-H.M.S. Hood Crew Information-
Biography of Samuel Leonard Gray
Updated 13-May-2014

This service biography was written with information provided by former Hood crewman Samuel Leonard Gray of Australia. It covers his naval career. Samuel passed away on 16 March 2008. He will be deeply missed. You can read about him below and by visiting the website his grandson Craig Radcliffe's devoted to him at http://slgray.tripod.com/

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Samuel Gray aboard Hoods forecastleSamuel Gray was born on 10 January 1914 in Aldershot, Hampshire. He is known to have worked as a fitter prior to joining the Navy. He volunteered for 12 year term in the Royal Navy in December 1934, but did not enter the Navy until 22 January 1935.

Samuel was joined the Navy as a Stoker 2nd Class. His service number was KX85556. He was trained at Victory 2 from January to Aug 1935. After completing training he joined the crew of H.M.S. Hood on 30 August 1935.

During his time in Hood, the ship was stationed in the Mediterranean. He was promoted to Stoker 1st Class during this timeframe. He remained with Hood until 23 November 1937, when he returned to Victory 2. He remained there until March 1938 when he joined Enterprise. He would be assigned to both the Enterprise and Effingham for the remainder of the year.

Samuel returned to Victory 2 in February 1939. The remainder of that year saw him serve in/at Excellent (Frobisher) and return again to Victory 2. He was promoted to Acting Leading Stoker during this timeframe.

In January 1940, Samuel joined Cochrane 2 (Vega). He remained there until December 1940. In the meantime, he had been promoted to Leading Stoker. He spent the rest of the month in Pembroke 4 (Athelstone) and joined Victory 3 in mid January 1941. He served at Victory 2 in April and May 1941. The remainder of the year saw him serve in Aurora.

He joined the St Angelo (Talbot) in January 1942. Shortly thereafter he was appointed Acting Stoker Petty Officer (Ty). He returned to Victory 2 in July 1942 and remained there until July 1944. During this timeframe he was promoted to Stoker Petty Officer (Ty). From July to November 1944 he served at Drake 4 (Wivern). He then served in Cochrane 2 until June 1945.

Samuel and his wife Joan in 2007Samuel served at Victory 2 from June to December 1945. He was promoted to Stoker Petty Officer during this timeframe. He then served at Enterprise until January 1946. The remainder of the year was spent in/at Ranpura with a short time at Victory 2.

1947 saw him leave Ranpura and serve in/at Victory 2, Mercury, Victory, Resource, Victory and St Angelo (Fort). He was promoted to Petty Officer Stoker Mechanic that same year. 1948 saw him leave St Angelo and serve in/at Forth. He remained at Forth until January 1950. The remainder of 1950 saw him serve at/in Kamarata Barracks and Victory. He became a Chief Petty Officer Stoker Mechanic during this time frame.

He served most of 1951 in Implacable. He left the ship in late October to join the crew of Vanguard. He remained with Vanguard until May 1954. He then transferred to Bellerophon where he remained until December 1956. He had been promoted to Chief Mechanician (E) during that timeframe.

Samuel's next assignment was a two month assignment to Victory. He then joined the Newcastle where he remained until October 1958. He was then posted to Sultan until March 1960. The rest of that year was spent at Phoenicia and Victory. He left Victory in August 1961 and joined Bellerophone. He rejoined Victory in December 1961 and spent his final month of service there.

Samuel retired and was pensioned on 21 January 1962.

During his naval service, he received the 1939-45 Star, Atlantic Star (with France & Germany clasp), Africa Star, Pacific Star, Defence Medal, the War Medal 1939-45 and the Royal Navy Long Service & Good Conduct Medal . Sometime after the war he and his wife Joan emigrated to Australia, where he spent the remainder of his life.

Career Timeline

Ship
Rating
From
To
Victory 2
Sto 2
22 Jan '35
29 Aug '35
Hood
- . . -
30 Aug '35
4 Dec '35
- . . -
Sto 1
5 Dec '35
23 Nov '37
Victory 2
- . . -
24 Nov '37
18 Mar '38
Enterprise
- . . -
19 Mar '38
24 Aug '38
Effingham (Enterprise)
- . . -
25 Aug '38
30 Sep '38
Enterprise
- . . -
1 Oct '38
27 Oct '38
Effingham (Enterprise)
- . . -
28 Oct '38
24 Feb '39
Victory 2
- . . -
25 Feb '39
2 Jun '39
Excellent (Frobisher)
- . . -
3 Jun '39
1 Sep '39
Victory 2
- . . -
2 Sep '39
14 Oct '39
- . . -
A/Ldg Sto
15 Oct '39
23 Jan '40
Cochrane 2(Vega)
- . . -
24 Jan '40
14 Oct '40
- . . - ( - . . - )
Ldg Sto
15 Oct '40
4 Dec '40
Pembroke (Athelstone)
- . . -
5 Dec '40
16 Jan '41
Victory 3
- . . -
17 Jan '41
7 Apl '41
Victory 2
- . . -
8 Apl '41
26 May '41
Aurora
- . . -
27 May '41
5 Jan '42
St Angelo (Talbot)
- . . -
6 Jan '42
6 Feb '42
- . . - (- . . - )
A/S.P.O.(Ty)
7 Feb '42
30 Jne '42
Victory 2
 
1 Jul '42
6 Feb '43
- . . -
S.P.O.(Ty)
7 Feb '43
6 Jly '44
Drake 4 (Wivern)
- . . -
7 Jly '44
31 Oct '44
Cochrane 2 (- . . - )
- . . -
1 Nov '44
27 Jne '45
Victory 2
- . . -
28 Jne '45
20 Oct '45
- . . -
S.P.O.
21 Oct '45
5 Dec '45
Enterprise
- . . -
6 Dec '45
25 Jan '46
Ranpura
S.P.O.
26 Jan '46
11 Oct '46
Victory 2
- . . -
12 Oct '46
28 Nov '46
Ranpura
- . . -
29 Nov '46
20 Jan '47
Victory 2
- . . -
21 Jan '47
4 Mar '47
Mercury
- . . -
5 Mar '47
2 May '47
Victory
P.O.S.M.
3 May '47
8 Jul '47
St Angelo (Fort)
- . . -
9 Jul '47
31 Mar '48
Forth
- . . -
1 Apl '48
28 Jan '50
Camarata Bar (Phoenicia)
- . . -
29 Jan '50
6 Feb '50
Victory
- . . -
7 Feb '50
22 Jun '50
Keltwood (Victory)
- . . -
23 Jun '50
6 Oct '50
- . . -
C.P.O.S.M.
7 Oct '50
18 Feb '51
Implacable
- . . -
19 Feb '51
30 Oct '51
Vanguard
- . . -
31 Oct '51
2 May '54
Bellerophon
- . . -
3 May '54
16 Mch '55
- . . -
CH.M. (E)
17 Mch '55
17 Dec '56
Victory
- . . -
18 Dec '56
10 Feb '57
Newcastle
- . . -
11 Feb '57
26 Oct '58
Sultan
- . . -
27 Oct '58
7 Mch '60
Phoenicia
- . . -
8 Mch '60
27 Jul '60
Victory
- . . -
28 Jul '61
30 Aug '61
Bellerophon
- . . -
31 Aug '61
14 Dec '61
Victory
- . . -
15 Dec '61
21 Jan '62