The Japanese sank 18 vessels and attacked another 15, during WWII, killing 277 merchant mariners and 223 medical personnel, as well as attacking the Sydney and Newcastle coastline.
In 1940-41 German mines sunk four vessels, killing 16, and a German submarine sank a vessel in 1944, killing two. Fourteen Newcastle men were among 23 lost when the Iron Crown was torpedoed en route from Whyalla to Port Kembla on June 4 1942. The Iron Chieftain was sunk a day earlier. The same Japanese submarine had earlier it had damaged Barwon. On July 22 the Allara was hit by the Japanese. It was repaired in Newcastle but five men who died during the attack are buried in Sandgate General Cemetery. Japanese Submarine I-21 which sunk Iron Knight had previously sunk Kalingo on January 18, 1943.
During World War II the sea was the main transport route, bringing to Newcastle the raw materials needed by its industries and taking away the industries products, as well as Hunter coal. Japanese submariner operated along the east coast of Australia from May to August 1942 and January to June 1943.
Every June Newcastle residents gather on the harbour to honour their dead. The Jordons were among them. This is there story.