David Morrison Kennedy

Military Information

  • Date of enlistment:
  • Place of enlistment:
  • Service no:
  • Rank: First Officer
  • Service Occupation:
  • Awards:
  • Regiment/Service: S.S. Burutu
  • Unit/Ship: Mercantile Marine
  • Place of Death: Lost at Sea
  • Age at Death: 27
  • Date of Death: 03.10.1918
  • Burial Country:
  • Cemetery:
  • Grave/Mem Ref no:

Personal Information

  • Date of Birth:
  • Place of Birth:
  • Address: 14 Thomson St, Dundee
  • Occupation:
  • Mother:
  • Father:

    William Kennedy, 14 Thomson St, Dundee

  • Siblings:
  • Spouse:
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More about David Morrison Kennedy

David was serving aboard S.S.Burutu which was a British Merchant steamer of 3,863grt built in 1902 and owned by the Elder-Dempster Line. On 3 October 1918 she was sunk when she collided with S.S. City of Calcutta when off the coast of South Wales about 25 miles SW of Bardsey Island, With the  loss of 148 lives. She was on route from Freetown for Liverpool with passengers and a general cargo.

David Morrison Kennedy   First Officer   Mercantile Marine

Official intimation has been received that Mr David M. Kennedy, second officer of the Burutu, was drowned when that vessel was lost.  Mr Kennedy had been ten years at sea, and had the reputation of being a skilful navigator.  He served his apprenticeship in the Den Line.  Mr Kennedy was the younger son of Mr and Mrs Wm. Kennedy, 14 Thomson Street, Dundee.

Dundee Courier 18th October 1918

David M Kennedy, born in 1892, was the son of Mr and Mrs William Kennedy, 14 Thomson Street, Dundee. He studied at the Dundee Navigation School (Roll No 1844) and served for 10 years with the Elder Dempster Line. He received Board of Trade Certificate No 007122 for Master and First Mate in Dundee on 24 Feb 1914. The Peoples Journal of 19th October 1918 reported that he was a skilled Navigator. The Dundee City Roll of Honour records the Royal Mail Steamship Burutu as Burutee. On 10 April 1918 the Burutu (which was defensively armed) was damaged by the German U-boat U-154. The U-boat was fought off by gunfire 14 miles south west off Cape Mesurado in Liberia, West Africa. Two members of the Burutu’s crew were killed. Arrangements were made for a temporary refit in Freetown, Sierra Leone, and for the return of the vessel to Liverpool. The Burutu was sunk in the St Georges Channel after a collision with the SS City of Calcutta which was travelling in another darkened convoy and over 150 lives were lost. Merchant seamen whose loss cannot be attributed to enemy actions are not listed in Commonwealth War Graves Commission memorials or the Tower Hill Memorial. However, a Memorial in St Saviours church, Lagos, Nigeria, is dedicated to those lost in the Burutu sinking and whose graves are not known or cannot be maintained .

Iain Stewart and Iain Birnie

Information supplied by Gary Thomson, additional information kindly supplied by Michael Caldwell

Further information supplied by Iain Stewart and Iain Birnie

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