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Christmas lights dimmed to remember the Solomon Browne

Christmas lights dimmed to remember the Solomon Browne

Published by Sarah Yeoman at 5:12pm 19th December 2018.

The Christmas lights in Mousehole are being dimmed to remember those who lost their lives in the Penlee lifeboat tragedy.

It is 37 years since her eight crew drowned trying to rescue the people on board a stricken freighter off the Cornish coast.

The Solomon Browne battled 100mph winds and 60ft high waves, but never made it home.

The tragedy left 12 children in the village without their dads, just days before Christmas.

The Christmas lights will be dimmed between 8pm and 9pm on 19th December, as a mark of respect.

solomon browne 1

Cornishman Nigel owned one of the fishing boats called to help, the morning after the lifeboat was lost.

He said: "Everybody always knew the lifeboat men. At the end of the day, we know that they would always turn up, regardless of the weather, they would come and find you and rescue you; we knew that of them.

"But you have to remember, it wasn't just a lifeboat crew - the entire crew of the Union Star lost their lives that day.

"It took a while to unfold and it was difficult really.

"As soon as we could, those boats that were able to were clearly out and about from the harbour trying to aid and help, but the weather was still horrendous".

solomon browne 3

Within a day of the disaster, Mousehole had formed a new lifeboat crew - but the memory of those who lost their lives continues.

"On this day 37 years ago, six days before Christmas, these eight lifeboat volunteers launched the Solomon Browne from Penlee Lifeboat Station against hurricane winds to rescue the crew of the 1,400 ton coaster Union Star.

"Tragically, they along with the eight people on the Union Star all lost their lives.

"Gone but never forgotten, today we honour those that gave their lives to save others."

RNLI

solomon browne 2

"When you wake this morning please take a few minutes to remember the eight extremely brave, fearless and selfless lifeboatmen, all sons of Mousehole, who made the ultimate sacrifice on the 19th December 1981.

"Their courage, dedication, determination, valour and heroism serves as a beacon to us all.

"Gone but never forgotten... greater love hath no man."

Penlee Lifeboat

'The Ballad of Lifeboat 954' was written in memory of the Solomon Browne, by choir leader Pete Truin.

It tells the story of that dramatic rescue and pays tribute to the heroic crew who made the ultimate sacrifice that night, and the families that they left behind.

Watch the emotional video...

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