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Cats #3


Alpo

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Embarked as a mascot on the battleship Bismarck, when it was sunk by the English on 27 May 1940, he was rescued by sailors of HMS Cossack who found him perched on a floating plank, many hours after the sinking. Having passed unknowingly into the ranks of the Royal Navy, he adapted to the new ship without problems. On 24 October 1941 the Cossack left Gibraltar to escort a convoy towards the United Kingdom and was torpedoed by the German submarine U-563, attempts were made to tow the ship, until sank. The survivors were transferred to the destroyer Legion, including Oscar, which was taken over by the commander of the Fortress port. A few months later on the Ark Royal they applied for a cat, as an anti-mouse weapon. So Oscar - in the meantime nicknamed Unsinkable Sam, the unsinkable Sam - took service on the aircraft carrier. Needless to say, this ship was also torpedoed by a submarine, the U-81, returning from Malta. and Oscar was once again recovered at sea, while he slept peacefully on the wreckage of a destroyed lifeboat.

He was later assigned to HMS Lightning, which of course was sunk in combat in 1943 without the cat suffering any consequences. His last embarkation was on HMS Legion (which had already picked him up after the torpedoing of HMS Cossack) but the ship was shipwrecked in 1944. Oscar, angry but in perfect health, was saved once again. Having escaped death five times, the lucky feline was now nicknamed "The Unsinkable Sam" and became very popular among English sailors. Prudently, however, the Admiralty decided to keep him well away from the sea and after an honorable discharge, entrusted him - as reported by Detlef Bluhm in the book "Long Sailing Cats" - to an institute for sailors, the House for Sailors in Belfast. Here he died a natural death in 1955.

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A unique looking kitty!

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