My brother was
Albert James Stanley Pring.
He joined HMS Repulse from the boys training ship HMS Impregnable in 1939.
I believe I am right in saying that the parents had to sign to allow these boys to go to sea as they were under the regulation age. I also believe that they were told that their boy service would count as full service. My father gave way and duly signed as my brother was desperate to join the Repulse. After the sinking of the ship on December 10th 1941, his story follows that of many of the other survivors, he however managed to get away from Singapore when it fell to the Japs. My parents did not hear for some considerable time as to his fate, but suddenly out of the blue they had a letter and photograph saying he was in Ceylon,
convalescing after being wounded in the leg.
My information after is a bit scanty, but I know that he was drafted to HMS Capetown and I believe returned to the U K sometime in 1943. He then joined HMS Norfolk and served on this ship until the end of the war. After shore postings he again went to sea on HMS Gambia, finishing his time in 1953. Unfortunately he started to suffer with his health and died with a
Major heart attack at the age of 58.
He always spoke of HMS Repulse as the finest ship in the Royal Navy and her Captain Tennant as the finest Skipper he ever served under. I spoke to Alan Matthews some years ago, he put me in touch with Reg Woods who remembered my brother well, they were on the same mess deck.
My brother was always
called Bert at home, but I believe he was mostly called (Taff) by his
shipmates, one of whom was his best mate Johnnie
Goode DJ/X 161816. I will process some photographs that I have of my
brother by e mail to you , one being taken with a friend when they were
doing Boy Service at HMS Impregnable. I am a member of Service Pals and
have posted these photographs in my own gallery and in the Royal Navy
there have been a number of responses, but unfortunately none which have
a direct link to him from his Repulse time. There has however been from
his time on HMS Gambia and I have spoken
to a number of his close mates from that era. As you can appreciate I
was a young lad growing up through WW11 and my brother was my hero.
He befriended a family in
or Capetown when they called there on the way to the
. Their name was Ogle and my sister, cousin and myself became pen friends
with their children and wrote to them for many years. My brother had at
least 6 or maybe 7 campaign medals, but unfortunately they went missing
at the time of his death and I have not been able to trace them.
Yours sincerely Robert J Pring,
contact Andy (webmaster) with any information.