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Warsailor Stories - Page 8

Gustav Larsson – Chief Engineer, Swedish Milos
Received from his nephew, Lennart Nordh
(All pictures, and quality, have been reduced in order to save disk space)

I searched the Internet and tried to find a picture of SS Milos. I also noticed that did not have picture of SS Milos so I decided that I would send them some of the information I have given to you in this E-mail and this picture which is a photo I have taken from a framed picture hanging on the wall at Möllevaangsgillet in Helsingborg. I found out on the Internet that a South African museum are selling pictures of SS Milos and other ships as well but they are rather expensive.

My uncle Gustav Larsson chief engineer on SS Milos, Rederi AB Helsingborg a subsidiary to Hillerström Rederi AB Helsingborg, was born August 5 1876 in Trelleborg Sweden and was married April 20 1913 in Helsingborg to my father's sister Agnes Hildegard Nordh who was born dec 29 1886. When Gustav died he had three children, a dughter Majken born jan 22 1914 and two sons Bertil born June 14 1915, Börje born November 8 1919.

Thank you for letting me know all about the convoy SC 121 and the other convoys SS Milos sailed with  thanks to your great work on the Internet. (Milos became a straggler while in this convoy, and was later sunk - follow the convoy link for more details).

Gustav departed Norway on March 18-1940 onboard SS Milos but must have been back in Sweden sometime between the date the Convoy HG 61 arrived to Liverpool on the May 20-1941 and the Convoy ON 126 departed from Liverpool on Aug. 29-1942 since I remember that he visited our family and me when I was sick in bed. I also have another proof that tells me that he must have been in Sweden later than May 1941 since I have a propaganda card with a rotating wheel inside with 8 different facts about the English lion and its bad health as the result of lost battles and lost ships. My sister and I got one card each and my sister's card has survived her playing with a notation at the right top saying "Birgit Nordh minne av farbror Gusav" (Birgit Nordh in memory of uncle Gustav). I was four years old August 1942 but still remember Gustav's visit and I know that he was supposed to go to sea again a few days later. Perhaps was it a farewell visit despite it was never mentioned but Gustav knew for sure what was to be expected back on the Atlantic. I even remember I had the card myself and was fascinated when I could turn the wheel and see the fever rising but I did not save my card. Anyhow Gustav knew what it was like to be a war sailor when he gave us our cards since he departed Gibraltar on May 6-1941 Convoy HG 61 if he was onboard SS Milos at that time.

 "Fever curve" - English Tonnage: 

 Progress of the Axis: 

On friday April 2 this article was published in Helsingborgs Dagblad.

It lasted a long time until the family got the message and on it you can read the date June 18 1943, supposedly the date he was declared dead by the authorities.

On All Saints' Day November 1 1943 there was a divine service in memory of the sailors who went down serving the merchant marine at wartime.

Ship-owners and other interested had given money so that a monument in memory of the sailors who died during their duty in the merchant marine could be inaugurated July 23 1950, in a park in Helsingborg viewing Öresund the strait that separates Helsingborg from the Danish town Elsinore.

The monument was moved from its earlier position to a place nearby the harbour to make it easier for people to visit the monument and was reinaugurated October 27 2006. Members of the town council, a sailor's priest from the Swedish church and Olof Jönsson a citizen of Helsingborg who wrote a booklet "Krigsseglare" (war sailors) the year 2000 gave speeches in remembrance of the sailors who so well served Sweden. Another representativ for the sailors read a poem in wich he mentioned the fact that our country remembered the sailors who died and forgot the sailors who returned alive.

The creator of the sailor monument (sjömansmonumentet) called the Shell (Snäckan) is the artist Robert Nilsson. Water flows over the monument with its ship convoys, waves and faces of men down to the basin with a surrounding compass-rose.

Carved in stones underneath you can find the name of the ships and the sailors from Helsingborg who lost their lifes when their ships went down.


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