I got this comment last week from Norm Gervais, but I did not have time to post something on the blog.
Mon père Jacques Gervais peut-être nommé comme James Gervais était je crois CPO lors de l’attaque. Il a dit très peu de choses lorsque il vivait au sujet de l’événement. Il doit sûrement sa vie au fait qu’il a été très sérieusement blessé et que à cause de ses blessure il a été placé dans un canot de sauvetage. Il paraitrait que plusieurs des marins non blessés ont dû s’accrocher au radeau parce qu’il n’y avait pas de place dans le canot. Certains de ceux-ci auraient été attaqué par des requins alors que d’autres seraient décédés à cause de l’eau froide. Mon père a été un de ceux qui n’a pas été fait prisonnier mais secouru par HMCS HAIDA.
My father Jacques Gervais, maybe going by the name James Gervais was I believe CPO (Chief Petty Officer) during the attack. He said very little about the event when he was living. He surely owed his life by the fact that he was very seriously injured, and because of this was put aboard a lifeboat. It would seem that several uninjured sailors had stayed in the water, and had to hold on to the lifeboat because there was not enough place. Some of them would have been attacked by sharks while others died of hypothermia. My father was one of those not taken prisoner but rescued by HMCS HAIDA.
The name James Gervais or Jacques Gervais is not on the list found in the book Unlucky Lady.
This is the second time someone has written me about the list being incomplete.
MANNIX, George Henry RCN, Ret’d. Dad left us peacefully on January 16, 2015 at the age of 93 at The Lodge at Broadmead. He was surrounded by the family he loved. He is survived by the love of his life and his wife of 68 years, Ruth (nee Farquhar). He is also survived by his four children Julie (Larry), Len (Glenda), Matt (Lorraine), Liz, nine grandchildren, Sarah (Mike), Emily (Chris), Nolan, Roland (Kari), Megan (Brandon), Spencer (Jessie), Jordan, Kevin and Lauren. He was delighted with the arrival of great-granddaughter, Audrinna last year. George is also survived by his sisters, Blanche Hilborne of Victoria and Kathy Parry of Winnipeg and numerous relations in BC, Calgary and Winnipeg. Although he spent many years travelling the world with the Navy, he loved his home and family. He could be found in his garden in later years and continued travelling to unique locations in Canada and abroad. In his earlier years he loved the outdoors where he hunted and fished with his sons and the dog, Louie.
He was a much decorated World War II veteran having served on HMCS Haida on the Murmansk Run and in the English Channel in the days prior to and during D-Day. He then joined the HMCS Ontario and sailed to Hong Kong for the Japanese Surrender, via Burma, and finally after 4 and 1/2 years returned home to Victoria. He again volunteered for service in the Korean War and later was part of the Spithead Review in England for the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. In 1958, he served as her standard bearer during her visit to B.C. He retired from the RCN as a Chief Petty Officer 1st Class after serving 25 years.
He worked 10 years for the Federal Government. He was active in many associations like The Burma Star and CPOs but his focus was always family. He and Mum enjoyed attending reunions in Canada and England. We want to thank the staff of The Lodge at Broadmead for their excellent care and compassionate support of Dad and our family. Dad’s service will be at First Memorial, 4725 Falaise Drive on Tuesday, January 27, 2015 at 2:00 p.m. Flowers are gratefully declined. Memorial donations can be made to The Lodge at Broadmead.
Someone else had remembered George Mannix from the morning of 29 April 1944 on, and for the rest of his life.