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Author Talk: The Athenia Story

Tom Sanger, Author

Thursday, August 12, 4-5 PM

Shortly after sunset on Sept.l3, 1939, the British passenger ship Athenia was torpedoed by a German submarine, plunging more than 1400 people into a struggle to survive. Athenia became the first British ship sunk by Germany in the war. The attack also ignited the Battle of the Atlantic, the longest continuous combat action of World War II. Today, however, very few people on either side of the Atlantic have heard of Athenia or know if the ship's place in history. In a multi-media presentation, author Tom Sanger describes events leading up to the tragedy, the circumstances that put Athenia's passengers and crew in harm's way, and the heroic efforts that rescued more than 1300 survivors. Tom's talk will also explain why this tragedy has faded from our collective memory and why it should not be forgotten.

About Tom Sanger:

Tom Sanger earned a bachelor's degree in journalism from California State University Northridge in 1966. He served two years in the U.S. Army as an Information Specialist, including a year in Vietnam. Tom worked as a news writer for Los Angeles radio station KABC and as a reporter at the Associated Press. In Sydney, Australia, he researched and wrote documentary scripts for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. During a 22-year career in corporate public relations in southern California, Tom wrote newsletters, speeches, annual reports, and employee publications and supervised communications departments. With his wife, Kay, Tom co-authored a guidebook, Southern California for Kids, published in 1990. In 2010 Tom wrote a biography of a surgeon in Australia. Without Warning (River Grove Books, 2017), a historical novel about a passenger ship sunk of the first day of World War II, is his first work of fiction.

Thursday, August 12, 4-5 PM

Free/Member, $10/Non-Member*

Limited capacity. Ticket purchase required to reserve your seat.

*cancelations must be made 7 days in advance to receive a refund.

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