The photo of me and my youngest brother Matthew is extra special. This is because when I joined up aged 16 he was only 8 and unfortunately my parents had just divorced. Over the next few years, I was away a lot of the time, despite this we were very close. When we came home from the Falklands I don’t have to explain the emotions everyone felt but this picture explains it all for me.
The Day the ship was hit, the shells hitting and the shrapnel exploding reminded me of someone trying to shoot the red star out of the middle of a white card at the fairground. 50 Ball bearings in a machine gun and it was over in seconds. It was only the smell of cordite that kicked us into action. LMEM Randy Randle had us ready outside the electrical distribution centre where smoke was coming out. I was at the front in my BA when he opened the inspection hatch in the bottom of the door and I started to crawl in.
Fuck that I shouted there were four to six inches of water even though we were above the waterline and sparks were flying everywhere & LMEM (L) Ged Stone pushed in took off his anti flash glove licked is hand and patted the top of the water ?Its OK Capi?. Thinking back I should of pushed him in first, I didn’t have time to think I trusted him 100% and fired in.
A burst hot water pipe which if I recall PO MEM Ray Britt isolated. I was brought back down to earth when I looked out of a hole in the ships side and I could see a big white ship maybe with a big red cross on her.
Then felt a right tit trying to plug a perfectly round hole with a softwood cheese wedge.