Louisa was born at Holyhead in 1896. She left Park School at 15 to train as a nurse before joining the City of Dublin Steam Packet Company as a Stewardess in 1914. Two of her sisters were similarly employed at the company. She lived with her family at 5 Fair View, Holyhead. One of nine children, she was 22 when she lost her life and was much missed by her family. In the photo she is standing at the left side of the family group.
Family information tells us that she was not scheduled to work that day but sailed in place of one of her sisters who was ill. It is further believed that Louisa Parry went to a lower deck to help passengers but became trapped in a cabin with another woman and a child; crew members were unable to open the door due to the angle of the ship and the pressure of the water against it.
The Memorial Plaque bearing her name was one of 1.3 million issued by the British Government to the next-of-kin of those lost as a result of the war. Made from bronze and measuring 5″ in diameter, it is sometime known as the ‘Widow’s or Death Penny’.
With thanks to Simon McClean for permission to publish the above photographs concerning his great-aunt, Louisa Parry.