Mark "Sam" Sambles
26th December 1952 to 12th June 1982
Mark Andrew Sambles (Sam) was born on 26th December 1952.
He was the eldest son of Clifford and Jean, and was part of a large family
having three brothers and three sisters. On leaving school he joined the Royal
Navy training as a chef.
Mark played the guitar, banjo and the mandolin and was a keen rugby player who often represented his various ships at this sport. He always kicked for the goal despite, by his own admission, only being able to see one of the posts. In his last match before Glamorgan sailed he won the man of the match award.
When the ship resumed their matches on returning from the Falklands, Mark's
widow, Dawn whom he married on 9th August 1980, presented a new "Man of the
Match" award, an inscribed cup, in his memory. This cup is now in St Mary's
Church, Swansea along with other Ships' memorabilia and a replica cup was
presented to Dawn in Mark's memory. There is also a refectory table in the
chapel in Govilon South Wales, where he and Dawn were married, dedicated to his
Mark also twice represented the Portsmouth Field gun crew. On the second occasion in 1980 he was injured after the gun carriage was dropped on his hand. After this incident he was confined to the stands.
There was a plaque in his honour at the Field Gun "Hole in the Wall Club" at
In 1981 Mark joined HMS Glamorgan. After enjoying an unexpected Christmas at home following damage incurred to its propellers in early December 1981, HMS Glamorgan sailed for sea trials in Feb 1982. The ship was due to return at the beginning of April, but was however diverted to the South Atlantic on April 2nd 1982, within hours of the Argentine invasion of the Falkland Islands.
At 0536hrs on 12th June an Exocet missile was launched at Glamorgan. The helm was put hard over to turn away from the missile, quite possibly saving the ship by doing so. However, the missile clipped the upper deck exactly where it joins the hull on the port side and blew up just short of the hangar.
Thirteen of Glamorgan's gallant company, including Mark, died.
Sam was a much-loved man. Remembered for his sense of humour and outgoing personality, he is still very much missed by family and friends. He leaves a son, Anthony, by a previous marriage.
~ RIP ~
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