 1925 his family moved to Scotland in 1933 and then to Swanage in Dorset where he joined the Sea Cadets and learned the Morse Code. This was instantly valuable when he and his twin brother volunteered for the Royal Navy in 1942 at the height of World War 2 as Wireless Officers on a small! aircraft carrier HMS Emperor, which carried 24 Hellcat fighters and was on loan from the USA to the British Navy.
Eddie and his twin brother George served on the Emperor for 3 years on the Atlantic run dodging U-Boats, escorting convoys which were bringing in essential supplies for Britain's survival.
Their dad died while they were away. They served in the Mediterranean, at Malta, then Alexandria, operating against the occupied Greek islands of Milos and Kios until the German surrender at VE. Expecting to go home then they were ordered to proceed to Trincomalee in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) to operate against the Japanese until Japan surrendered.
Eddie and George were part of the crew that took the Emperor back to Norfolk Virginia where the Yanks sent her for scrap. 'She did a wonderful job for us during the war.'
He recalls his youth with pleasure 'when there were no yobs or drugs or stabbings and his marvellous school masters and school mistresses were in control of all the children' however he does admit to having had the cane just once!
George and Eddie
Eddie says,'Is there anyone out there still alive who served on the HMS Emperor DP98? If so please contact him on this web site.
Certificate awarded to Eddie by King Neptune
on crossing the Equator