Wartime Heritage ASSOCIATION
Ira Urban Burgess
Name: Ira Urban Burgess Rank: Able Seaman Service Number: A/4554 Service: HMCS St Croix, Royal Canadian Navy Reserve Place of Birth: Port Mouton, Queens Co., Nova Scotia Date of Enlistment: May 9, 1941 Place of Enlistment: HMCS Stadacona, Halifax, NS Height: 5 feet, 7 inches Complexion: Ruddy Hair: Brown Eyes: Blue Marital Status: Married Religion: Baptist Commemorated on Page 141 of the Second World War Book of Remembrance Displayed in the Memorial Chamber of the Peace Tower in Ottawa on March 25 Able Seaman Burgess was the son of Thomas Burgess (1861-1930) and Lucy Ann (Roy) Burgess (1876- 1946), husband of Florence M. Burgess (1914-2014) of Port Mouton, Nova Scotia, and the father of Ira Richard Burgess, born on March 25, 1944. Ira had three sisters, Mildred Vivian (Burgess) Sherman, Muriel Hilda (Burgess) Williams (), and Elva Athena (Burgess) Brooks, and two brother Aubrey M. Burgess (1896-1919), and Elmer V. Burgess (1900-1984). Ira’s parents had moved to the United States with their family in 1916, travelling by ferry from Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. For a time, the family lived in New York, and then resided in Portland, Cumberland County, Maine. Ira attended high school in Portland, Maine, where he was known as “Lefty”. He participated in track, baseball, and tennis. A fisherman by trade, he enlisted on May 9, 1941, at Halifax, NS. Ira joined the crew of HMCS St. Croix on July 14, 1942, which was originally built as USS McCook for the United States Navy and decommissioned on June 30, 1922. On December 18, 1939, she was recommissioned and transferred to the Royal Canadian Navy as HMCS St. Croix on September 24, 1940. At 21.51 hours on September 20, 1943, the HMCS St. Croix was hit in the stern by a Gnat from U-Boat U- 305 while escorting convoy ON-202 south of Iceland. The ship sank within six minutes after being hit by a T-3 coup de grâce from the same U-boat at 22.44 hours. Able Seaman Ira Urban Burgess died in the sinking. With no known grave, Able Seaman Ira Burgess is remembered on the Halifax Memorial in Point Pleasant Park in Halifax, NS. He is also remembered on a family headstone at the Port Mouton Cemetery in Port Mouton, Queens Co., NS.
Remembering World War II
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