STREAMS, Albert Edward
Honours & Awards:
Friday, June 5, 1903
Saturday, July 10, 1943
Killed in action or died of wounds
Marine Albert Streams, A.M., died during operations at Sicily.
Albert Streams enlisted on the 12th April 1921 with the RM Light Infantry, Plymouth Division. He was awarded the Albert Medal for his gallantry as a crew member on board HMS Devonshire on the 26th July 1929 after a massive explosion in one of the gun turrets on the ship. Although injured himself in the blast he remained behind to help evacuate the wounded and dying.
Extract from London Gazettes
H.M.S. " Devonshire" was carrying out full calibre firing on 26th July, 1929, when at the first salvo there was a heavy explosion which blew off the roof of one of the turrets. Marine Streams was the only man in the gun house who was not either killed instantly or fatally injured. He was seriously shaken by the explosion and instinctively climbed to the top of the side plating to escape but, on arriving at the top he looked back and saw the conditions inside the turret, and deliberately climbed back into it amidst the smoke and fumes notwithstanding the grave risk of further explosions. He then helped to evacuate the one remaining man of the right gun's crew, and took charge and played a major part in evacuating the crew of the Fire Control cabinet. When all the wounded were out he collapsed. His bravery, initiative and devotion to duty were beyond praise.
Lieutenant-Commander Maxwell-Hyslop was in the fore control when the explosion occurred, and immediately proceeded to the turret and climbed inside. He made a general examination of the turret, and descended the gun well through most dangerous conditions of fumes and smoke, necessitating the use of a life line, remaining in the turret until the emergency was over, directing arrangements for the safety of the magazine, and supervising the evacuation of the wounded. He was fully aware of the danger to himself from the results of cordite fumes, and the grave risk of further explosions.
At the time this officer and man entered the turret the fire produced by the explosion was still burning and it was impossible to estimate the real state of affairs due to the heavy smoke. They both were fully aware that there were other cordite charges in the hoist and handing room below which might ignite at any moment with almost certain fatal results to themselves, and they deliberately endangered their own lives to save the lives of others.
National Archives file ADM159/168/21038.
London Gazette 33553, page 7456.
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