George Turner Paton

Military Information

  • Date of enlistment: February 1905
  • Place of enlistment:
  • Service no: 221513
  • Rank: Leading Seaman
  • Service Occupation:
  • Awards:
  • Regiment/Service: H.M.S. Mary Rose
  • Unit/Ship: Royal Navy
  • Place of Death: Lost at Sea
  • Age at Death: 29
  • Date of Death: 17.10.1917
  • Burial Country:
  • Cemetery: Chatham Naval Memorial
  • Grave/Mem Ref no: Panel 21

Personal Information

  • Date of Birth:
  • Place of Birth:
  • Address: 6 Bernard Street, Dundee
  • Occupation:
  • Mother:

    Betsy Stewart Paton

  • Father:

    David Paton

  • Siblings:
  • Spouse:

    Mary Crowlie Paton, 1 Westfield Ave, Dundee

  • Children:

    Bertie, born 28.01.1916 & Mary Rose, born 22.05.1918

More about George Turner Paton

George T Paton was the son of Mr David Paton and Mrs Betsy Stewart Paton, of Dundee and was married to Mrs Mary Crowlie Paton of 6 and later, 10 Bernard Street, Dundee. He was a Jute Mill Worker when, in February 1905, he volunteered to join the Royal Navy and trained onboard HMS Caledonia, an old ship of the line, moored in the River Forth. Over the next 12 years he was drafted to several warships including HM Ships Minotaur, Dido, Actaeon, Illustrious, Indomitable, Vindictive and Vulcan. He was serving on this last ship at the outbreak of war until May 1915 when he was drafted to HMS Matchless, a destroyer based with the Harwich Force. In November a German mine blew off Matchless’s stern and the ship towed to Chatham for repairs. After a few months in the Naval Base he was drafted to another destroyer, HMS Mary Rose in January 1916. In October 1917 the Mary Rose was sunk defending a convoy on passage to Norway from two German Cruisers. HMS Strongbow, another destroyer, and nine merchant ships were also sunk. George T Paton is commemorated on the Chatham Naval Memorial in Kent and on the St Mary Magdalene/Holy Trinity Memorial in Dundee.

H.M.S. Mary Rose was an M-Class Destroyer and was escorting a Convoy from Norway when they were attacked and sunk by German Cruisers “Brummer” & “Breme” in the North Sea approx 70 miles east of Lerwick. The German Cruisers went on to sink 9 of the 12 ships in the convoy including the Mary Rose.

George Turner Paton    221513   Royal Navy

PATON—Killed in a naval engagement off the Shetland Islands, on 17th October, 1917, George Turner Paton, Leading Seaman, of H.M.S. Mary Rose, son of the late David Paton, of H.M.S. Unicorn. – Inserted by his mother and Mrs Paton and child, Mrs Paton, 10 Bernard Street, Dundee.

Dundee People’s Journal 3rd November 1917


                                                                                                                            Christiania, Saturday.

A message from Bergen says:–Ten men of the crew, two of them officers, of the British destroyer Mary Rose have arrived here.  They are quartered on board the Norwegian steamer Nordstjornen.  It is stated that the men will be interned, as they were saved by a Norwegian lifeboat.  Probably they are the sole survivors of the crew of the Mary Rose, which numbered 96 men.

The vessel went down after a heroic fight, lasting half an hour, with the German cruisers.  After the destruction of their convoy off the Shetlands they were saved by a lifeboat belonging to the Norwegian steamer Solja while clinging to two buoys.  It is stated here that the Mary Rose was the only destroyer which accompanied the convoy.

The Press Association adds :–The communique issued by the British Admiralty stated that all the 88 officers and men on H.M.S. Mary Rose were lost.

Dundee Courier 22nd October 1917

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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