1902 - Born
With Japan entering the war, the HMS Scorpion along with two other gunboats, the ‘Grasshopper’ and ‘Dragonfly’, sailed from Hong Kong to Singapore.
The Dragonfly and Scorpion helped rescue a brigade of 2000 men cut off at Batu Pahat.
1942/02/10 - The HMS Scorpion left Singapore for Batavia, commandered by Lieutenant Commander G.C. Ashworth, R.N.V.R.
Damaged by a previous attack by Japanese Japanese aircraft, the gunboat’s speed had been restricted and lost contact with the HMS Dragonfly and HMS Grasshopper.
1942/02/14 - After covering about 70 mile to the South of Singapore, off Berhala Island in the Banka Straights, she was attacked and sunk by a Japanese destroyer at 1845 hours in position 01.25'S, 105.00'E.
The Japanese ships which attacked the Scorpion were the Japanese light cruiser ‘Yura’ and the Japanese destroyers ‘Fubuki’ and ‘Asagiri’ after being damaged by Japanese aircraft five days previously.. There were believed to be 20 survivors, although reports state 8 were picked up by the Japanese and 6 were picked up by the ‘Mata Hari’, making it a total of 14 survivors.
Transported by sea from Muntok to Palembang.
3rd April 1942
Died and buried at sea while while being transported from Muntok to Palembang.
Son of William and Mary Taylor
Husband of Florence Matilda Taylor, of Stoke, Devonport
John also left a nine-year-old daughter behind in England who he sadly never saw again. His daughter went on to marry. John has got three granddaughters, ten great-grandchildren and nine great-great-grandchildren.
Panel 66, Column 3.
PLYMOUTH NAVAL MEMORIAL
‘Singapore’s Dunkirk’ by Geoffrey Brooke
Commonwealth War Graves Commission