283643, Petty Officer Stoker Harry Aldis, age 39
HMS Aboukir, Royal Navy
Killed 22 September 1914
Harry Aldis was born in Walton on 3rd April 1875, in 1891 he lived with his father Henry Aldis at 3 Maidstone Road. At the time of his death, his father lived at 43 Shorness Road Southchurch in Southend. Harry enlisted on 28th Oct 1896 in Southend for 12 years and then signed on for life in Oct 1908. He is commemorated on the Chatham Naval Memorial and the Felixstowe War Memorial.
HMS Aboukir, an old 1st Class armoured cruiser, was part of Cruiser Force C, in an area of the North Sea known as the Broad Fourteens (HMS Eurylus, HMS Cressy and HMS Hogue were the other three cruisers). HMS Eurylus had technical problems and returned to port. Early on September 22nd, 1914, the German submarine U9 under the command of Commander Otto Weddigen sighted the Cressy, Aboukir, and Hogue steaming NNE at 10 knots without zigzagging. Although the patrols were supposed to maintain 12-13 knots and zigzag the old cruisers were unable to maintain that speed and the zigzagging order was widely ignored as there had been no submarines sighted in the area during the war. HMS Aboukir was hit by a torpedo first and rolled over within half an hour of the attack. HMS Hogue was picking up survivors when she was hit by two torpedoes, sinking within 10 minutes. HMS Cressy had stopped to pick up survivors but got underway before she was hit by a torpedo and damaged. Shortly afterward, a second torpedo hit her and she sank within 15 minutes. 837 men were rescued but 1459 men were killed in total.
This image is of Harry and some of his colleagues, it is currently unclear which one is Harry.
Chatham Naval Memorial
Loss of HMS Aboukir, Cressy & Hoque