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Brave Rescuers

A man wearing a uniform and cap stands on the deck of a ship. He holds a pipe in his left hand. There are hills in the background.

Chief Engineer James McKinlay

The British Navy awarded this medal to James McKinlay, Chief Engineer on the SS Prospero during its efforts to rescue survivors of the Florizel disaster.

Black and white modern photograph of a metal on a ribbon.

Medal for Bravery, 1919

Some of the brave men on board the rescue ships include:

SS Terra Nova                                         SS Prospero  
Seaman Harold Clouter                    Captain Eugene Burden
Seaman Patrick Gallagher               Captain William Windsor
Seaman Loil Hann                               Chief Officer James McKinlay
Seaman George Mercer                     Second Officer Joshua Warford
Seaman John R. Moores                    Boatswain William L. Crocker
Seaman Aldolphus Morey                Steward Albert Starkes
Seaman Timothy Murphy                Seaman Sidney Giles
Seaman Charles W. Penney             Seaman Frank Walsh
Seaman Matthew Shanahan           Seaman M. Walsh
Seaman George Westcott                 Fireman W. Ashman
                                                                     Donkeyman W. O’Toole

SS Gordon C.                                                SS Hawk
Captain E. C. Perry                                  Captain Martin Dalton
Chief Engineer Robert Pierson          Seaman Daniel Ralph
Seaman Joseph Budden                        Seaman Michael Whelan

SS Home
Captain M. Day
Seaman Edgar Button
Seaman Samuel Cooper
Seaman Stephen Nash
Seaman Walter J. Nash
Seaman Walter S. Reid
Seaman Michael Woodford

Black and white modern photograph of open gold watch with inscription on one side.

Gold watch.

Captain Martin Dalton, commander of the SS Hawk, helped many survivors leave the Florizel. But on one trip, the dory he was in capsized and landed on him-it sent him to hospital once St. John’s was reached. This watch was presented to him for his rescue deeds.

Black and white archival photograph of a man with a moustache wearing a suit and tie.

Captain Nicholas Kennedy

Captain Nicholas Kennedy plays an important role in rescuing the survivors of the ill-fated Florizel. He is the Captain of the SS Terra Nova and assists in taking the survivors off of the wrecked Florizel.

Captain Nicholas Kennedy describes his rescue attempts in the New York Sunday World edition on March 24, 1918 by saying “We were capsized five times but the dory was unsinkable and we righted her each time and kept on for the stranded steamer.”

He suffers from mobility issues and “creeping paralysis” for many years after the wreck. He is forced to retire early from his career at sea and spends the last twenty years of his life paralysed and bed-ridden. He dies in 1942 at the age of 65.