Who was the Captain of the SS Flying Enterprise which sunk off Cornwall in early 1952?
The Flying Enterprise experienced heavy weather damage during a storm in January 1952 in the English Channel just close to Falmouth - UK. The vessel was build in 1944 as a Liberty cargo vessel Type C1-B of 6711 tons capacity.
The vessel was enroute from Hamburg ,Germany to the United States.
The heavy swell experienced from the North Atlantic caused her cargo of Pig Iron/Coffee and General cargo loads of any type and any tonnage to shift and she starting to roll heavily between 50 and 70 degree. At the end she was lying 90 degree on her side and the funnel taking in water.
The vessel was slowly sinking however the Danish born Captain stayed with the vessel for 13 days before it finally went below the waves.
She was at the time under tow of the salvage tug Turmoil. By this time the mate was transferred back to the vessel as she was listing 60 degree already. Both abandoned the vessel whilst lying on her side just before she sank.
The vessels crew plus passengers were transported by lifeboats to the US Transport vessel USS General A.W. Greely, which was standing by the casualty. One Passenger drowned during the rescue.
This was news around the world and Capt Carlsen became a hero as he refused to abandon the vessel until the very last moment.
Captain Carlsen was buried on the 8th February 1990 at sea over the wreck at his request.
Captain K Carlsen was later awarded a Lloyd's Silver Medal for Meritorious Service.