Ninety-three years ago today, on April 14, 1912, the RMS Titanic struck an iceberg while sailing on her maiden voyage from Southhampton to New York. Of the approximately 2,223 passengers and crew on board, there were only 705 survivors.
Two very notable people who distinguished themselves on this fateful night were from the local area where Sarah and I currently reside. The ship's very talented bandleader, Wallace Hartley, was born and raised just a few miles away in the town of Colne. He and his fellow musicians calmed the passengers with their music, playing their instruments right up to the Titanic's final minutes afloat. A monument honoring the memory of Mr. Hartley was constructed not far from Colne's municipal hall. Also keeping order, and doing his best to save as many people as possible, was Second Officer Charles H. Lightoller. A native of nearby Chorley, "Lights" would go on to distinguish himself 28 years later when he navigated his personal cabin cruiser to the shores of Dunkirk in 1940, successfully saving the lives of many British soldiers who were fleeing the advancing Nazi onslaught.
Tonight, Sarah and I shall raise a glass and toast the memory of Titanic and all who sailed upon her. I hope that if the opportunity presents itself, you will all pause and take a moment to do the same.