Leading Marine Engineering Mechanic (Mechanical)
A. J. KNOWLES
A personalised tribute to
will appear here during the course of this year. As with the information below about his ship, HMS Sheffield, it will be compiled from information in the public domain. This is a debt we, the veterans of the South Atlantic Campaign, owe to the fallen. Relatives, comrades and friends are warmly encouraged to contribute material to these pages.
HMS Sheffield sailed from Portsmouth on November 19th 1981 for a patrol in the Arabian Gulf. After taking part in a major Mediterranean exercise, and four days before her planned return to Portsmouth, the ship was diverted to the South Atlantic on April 2nd 1982, within hours of the Argentine invasion of the Falkland Islands. While on forward radar picket duty about 70 miles south and east of Stanley, on Sunday May 4th, the Type 42 destroyer was struck amidships by an Exocet missile fired from Argentine Naval Super Etendard aircraft. The missile's warhead failed to explode, but the resulting fires quickly spread, and the ship had to be abandoned.
was among 20 who died in the attack. Only the body of Petty Officer David Briggs DSM was recovered; the rest lie in the ship, now a registered war grave at the position 53o04'S 56o56'W, where she sank on May 9th, whilst under tow.