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When it was near its prey, the raider unmasked its hidden armament and with overwhelming force destroyed the ...
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When it was near its prey, the raider unmasked its hidden armament and with overwhelming force destroyed the target ship. Only seven of the forty-one man crew of the Anglo-Saxon managed to get into a small boat and escape the raiders. Seventy days later, two of them, half dead, stumbled ashore in the Bahamas.
The account of the sailors' ordeal -- how first the badly wounded and then the less strong died and were thrown over the side of a fragile boat that had almost no supplies -- is suspenseful and riveting.
On the same day the two survivors reached the Bahamas, the Widder arrived off Brest, in occupied France, her murderous voyage over. Her captain, Hellmuth von Ruckteschell, who sank a staggering twenty-five ships, was eventually tried as a war criminal.
All Brave Sailors is a story of endurance, heroism, brutality, and survival under the most terrible circumstances. It fills a gap in the history of World War II, telling the story of the much neglected sailors and the ships of the merchant marine, fighting against great odds in the early days of the war.
Part I: FATE
2. The Catalyst
3. The British
4. The Germans
6. The Widder at Sea and at War
7. Paths to War
8. The Raider Strikes
Part II: FORTITUDE
9. Speck in the Ocean
10. Drastic Choices
11. Desperate Decisions
14. Warrior Widder
Part III: DESTINIES
16. Return, Redemption, and Reward
18. Homeward Bound
19. Wounded Warrior
20. Michel -- The Ship and the Man
21. War Criminal
22. Haunted Hero
Appendix A: Comparable Naval Ranks
Appendix B: The Log of the Anglo-Saxon Jolly Boat