Surviving the Titanic, Argentina way

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The world’s most impressive shipwreck is, no doubt about it, the Titanic’s. Such is the folklore around this event that rivers and rivers of ink have been specially devoted to this matter as well as many films, including the latest Oscar winner by James Cameron.

This tragic story touched us all in many different ways, for the negligence of beauty disregarding the necessary life boats, for the tragic event that could be avoided if the route was much studied, and of course, for all tragedies that can be explained cannot be fixed, for the thousands of deaths cannot be brought back to life.

Among the exclusive list of passengers, British and Americans were the most. However, there were people from other nationalities too. Such was the case regarding two Argentineans. Not many years ago Argentineans thought that there was just one fellow citizen on board, the now famous Edgardo Andrew. However, specialists in the subject have found out about an other Argentinean citizen who was on board the night of the tragedy and did survived, Ms. Violeta C. Jessop.

This young woman who was born in the country side of Buenos Aires during the late years of 1880s had returned to her father’s homeland –Great Britain- once he had passed away. She and her mother had to work in order to survive. Her first employer was the White Star Company, where she worked as a waitress on board. The Ocean was somewhat her second home.

Her first job was on board the Olympic, one of the Titanic’s twin brothers, who in 1911 collisioned with the Hawk. On that tragic day she was on duty, and managed to come out of this tragic situation unwounded.

A few years latter, at the age of 24, she was hired as a waitress for the Titanic, considering this job not just a mere money option but far more a lifetime experience of luxury and adventure. It would be a job she would never forget, for while she was asleep, the imponent ship began to sink. She rapidly headed off to one of the lifeboats and saved her life once again. A night she would never forget.

However, she did not abandon the ocean, not even after the Titanic’s tragedy, moreover, the got enlisted at the British Red Cross during World War One and got on board an other of the Titanic’s twins, HMHS Britannic, a floating hospital ship. While crossing the waters of the Aegean sea, there was an internal explosion at the power room that damaged from the inside to the outside the ship’s structure. Likewise the Titanic, the ship flooded and sank. However the Britannic’s sinking was one of the fastest ever. For it was summer and this was a hospital ship all windows and doors were opened for air circulation; when the ship began to flood, as proven by Arquimides, air was displaced by fast running water entering the ship. She made it again, and saved her life.

Whether this is just an exotic coincidence or a row of bad luck, we’ll never know. Each of these embarkations sank differently, the first one collisioned with an other ship, the second one was severely damaged by an unseen iceberg, and the third one cracked from the inside to the outside. One can say this is not only the tragic story of a working woman, but the tragedy of the Titanic-Olympic-Britannic triplets. 



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anonymous by Ian Moules on 10/18/2008

The Britannic was sunk by a mine that had been laid a few days earlier by a German submarine.

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