Hello From Lorraine.

Lorraine Blunsden
15th February 2007, 11:46
Have really joined this site as my father and Grandfather were both in the merchant navy and I have a great interest in shipping. I've heard some fantastic stories over the years and am currently trying to research my Grandfather, Captain Roderick MacDonald from the Isle of Barra, who sadly, I never met.
My father, Michael MacDonald will have a great interest in looking at this site. Some of the ships he sailed on were: Dominium Castle, Esperance Bay, Melbourne Star, Port Huon, and Port Denedin ( spellings could be out) from approx 1946-1956.
Would be really interested to hear of anyone that may remember Captain Roderick MacDonald, who died in 1941, and spent the last part of his career around Shanghai, Rangoon and Hong Kong. The last vessel I can find he was in command of, was the SS Shinhwa.
Fantastic site, and look forward to sharing memories with my Dad.
Lorraine Blunsden.

fred henderson
15th February 2007, 13:01
A warm welcome Lorraine. I hope that you and your father will get great pleasure from your membership.


15th February 2007, 13:06
Hi Lorraine and welcome.

My Grandfather also (Alan Stwewart) sailed on the Esperance Bay as Bosun. I'll find out the dates for you. Perhaps he sailed with your dad.!


Syd young
15th February 2007, 13:16
Welcome aboard Lorraine,I think that you will enjoy the banter,and the info.


15th February 2007, 14:34
Welcome aboard Lorraine quite a few Barra members in here im sure you will get some replies soon

15th February 2007, 15:11
Welcome aboard from Italy.

15th February 2007, 19:35
Welcome to SN from Lancashire Lorraine.

I am sure the members will help you if they can.

In the meantime take a good look around as you will find a great deal of background information.



15th February 2007, 23:24
Do you know which area of Barra he lived in ?

16th February 2007, 10:08
Welcome aboard Lorraine from down under in New Zealand

Lorraine Blunsden
16th February 2007, 10:35
Thanks for the welcome Liberty!
Feeling part of a very global shipping community now.
Best wishes, Lorraine from Oxted, Surrey.

16th February 2007, 11:13
Good luck with the hunt. However it would be good, as Ronnie has asked, if you could tell us where on Barra he lived. Several Barra folk and also Barra connected people on here may be able to help if you can narrow it down.
All the very best and enjoy.

Graham McMorine
16th February 2007, 14:59
Welcome to SN Lorraine,to you and your Dad. Hope the forthcoming addiction to the site reveals all the information you both seek. We welcome female interest within the community, enjoy the voyage.(Thumb)

16th February 2007, 18:58

A warm welcome to SN from Anglesey!
I hope you thoroughly enjoy the SN experience and get many happy hours entertainment from your membership. (Thumb)

Lorraine Blunsden
16th February 2007, 19:55
I have given Ronnie the details of Barra, but it was the last part of Grandads career in the Far East that I'm still trying to sort out. He was apparently buried in the Bay of Bengal. I know that at one stage his vessel was seized and he was taken and tortured in Manchuria, but did manage to return to his ship. I cannot say how wonderful everyone on this site has been, it really has been an eye opener. My Father is looking forward to seeing this site with me at the weekend. So wish I had followed a career at sea.
Regards, Lorraine.

23rd March 2007, 23:17
Hi Lorraine,
your grandfather came from a place called Grean in Barra,I knew your gran and all your aunts as they lived or visited Barra when I was young.
You still have a cousin living in Vatersay. Your Grandfather was lost at sea in the latter part of the war. His name appears on the war memorial that was errected some years ago.The local heritage centre may be able to help.
Try isleofbarra.com and go to the heritage link

best regards

Pat McCardle
23rd March 2007, 23:41
Welcome Lorraine & I am pleased to see / hear someone looking for 'History' of their families background to a life at life at sea. A very interesting thread, I hope, will bring fruition.
ATB, Pat

24th March 2007, 13:30
A belated greetings Lorraine and welcome to the site, as you see many helpful crew members on board. Bon voyage.

Lorraine Blunsden
24th March 2007, 13:57
Thank you so much for reply. I have seen my Grandfathers memorial, but I will contact the Heritage Centre. I wonder if you know my Father, Michael MacDonald, who was the youngest in the family?
My Grandmother Christina died when I was 15, and sadly my Fathers only remaining sister is Margaret(the eldest) Auntie Katie died in January this year, which was a real shock.
Do you still live in Barra?
I think my cousin Judy is in Vatersay at the moment.
It really is lovely to hear from someone who knew my Granny.
Once again, thank you for spending the time to respond.
Warm regards

Lorraine Blunsden
24th March 2007, 14:00
Thank you so much for welcome.
Never thought I would become so interested in life at sea!
Spend a little time each week looking at message board, and I'm amazed at how interesting the site is.
Best regards

Lorraine Blunsden
24th March 2007, 14:02
Thanks for welcome!
I'm certainly enjoying the site and the replies posted.

25th March 2007, 06:49
Welcome onboard to SN and enjoy the voyage

Lorraine Blunsden
25th March 2007, 10:41
Thank you for welcome!
So nice that members take the time to reply.
My Father is enjoying hearing all the news, and being without a computer himself, finds it really interesting reading about ships he's sailed on, and remembering ports of call.
Lorraine. Surrey.

Neil McInnes
19th December 2008, 10:27
Lorraine send a message to BARRAHEAD or MULDONICH I my father was very friendly with RANGOON he was a pilot in Burma who came from Barra. English name make it hard to trace as there are so many with the same name you either have a nick name (Mine is Mach Greaser) or your name your fathers and grandfathers. There is a book named Burma to Barra or vice versa which may help. There are quite fe for Barra use the site I still have a cousin Annie who lives a t Grean.

Lorraine Blunsden
19th December 2008, 13:36
Thank you very much for your reply. My fathers name is Michael and my grandfather was Roderick, I think they lived at no: 4 Grean, I hear that the house is now the ministers home. I will certainly look for that book you mention. I will let my father know this information, I know that the house my relatives lived in was known as the " Captains House" but I'm afraid I don't speak gaelic.
Will contact you again when I can get more info from dad.
Once again, thank you for replying to my thread. Still a bit unsure how to use this site.
Lorraine MacDonald.

Hugh MacLean
30th August 2014, 16:35
This is a very old thread but I see it is still partially unresolved.

Captain Roderick MacDonald (Isle of Barra) died from heart failure at sea at the age of 61 while Master of the British India Line ship SHINHWA on 2/4/1941. His last place of abode is recorded as Rangoon.
If the ship's official logbook narrative section has survived then there should be an entry recording same. The logbook for 1941 should be held at Kew in BT 381/1252.