Page 38 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 6 - 9
P. 38
6076. Did you feel that you were dragged under or did you keep on the top of the water? - I do not believe my head went under the water at all. It may have been wetted, but no more. 6077. Are you a good swimmer? - Yes. 6078. How long do you think you were in the water before you got anything to hold on to? - I did not attempt to get anything to hold on to until I reached a collapsible, but that was daylight. 6079. Daylight, was it? - I do not know what time it was. 6080. Then you were in the water for a long, long time? - I should say over two hours, Sir. 6081. Were you trying to make progress in the water, to swim, or just keeping where you were? - I was just paddling and treading water. 6082. And then daylight broke? - Yes. 6083. Did you see any icebergs about you? - No, Sir, I could not see anything. 6084. Did it keep calm till daylight, or did the wind rise at all? - It was just like a pond. 6085. Then you spoke of a collapsible boat. Tell us shortly about it? - Just as it was breaking daylight I saw what I thought was some wreckage, and I started to swim towards it slowly. When I got near enough, I found it was a collapsible not properly upturned but on its side, with an officer and I should say about twenty or twenty-five men standing on the top of it. 6086. (The Commissioner.) With an officer and what? - I should say roughly about twenty-five men standing on the top - well, on the side, not on the top. 6087. (The Solicitor-General.) Do you know which officer it was? - Yes, Mr. Lightoller. 6088. Mr. Lightoller and you think about twenty or twenty-five people? - Yes. The Commissioner: “Men,” he said. 6089. (The Solicitor-General.) Yes, men, my Lord? - Yes, all men. 6090. You said something about its being turned on its side? - Yes. 6091. I wish you would explain what you mean? - It was like as if one of those lifeboats was on its side, floating on its side. (Pointing to model.) 6092. Then they were not in the boat, were they? - No. 6093. They were - ? - Standing on the side, holding one another’s shoulders. 6094. Did you swim towards it? - Yes. 6095. Was there any room for you? - No, Sir. 6096. You agree, do you, that there really was not room for you? - There was not room. 6097. And so they could not take you in? - There was no room for any more. They were standing on it then. 6098. Did you stay near it? - I tried to get on it, but I was pushed off it, and I what you call hung around it. 6099. How much later on was it that you were picked up? - I eventually got round to the opposite side, and a cook that was on the collapsible recognised me, and held out his hand and held me - a chap named Maynard. 6100. Was he able to pull you out of the water, or was he only just able to help to support you? - No. 6101. He gave you a hand, and you kept treading water? - No. My lifebelt helped me, and I held on the side of the boat. 6102. You had been wearing a lifebelt? - Yes, all the time. 6103. So that your feet would be in the water? - Yes, and my legs. 6104. And you supported yourself by your lifebelt. I do not want to be harrowing about it, but was the water very cold? - I felt colder in the lifeboat - after I got in the lifeboat. 6105. You were picked up, were you, by a lifeboat later on? - We were hanging on to this collapsible, and eventually a lifeboat came in sight. 6106. And they took you aboard? - They got within about 50 yards and they sung out that they could only take 10. So I said to this Maynard, “Let go my hand,” and I swam to meet it, so that I
   33   34   35   36   37   38   39   40   41   42   43