No. 233149, Inland Water Transport, Royal Engineers
Drowned at sea on Thursday 10 May 1917 (aged 41)
Cloughey Presbyterian Church Graveyard, Co. Down (Grave 182 at North end)
Canadian Virtual War Memorial (CVWM)
Canadian First World War Book of Remembrance
Edward Atkin was born in Liverpool, England and he moved to Canada.
Edward Atkin enlisted in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
During the First World War Corporal Edward Atkin (No. 233149) served with No 1 Operative Section, Inland Water Transport, Royal Engineers and he was drowned at sea on 10 May 1917.
Corporal Edward Atkin was a crew member aboard HMS PT 1 that left Glasgow on 9 May 1917. Next day, when off the Isle of Man, the weather progressively worsened and a gale sprang up from the south-east. The ship began to labour heavily and fill up with water. The pumps were unable to keep pace with the ingress of water and at 9.30 pm the lifeboats were ordered away.
The lifeboat at the starboard side got safely away but before the lifeboat at the port side could get clear, a heavy sea washed her under the sponson, throwing the occupants into the water.
Six men were rescued by the starboard lifeboat and six were drowned.
Corporal Edward Atkin’s body was washed ashore at Cloughey Bay on 22 May 1917 and he was buried in Cloughey Presbyterian Church Graveyard; his grave has a Commonwealth war Graves Commission (CWGC) headstone.
In official correspondence after Corporal Atkin’s death it was noted that his next-of-kin was his son Albert who was serving with the South Lancs Imperial Army and that an allotment was paid to Mrs A. Eaton, 551 Hornby Street, Vancouver (Corporal Atkin’s address on enlistment).
Lance Corporal Thomas Slade Swanger was another casualty from the sinking of HMS PT 1. His body was washed ashore at Ballyhalbert and he was buried in Movilla Cemetery, Newtownards.