In memory of my father, Anthony N. LoFrese
853rd Engineers Aviation Battalion

I found a scripted poem
On paper torn and old
The Sinking of the Rohna
The story he had told

My dad survived the Rohna’s plight
November, forty-three
He clung to life, beat the odds
The ship made history

The story in the poem
About a place and time
World War II, Thanksgiving eve
A quatrain, in perfect rhyme

Metal flying guns ablaze
He told of tears and screams
Some let go or slipped away
Their faces haunted dreams

When I was young he told tales
Of times he spent abroad
He made me laugh, then he’d cry
And often thanked the Lord

In waters cold, filled with death
Young men in rafts or floats
Held tightly to their comrades arms
There were no working boats

Their transport, H.M.T. Rohna
A British merchant ship
Transformed in military style
Commissioned, but unfit

He said torpedoes hit the ship
Gibraltar in his sight
But Germans launched a missile
Sank the ship that night

The things he saw he tried to hide
With humor or a joke
We never knew the real truth
The story never broke

My father died in eighty-nine
At the age of seventy
Long before the world would learn
About the largest loss at sea

2020 Reunion

2020 Reunion Has Been Cancelled


Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, and with sad hearts, we have decided to cancel the 2020 Rohna reunion.

We believe it is the right course of action to take for the health and safety of our members.

We have already rescheduled the reunion in Salt Lake City, Utah to June 10-13, 2021. Even though the travel and hotel industries have been hit hard by this health crisis, they have guaranteed us the same room rates.

If you are not registered to receive our newsletter, please do so now. We will do our best as determined by current events, to get it out to our membership. Please keep safe and stay healthy during these unprecedented times.

We are looking forward to seeing all of you in June 2021!

Your Reunion Coordinators


To stay updated on the schedule, please subscribe to the newsletter.

You have Successfully Subscribed!