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Then, suddenly, one came lower than the remainder. We were at full starboard wheel with the ship listing to port, doing 30 to 40 knots when we were hit by the after gun deck.
We started listing over farther, so I immediately said to the coxswain: ‘Hard a port’. He replied: ‘The ship won’t answer the wheel sir.’ I said: ‘Stop both engines.’ He replied: ‘The engines won’t answer the telegraphs sir.’ Then I realised we were going down, but as the next wave of bombers came in, I ordered: ‘Keep the guns firing.’ We started to turn over,
we turned over very quickly. At 35 knots, once you have started, you really go quickly.
Then we were upside down and I remembered the captain must be the last to leave the ship, so I held on as long as I could before diving out under the bridge and coming to the surface.
I called for the navigation officer to come up and said: ‘Swim like hell pilot, get clear.’ Then we saw a stoker, Second Petty Officer Garner, who had got up a moment before us.
He smiled and said: ‘Funny how the scum always comes to the surface on these occasions’.”
Lord Mountbatten was murdered by the Provisional IRA in 1979. A bomb went off on his yacht while he was fishing for lobsters off the coast of County Sligo.