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Thank you for visiting the Rohna Survivors Memorial Association website. We encourage you to post to our Guestbook. You can ask general questions or make inquiries about specific people. The entries are public, so if you have a private question, please use our confidential Contact form.

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ashwin rao ashwin rao wrote on November 25, 2013 at 9:11 am:
one of the survivor , who is basically indian still alive in a remote village in India .. he is 92 years old . he recounts the horrible incident ... His name is Mr Thomas alva , who stays in mariapura , near pangala ,dakhsina kannada Karnataka , India ..
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Ed Owen Ed Owen wrote on November 22, 2013 at 1:23 am:
Brother of William Alex Owen PVT. 34035988; 853rd Engineer BN.AVN.Corps of Eng. Home town: Asheville, N.C. 14 siblings I was the 14th child born on April 22, 1943
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Mona Gilbert Mona Gilbert wrote on November 20, 2013 at 11:58 pm:
I\'m the niece of Archie Robert Payne, who died on the Rohna, November 27,1943. I never had the privilege of knowing him. I have heard many stories of what a wonderful man he was. He was my Father\'s Brother. While going through my Aunt\'s treasured things, I found a letter my Uncle wrote to his Mom and Dad. It saddened me to know that this was the last they would ever hear from him. I\'ve read this letter to my only living Aunt, Archie\'s youngest Sister. I wanted to know what happened so started a web search to see what I could learn about this terrible loss of so many soldiers. With the help of my Aunt who is 92 years old gave me some information that got me started. It was very emotional for me to learn what truly happened on that fateful day. My Grandmother and Grandfather and the rest of the family only knew he went missing at sea. I wish I had found this website sooner. I\'ve been reading stories from some of the Rohna survivors and came across Aubrey Williams story. He was in the U.S. Army Air Forces, 322nd Fighter Control Squadron, the same unit as my uncle. I was hoping he was still living and maybe he might remember him. My Uncle was from a small town Hankinson, N.D. I would love to know if there are any survivors that might have known him. I wish I had found this website sooner. God Bless all these men living, and who died for our country. I will never forget them and the sacrifice they made for our country. They are true heroes!
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Patricia G.Buse Patricia G.Buse wrote on November 20, 2013 at 6:15 am:
I am inquiring about my Uncle Pvt Joseph Edward Bielski.
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Mary Ann Bunn Mary Ann Bunn wrote on November 20, 2013 at 2:26 am:
I always knew my great uncle Robert Filbrun died at sea in WWII. I had no idea what ship or the significance of the fate of this ship. It\'s nice to see this history is preserved for future generations. Thanks to all who has kept these wonderful veterans\' memory alive!
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Richard Steele Richard Steele wrote on November 18, 2013 at 8:17 pm:
My father was one of the survivors of this ship. where can I purchase a book or books on it ? I have tried amazon but never did receive any thing.
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Gerald Cottec Gerald Cottec wrote on November 15, 2013 at 10:49 pm:
I am pleased to see the new site up and operating. My Father was John Cottec Jr and he was a crewman on the USS Pioneer. Sadly he passed in 2005. We watched the Rhonna special on the History channel together as a family and afterwards, Dad filled us in on details. It was a horrifying story. I know he never cared about being honored or recognized for doing his duty, but not a day went by that he didn\'t think about that day and all the hero\'s that were lost and forgotten by their Government. I for one, will never forget and pass the story on to my children and relatives. God Bless You All!
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Phyl Matteson Phyl Matteson wrote on November 15, 2013 at 2:40 pm:
i would like to amend my earlier message. I neglected to mention that Gus was separated from the other fellows who were rescued, so he was not noticed and left behind. We don\'t know by what miracle he was finally found. He thinks he saw 3 sunsets, but has been assured he could not have survived that long in the frigid water. We will never know.
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Phyl Matteson Phyl Matteson wrote on November 15, 2013 at 2:09 pm:
Please think of WWII Veteran August Senne. He will be laid to rest Saturday morning November 16 2013. As his family has aversion to guns, he will not be afforded his so well deserved gun salute. I had hoped to bring him on a spring honor flight to DC. Here is his amazing story: When the USS Rohna was sunk by a missile, he spent unknown hours or days being tossed in 40 foot waves waiting for rescue. The incident was kept secret for decades. Eventually he was given the purple heart. In spite of resulting lifelong effects of hypothermia and back pain, he lived an admirable life. It\'s hard for me to express how much respect I have for this wonderful man. Phyl
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Susan Bryer Susan Bryer wrote on November 15, 2013 at 3:50 am:
My father is a survivor, Frank Bryer, and still gratefully with us. It\'s only been in the last 10 or so years that he\'s been talking about this. After a triple bi-pass at age 80, he started writing about his experience in the Army. I remember a telephone conversation we had years ago. He was telling me this story of the sinking ship and how bad he felt that he wasn\'t strong enough to hold on to fellow men over the side. He was very detailed and sobbing- I honestly assumed he had fallen asleep watching The Titanic movie.
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Mary Krell Bowersox Mary Krell Bowersox wrote on November 13, 2013 at 8:22 pm:
My Uncle, Sgt. Thomas O. Tyner was lost on this ship. It was not until my Nephew, Ken Leland researched for a long time, that we know what happened to him. His body was never recovered. It is so wonderful to have this information and the the history of the Rohna. It gives closure somewhat to our family. My Grandparents, Thomas O. Tyner, Sr. and Matilda Tyner who lived in Sanford, Florida died not ever knowing how or where their Son died. Thank you for this website.
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gary cummings gary cummings wrote on November 13, 2013 at 5:00 pm:
my dad was seriously wounded on the rohna...recovered in a british hospital in algeria and eventually made it to china where he spent 39 months with the 14th air force ..he rarely spoke of the bombing........
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Dawn Bailey- Duffy Dawn Bailey- Duffy wrote on November 13, 2013 at 4:03 pm:
My grand-father passed on the Rohna...Tilden Dale Jenkins from Helena, AL
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Natasha Shimp Natasha Shimp wrote on November 13, 2013 at 3:52 pm:
My dad\'s dad, Jake Shimp AI-826-A, was a survivor however passed away July 1999. He told us he was floating for 6 hours and couldn\'t swim 🙂 So blessed he survived or I would not be here today as I wasn\'t born until 1979. Thank you for all this work maintaining the history 🙂
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Barbara Sherman Barbara Sherman wrote on November 13, 2013 at 1:10 pm:
My Uncle Thomas Olin Tyner was on the ship.. His mother, My Grandmother and the rest of his family died Never knowing what happened to him,
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Don Gartner Don Gartner wrote on November 13, 2013 at 1:08 am:
Veterans Day always brings up memories of my father Paul Gartner, a survivor of the Rhona sinking. My dad was from Wyomissing, PA and passed away in 1989. Although my dad was born in Germany he was a true American through and through. He love this country and taught my brothers and I true American Patriotism. I am very proud of his service to our country and awed by the dedication and sacrifice by those who serve and have serve our country in the military. The website is a great tribute to those who were lost and those that survived this tragedy. Thanks to all involved in creating and maintaining the website.
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Terri Finch Terri Finch wrote on November 13, 2013 at 12:36 am:
My father Chuck Finch was a Rohna survivor. He wrote and researched extensively on the subject for 50+ years. We never had a conversation that did not eventually get around to the Rohna disaster, and the memories haunted him until the day he died. Thank you for creating this site. It will honor these men who sacrificed so much. I look forward to visiting it often in the weeks and months ahead.
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Robie Sprouse Robie Sprouse wrote on November 12, 2013 at 11:07 pm:
Hello to everyone! So glad to see the new site up and running. It looks great!
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Amy Ertel Amy Ertel wrote on November 12, 2013 at 7:43 pm:
My great uncle was Francis Firsich. We are always seeking information about anyone who knew him.
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Randy Gartner Randy Gartner wrote on November 12, 2013 at 7:39 pm:
My uncle Paul Gartner was on the ship and survived the sinking.He was in a medical unit and eventually made it to Burma and China surviving the war.He told me the story of the sinking when I was 16.I am now 61.
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Mary Jo Boylan Mary Jo Boylan wrote on November 12, 2013 at 3:59 am:
Correction to last post---70 years!! Not 60. Wow!
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Mary Jo Boylan Mary Jo Boylan wrote on November 12, 2013 at 3:40 am:
This Veteren\'s Day I am thinking of my Father, Raymond Boylan, and realized the 60th anniversary of that tragedy was upon us shortly. Like most WWII vets my father spoke minimally of his service years, but once contacted for a reunion of Rhona Survivors he shared with us the incredible story of the night he passed in the Mediterranean Sea. So tonight my heart is full remembering him, the survivors, rescuers, and the souls lost. This web site is a wonderful tribute. Thank you for creating it to keep the story intact for grand and great grandchildren of these men.
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Michael Bailey Michael Bailey wrote on November 12, 2013 at 12:28 am:
I just wanted to say happy Veteran\'s Day to everyone. Thank you for serving our country, and I salute both those who have passed, and those who are still living. My grandfather, Clarence Joseph Bailey, was among the American survivors of the HMT Rohna tragedy. He passed away in 2008, but his memory alone is a wonderful memorial to all those who fought by his side. I am proud be the grandson of one of the many military heroes who have served.
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