The Liverpool Navy ship and the deaths of 12 people

A 40th anniversary service will commemorate those who died on a Liverpool Merchant Navy ship during the Falklands War.

The city-registered Atlantic Conveyor, owned by Cunard and Atlantic Container Line, was struck by an Argentinian Exocet on May 25, 1982 and killed 12 people. A wreath laying ceremony will take place on Wednesday, the anniversary of the attack, at the Merchant Navy Memorial on Liverpool’s Pier Head.

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Afterwards, there will be a memorial service at St. Nicholas Church whose gardens include a memorial to the Atlantic Conveyor. The Atlantic Conveyor was the first British merchant ship lost to enemy fire since the First World War.

Nine members died in the water, including Captain Ian North, and three crew members were killed on board. Captain North was posthumously awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for his actions which enabled 137 of the 149 crew members to survive.

Andrew J. Abbott, President and CEO of ACL, said, “I have had the pleasure of meeting Captain North on several occasions for ship parties and staff training sessions. He was the quintessential British captain: an expert on every aspect of his ship, close to all his officers and crew, always helpful, always witty, always professional.

“I remember the shock I felt the day we learned that we had lost him and so many of his crew. I remember the shock I felt when I learned that the conveyor had fallen broken-down.

“It’s one thing to read about events in the history books, but the impact is different when you know the people and have walked the ship. Let us always remember and honor those brave men who lost their lives forty years ago. Their country called and they answered. May they rest in peace.”

The Falklands War lasted over two months between April 2, 1982 and June 14, 1982. The 74 Day War began after Argentine forces invaded and occupied British territory.

The lives of 255 British servicemen, 649 Argentine soldiers and three Falkland Islander civilians were lost during the conflict. A referendum on the island was held in 2013 on whether it should continue to be part of the United Kingdom.

Out of a turnout of more than 90%, 1,513 people voted in favor of keeping the United Kingdom against three votes against.

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