Merchant Seamen remembered with wreath-laying in Torrevieja (Alicante) on September 4

Merchant Seamen remembered in wreath-laying in Torrevieja (Alicante) on September 4

HONOURING SEAMEN: Joe Billet, Pastor Krista and David Heaney Photo credit: Orihuela Costa and District Branch The Royal British Legion in Spain

MERCHANT NAVY DAY was celebrated in Torrevieja on Sunday, September 4.

Former seaman and D-Day Veteran Joe Billet laid a wreath at the La Siesta church’s Jardin de Memoria in honour and remembrance of the sacrifices made by the often-forgotten and invisible but very hard-working seafarers.

The tribute simply read, “To the 60,000 Merchant Seamen who lost their lives during the Second World War. RIP.”

Pastor Krista, the recently-installed Iglesia Evangélica Española minister, read a short tribute as Pipe Sergeant David Heaney of the Torrevieja Pipes and Drums played a lament.

The commemoration was attended by members of La Siesta Evangelical congregation, which included former Merchant Navy captain, Howard Cook.

Merchant Navy Day honours those who kept Britain afloat during both World Wars. It also celebrates the dependence on modern-day merchant seafarers, which although they are a civilian service, undoubtedly rank on the same level as the Armed Forces, because of its critical role.

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Written by

Linda Hall

Originally from the UK, Linda is based in Valenca and is a reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering local news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at