Story: Seafarers

A fireman under fire

Jim Blundell was born in Napier in 1924. In May 1943, aged 19, he got a job in the engine room of a British refrigerated cargo ship, the Port Fairy. Two months later, while the ship was sailing in convoy off Portugal with the troopships Duchess of York and California, German bombers struck. In this recording, Jim describes the aftermath of that attack. He went on to serve on ships plying between Britain, Argentina, New Zealand and the United States. Eventually he joined an American ship supplying US forces in the Pacific and obtained a US fireman’s certificate (shown here).

Jim Blundell, interview by Neill Atkinson, 22 April 2004, History Group, Ministry for Culture and Heritage

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Manatū Taonga – Ministry for Culture and Heritage, History Group

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How to cite this page:

Neill Atkinson, 'Seafarers - The seafaring workforce', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 17 May 2022)

Story by Neill Atkinson, published 12 Jun 2006