On 30 Dec 1943, U-545 (Mannesmann) fired four torpedoes at convoy ON-217 in 60°30N/24°35W and heard four detonations. Mannesmann claimed hits on four ships and observed one ship sinking on 1 January. However, the only ship hit was Empire Housman (Master David John Lewis), which did not sink after this attack.
At 03.55 hours on 3 Jan 1944 the Empire Housman, now straggling from convoy, was hit by two torpedoes from U-744 and foundered two days later. One crew member was lost. The master, 37 crew members and seven gunners were picked up by HMS Elm (T 105) (Lt K.A. Grant) and HMS Earner (W 143) and landed at Reykjavik.
The following names are listed at the
Merchant Navy Memorial at Tower Hill
This is not Empire Housman but a vessel of identical design