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How Many People Died Onboard The Queen Mary? – Crew and Passenger List

The Queen Mary set sail in 1936 and sailed for 30 years before retiring, many people died on board during this time. During her career, she completed many transatlantic voyages and also played a big part in world war two.

The Queen Mary is now a floating hotel in Long Beach, California. I was lucky enough to stay on board the ship and I learned about the onboard deaths. There are many ghost stories told about the Queen Mary and I’m glad that I wasn’t aware of most of these until after my stay.

How Many People Died Onboard The Queen Mary?

There have been 55 reported deaths onboard the Queen Mary since the ship launched in 1936. The majority of these deaths were from natural causes. Death records were not kept during world was two so in reality the true number is likely to be higher.

The Queen Mary offers ghost tours and has taken part in many TV shows including Most Haunted.

RMS Queen Mary
Photo: David Jones

At least 16 Crew Members Died Onboard The Queen Mary

The below crew members died onboard the Queen Mary between her launch in 1936 and 1967 when she retired. There haven’t been any fatal accidents onboard the Queen Mary since she has been used as a hotel.

If a crew member was unwell they would be taken to a hospital on land which is perhaps why no natural causes deaths have been reported within the crew since 1967.

Year of DeathCrew Members NamePosition OnboardCause of Death
1936A.J.G GoldingSeamanSkull Fracture
1944P.A.W HughesNight StewardNatural Causes
1949W.E StarkSenior 2nd OfficerAccidental Poisoning
1950W. HumphriesFiremanNatural Causes
1951A.J LeeTrimmerMan Overboard
1951J.R MaloneyMaster at ArmsNatural Causes
1952H. HealeyAssistant BarkeeperNatural Causes
1955G. MartinBedroom StewardNatural Causes
1956BonniciStewardNatural Causes
1956K. ThomsonTrimmerNatural Causes
1959A.E BoylandMan Overboard
1962A. BaughMaster at ArmsNatural Causes
1964F. RoylNatural Causes
1966C. McCarthySeamanAccidental Fall
1966J. PedderFiremanAccidentally Crushed
1967L. HorsburghCookNatural Causes

Queen Marys Watertight Door 13 Claimed The Life of J. Pedder in 1966

On July 10th, 1966 an 18-year-old crew member called J. Pedder was crushed to death by a watertight door. The mechanical door was located in the engine room and the ship was sailing across the Atlantic at the time.

The accident happened during a routine safety drill.

This area of the ship is claimed to be one of the most haunted placed on the ship, the mechanical door was removed when the Queen Mary was converted into a hotel.

W.E Stark Accidentally Poisoned Himself

In 1949 W.E Stark accidentally poisoned himself by drinking some acid that he believed to be Gin. W.E Stark instantly released his mistake and reported the accident to the captain’s steward.

Upon hearing about the accident W.E Stark was told to go to the onboard doctor to have his stomach pumped, he refused and by all accounts he laughed and joked about the incident. Three days later he died of Carbon Tetrachloride poisoning.

W.E Stark had been at sea all of his life, starting working on Cargo ships when he was 17 years old.

RMS Queen Mary

At least 41 Passengers Died Onboard The Queen Mary

Year of DeathPassengers NameCause of Death
1937Mr. P ChapmanNatural Causes
1937UnknownUnknown
1939Mr. F BrandtNatural Causes
1943Capt H.L FryUnknown
1945P.H Ashburn USNMan Overboard
1946Pvt E.W SimonsNatural Causes
1946L.T SmithNatural Causes
1947Gypsey Rodney SmithUnknown
1949Mr. H.M SichelNatural Causes
1949UnknownUnknown
1950Mr. W.H BarrettNatural Causes
1950Mr. H.C BazettNatural Causes
1950Mr. P.H DaviesMan Overboard
1950UnknownUnknown
1951D.J MartinNatural Causes
1951Mr. A KacserNatural Causes
1953Mr. M. ShieldNatural Causes
1954Mrs. M.A FerrisNatural Causes
1954Mr. G.S WaymanNatural Causes
1955Mr. P.P O’SullivanNatural Causes
1955Mrs. L.I FordNatural Causes
1956Mr. W.E ShottNatural Causes
1956Mr. D.B BlaisdellNatural Causes
1956Mrs. L. SominoUnknown
1956Mr. O.S RedfieldUnknown
1959Mrs. F. ButhmanAccidental Death
1963UnknownUnknown
1964Rev. G. StutzerNatural Causes
1964Mrs. E. GriffinNatural Causes
1964Mr. W.H PopeNatural Causes
1965Mr. A.E.N ClarkNatural Causes
1966Mrs. C.N NicholsonNatural Causes
1966Mrs. H. KellerNatural Causes
1966Mrs. F. TeasdaleUnknown
1966Mr. A. KondratieffNatural Causes
1966Mr. J. OwenNatural Causes
1966Mr. G. W McCreeryNatural Causes
1967Mr. A. MeredithNatural Causes
Mrs. A. WaringNatural Causes

In 1942 The Queen Mary Sank The HMS Curacoa Causing 300 Deaths

The following deaths didn’t occur onboard the Queen Mary but were caused by the Queen Mary.

The HMS Curacoa was built for the Royal Navy during the first world war. She was acting as an escort for the RMS Queen Mary in 1942 when the Queen Mary accidentally cut through the HMS Curacoa.

At the time of the accident, the Queen Mary was carrying 10,000 troops and was sailing in a zig-zag pattern to evade submarine attacks.

HMS Curacoa
HMS Curacoa

Both the Queen Mary and the HMS Curacoa thought that they had the right of way.

I said to my mate “You know she’s zig-zagging all over the place in front of us, I’m sure we’re going to hit her.”

And sure enough, the Queen Mary sliced the cruiser in two like a piece of butter, straight through the six-inch armored plating. 

Alfred Johnson (Onboard the Queen Mary) source.

The Queen Mary was sailing at considerable speed (around 25 knots) and she had to carry on after hitting the HMS Curacoa. It was the policy at the time that for safety reasons, the ship could not stop to pick up survivors as the threat of U-Boats was present.

Accounts differ as to whether the ship did stop to help survivors or not.

The case did go to court a few years later and the Queen Mary was cleared of any blame. It estimated that over 300 people died in the accident.

Continue Learning:

Ever wondered how the Queen Mary compared to the Titanic? In this post we compare the size, speed and function of the two famous ships:

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