Skip to comments.MATRUH LOST, BRITISH REINFORCED BY U.S. PLANES, NEW ZEALANDERS (6/30/42)
Posted on 06/30/2012 5:30:58 AM PDT by Homer_J_Simpson
Soviets evacuating Sevastopol
Tuesday, June 30, 1942 www.onwar.com
Soviet troops leaving Sevastopol [photo at link]
On the Eastern Front... The Soviet High Command orders the evacuation of Sevastopol. The Soviet Black Sea Fleet, heavily damaged by the fighting attempts to remove the troops and equipment with little success.
In the Atlantic... The close cover escort for PQ-17 leaves Iceland. It is comprised of four cruisers, two American and three destroyers. The Germans sight but do not attack QP-13 out of Archangel.
June 30th, 1942
UNITED KINGDOM: London: The Daily Telegraph reports that the Nazis have killed over a million Jews in occupied Europe.
Britain: A campaign to save fuel in the home has been launched by the new ministry of fuel and power. It urges householders to turn off all unnecessary lights, use less water - five inches of bathwater is suggested as a maximum - and stop taps dripping. Coal supplies will be restricted, but not rationed. Housewives are urged to sift the ashes of fires for burnable lumps and share their fires with neighbours.
Britain: Lt. John Stuart Mould (1910-57), RANVR, was awarded the George Cross for his successful handling of dangerous bomb mine disposal problems from 14 November 1941 to this date.
ARCTIC OCEAN: The close cover escort for convoy PQ-17 sails from Iceland. The convoy sailed from Iceland on the 27th. The Home Fleet sailed from Scapa Flow to also provide cover on the 28th.
U.S.S.R.: Black Sea Fleet and Azov Flotilla: Shipping loss: MS “TSch-405 “Vzrivatel”” - by field artillery, close to Eupatoria (later raised) (Sergey Anisimov)(69)
Evacuation of Sevastopol is ordered by the Russian High Command. The Soviet Black Sea fleet will attempt to comply with little success.
Some 100,000 partisans are now operating against the Germans.
EGYPT: Rommel reaches El Alamein.
LIBYA: Derna: Resting Afrika Korps soldiers watched with amazement today as two Italian aircraft landed on the airport here. One disgorged the immaculate, bemedalled Benito Mussolini, Il Duce himself. The other carried a white Arab charger upon which the Italian leader proposes to lead his victorious army through the streets of Cairo in the next few days. Such is the confidence of the Axis as Rommel’s army nears the fleshpots of Egypt.
Today Rommel writes to his wife: “Only 100 more miles to Alexandria!” By nightfall, such was the speed of the German advance, the distance was down to 60 miles.
Submarine depot ship HMS Medway which was evacuating Alexandria is torpedoed and sunk by U-372 NE of Alexandria at 31 03N 30 35E. There were 30 casualties but 1105 survivors rescued by HMS Zulu and Hero. The U-boat commander kapitanleutnant Hans-Joachim Neumann was not aware of the nature of his target, believing it to be a 15,000 ton freighter, and the Germans did not learn about the loss of HMS Medway for some months. (Alex Gordon)(108)
Third Officer Audrey Coningham was one of three Wrens on board. She swam towards the destroyer HMS HERO, but so many people were crowded around the scrambling nets that she turned and swam towards another ship further off. She had been swimming for between 15 and 30 minutes when she saw two men clinging together. Only one had a lifebelt, and he was supporting the other, whose head kept disappearing beneath the waves. Even though she did not know how long she would be in the water, Audrey Coningham, who had learned lifesaving at her convent school, managed to pull off her own lifebelt and put it on the drowning man. Leading Seaman Leslie Crossman, who had injured his legs sliding across the barnacles on Medway’s upturned hull, always remembered her words: “Lie still. You’ll be alright. Trust me.”
Audrey Coningham’s selfless act enabled Crossman to stay afloat until he was rescued by a boat. while she swam to the destroyer Zulu, where, after another 20 minutes adrift, she was plucked from the water. The smallest man on board gave up his spare shirt and shorts to dress her.
Despite a recommendation from senior officers on the spot, and the strong, personal support of Admiral Sir Henry Harwood, Commander-in-Chief Mediterranean, for the immediate award of the Albert Medal (since replaced by the George Cross), it took the Honours and Awards Committee in London six months to deliberate. Eventually it was held that as a strong swimmer Coningham had not put her own life at risk, and that the witness to her bravery had helped in the rescue.
Instead Coningham was awarded a mention in despatches, and the committee recommended “some publicity”. This blithely stated that she had been swimming in the sea when she came across a drowning seaman. It did not admit that there had been Wrens in Medway or even that the ship had been lost.
CHINA: A Japanese attempt to destroy Communist headquarters in south-eastern Shansi, is defeated.
TERRITORY OF HAWAII: Admiral Chester Nimitz, Commander-in-Chief Pacific Fleet, and members of his staff board a Sikorsky XPBS-1 in Pearl Harbor, Territory of Hawaii, for a flight to San Francisco, California. The aircraft crashes as it lands at Naval Air Station Alameda, California and Nimitz suffers scratches and abrasions. (Jack McKillop)
U.S.A.: ALEUTIAN ISLANDS: (Jack McKillop) Four Japanese aircraft carriers set sail from Ominato, Honshu for the Aleutian Islands. Commanded by Rear Admiral Kakuji Kakuta, the mission of the carriers HIJMS Junyo HIJMS Ryujo, and HIJMS Zuiho HIJMS Zuikaku is to draw the American fleet out to fight south of Kiska Island.
The Japanese 5th Naval Garrison Unit consisting of the Maizura 3rd Special Landing Force, a unit of the Special Submarine Base Force with six midget submarines, a Naval Construction Unit of 750 men, a Naval Land Artillery Force with one 120 mm gun and one 150 mm gun, an AAA unit and an AAA machine gun unit, is formed on Kiska Island, Aleutian Islands.
An 11th Air Force B-17 flies weather reconnaissance over Kiska Island.
U.S.A.: On this date, the USN has 5,612 ships and district craft and 843,096 personnel consisting of 640,570 sailors; 143,528 Marines; and 58,998 Coastguardsmen. (Jack McKillop)
The armed transport SS City of Birmingham with a crew of 113 and carrying 263 passengers is sunk by U-202 about 250 miles (402 km) east of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. (Jack McKillop)
U-158 (Type IXC) is sunk west of the Bermudas, at position 32.50N, 67.28W, by depth charges from a US Mariner aircraft (USN VP-74). 54 dead (all crew lost). This last patrol of U-158 was one of the most successful in the entire war with 62,536 tons sunk. This U-boat was, however, sunk the day after claiming its last victim. (Alex Gordon)
Destroyer USS Morrison laid down.
Destroyer escort USS Robert E Peary laid down.
Submarine USS Tunny launched.
Destroyer USS Fletcher commissioned. (Dave Shirlaw)
CANADA: Tugs ordered for RCN: HMCS Haysville, Kingsville, Grenville and Lakeville. (Dave Shirlaw)
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