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100th anniversary of the sinking of RMS Leinster remembered

RMS Leinster was sunk by a German U-Boat 100 years ago yesterday
Connla Young

THE 100th anniversary of the sinking of a ship that claimed more than 560 lives in the closing days of World War One was marked with a series of events yesterday.

The RMS Leinster sank after being struck by torpedoes fired by a German U-boat on October 10 1918.

The ship had left Carlisle Pier in Kingstown (now Dún Laoghaire) for Holyhead in Wales with 771 people on board when the Germans attacked.

Many of those who died were military personnel from across the globe including Britain, Canada, United States, New Zealand and Australia.

There were also 180 civilian passengers, including men, women and children, onboard the ill-fated vessel. Over 140 military personnel who perished are buried in Grangegorman Military Cemetery in Dublin.

A series of events have been arranged to mark the anniversary of the ship's sinking.

Relatives of those who died were brought to the wreck site, just outside Dublin Bay, yesterday where wreaths were laid and flowers thrown into the sea.

An Post staff observed a minute's silence yesterday morning in memory of the 21 postal staff who were lost on the ship.

A new exhibition, '13 minutes to disaster, the sinking of the RMS Leinster', will be held in the Phoenix Park Visitor Centre until the end of the month.

Kevin 'Boxer' Moran TD, Minister of State for the Office of Public Works (OPW) and Flood Relief said: "This important exhibition chronicles this terrible tragedy as we mark its centenary and I would encourage anyone with an interest in the history of this period to go along and learn about the disaster and to attend the talks which are scheduled this month".

The U-boat that torpedoed the Leinster is believed to have struck a mine in the North Sea on October 19, 1918, with the loss of 36 lives.

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