Tag Archives: Moore

The Ocean Ranger: No further radio communications


Photo Credit:

The Rooms Provincial Archives : A-41-36; Ocean Ranger, Lost February 15, 1982

On February 15, 1982 at 0052 hours local time, a MAYDAY call was sent out from the Ocean Ranger, noting a severe list to the port side of the rig and requesting immediate assistance. This was the first communication from the Ocean Ranger identifying a major problem.

At 0130 hours local time, the Ocean Ranger transmitted its last message:

 ‘There will be no further radio communications from the Ocean Ranger. We are going to lifeboat stations’.

Shortly thereafter, in the middle of the night and in the midst of atrocious winter weather, the crew abandoned the rig.

All 84 crewmembers died.  56 were Newfoundlanders. Over the next four days search teams were only able to recover 22 bodies, 2 lifeboats, and 6 life rafts.

Families across Newfoundland and Labrador,  struggled to cope with the loss. In every community in the province in every church, in every school people gathered to find comfort.  At a crowded ecumenical service at the historic Basilica  Cathedral  in St. John’s, friends and relatives attended a memorial service to pay tribute and to search for answers.  The Catholic Archbishop of the province surrounded by clergy from all churches used the occasion to call on both the federal and provincial governments to establish “a joint enquiry into the terrible accident”.

Recommended Archival Collection: Two new ‘Ocean Ranger” collections are now held at The Rooms.  The David Boutcher Collection features photographs taken by David on the Ocean Ranger in 1982.  Many of the photographs feature friends and fellow crew members.  David died on the Ocean Ranger.   Also available is the Lloyd Major Collection, Lloyd was a medic on the Ocean Ranger, his 52 photographs feature individuals who worked on “The Rig”  and structural features of The Rig.

Note: Many of the individuals in these photographs have not been identified and we would welcome the assistance  of families and friends  of the victims to help us in this process

Recommended Book (Fiction): Moore, Lisa .  February. House of Anansi Press (2010).  February is a fictional exploration of the impact on one family of the 1982 sinking of the oil rig Ocean Ranger.

Recommended Book: (Non Fiction):  Heffernan, Mike (2009). Rig: An Oral History of the Ocean Ranger Disaster, Creative Publishers, St. John’s.  This is an illustrated collection of first-person accounts from former rig workers, victims’ families, government officials, media, and search and rescue crews.

Website: Royal Commission on the Ocean Ranger Marine Disaster: http://www.heritage.nf.ca/law/or_response.html


On the brutal front lines of war

Fallen Soldier’s Death Penny

Sacrifice: Young Canadians and Newfoundlanders on the brutal front lines of war

From the fields of Flanders to the shores of Gallipoli, more than 640,000 Canadians and Newfoundlanders served in the First World War. Here, from diaries, military records and letters sent home, Tu Thanh Ha retraces the wartime journeys of some of these men and women

Globe and Mail
NOVEMBER 9, 2018

When the war began, Newfoundland was still 35 years from joining Canada. A British dominion, it raised its own regiment. In St. John’s, James Moore, a 22-year-old longshoreman with a heart tattooed on his right arm, was among those who would be known as “The First Five Hundred”
Original documents:  See the personnel file for James Moore at The Rooms

Recommended Archival Collection: Search individual soldier’s files here: https://www.therooms.ca/thegreatwar/in-depth/military-service-files/introduction


A paper-mill timekeeper in the company town of Grand Falls, George Goudie was 18 when he headed to St. John’s to enlist in the Newfoundland Regiment in March, 1916. By the following spring, just a few kilometres south of the fighting at Vimy Ridge, Corporal Goudie’s unit attacked the German lines in the Battle of Arras – and were met by a brutal counterattack. The regiment had gone to battle with 521 men; it suffered 487 casualties. Cpl. Goudie was reported missing.
Original documents: See the personnel file for James Moore at The Rooms

Recommended Archival Collection: Search individual soldier’s files here:https://www.therooms.ca/thegreatwar/in-depth/military-service-files/introduction


Read the full article here:  https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/article-portraits-of-sacrifice-young-canadians-on-the-brutal-front-lines-of/