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Community Voice: Cayman Islands contribution to World Wars I and II

Community 02 Nov, 2020 Follow News

Captain Owen Farrington

As the time of honouring the sacrifices made by some of our Seafarers paying the ultimate sacrifice gets near, we try to remember other ways in which the Cayman Islands assisted our allies.

I remember the Cayman Islands being asked by the British authorities to send schooners to Jamaica to load food supplies for our friends in Belize, as they had no vessels and were getting short on food. The British Navy was busy keeping the Germans from destroying these small islands.

I was ten years old in 1942 and got my father to take me on the schooner Jemsons with him to Jamaica. I enjoyed every time the dolphins would swim along side of the vessel, and then swim ahead of the vessel. I did not go to Belize.

Each vessel had to identify themselves, so large letters and numbers were sewn on the sails so, when an airplane flew over, they knew from the numbers and letters the name of the vessel.

So, the Cayman Islands played a role in helping the allies in a small way, but the people in Belize were grateful for the Cayman vessels bringing them food. I am not sure how many vessels were used in this mission, but remember the schooner Allison was another one.

I urge all Caymanians to not only buy a poppy, but try and attend the Remembrance service. I hope all those who like to call Cayman home will do the same.

With gratitude to the families of the Heroes,

Captain Owen Farrington


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