Skip to main content

Lusitania Victims

July 2024
1min read

In the introduction to Mrs. Theodate Pope Riddle’s account of her rescue from the Lusitania (April, 1975) we said that nothing was known about Mme. Depage and Mrs. Naish. That this is not the case has been called to our attention by a dozen readers, among them Mrs. George D. Rowe of Baltimore, who writes:
I loaned a copy of this issue to a friend, Miss F. May Cooper, who went to England in June of 1915 with the American Red Cross and was transferred to a hospital at Lapanne, near Ostend, Belgium, the following year. She tells me that the head of that hospital was M. Depage and that his wife, Mme. Marie Depage, had been lost on the Lusitania while returning from a fund-raising campaign in America. Her body was washed ashore near Queenstown, Ireland. She remembers very well seeing the grave of Mme. Depage in a small plot near the hospital, overlooking the North Sea. It was enclosed by a low white picket fence and decorated with wreaths of flowers made of bright-colored beads.

Mrs. Naish suffered a happier fate, according to the Reverend Charles A. Platt of Ridgewood, New Jersey:
She was Mrs. Theodore Naish, who lived for many years after the tragedy in Kansas City. She was a close friend of my parents, and I recall vividly an evening she spent in our home (when I was nine) during which she told the story of the sinking and her rescue. She was on her honeymoon with her husband. When the first torpedo struck, she and her husband put on life jackets and went immediately to their assigned boat station. She recalled standing there holding her husband’s hand, awaiting the launching of a lifeboat, when there was a second explosion, which sent her crashing into the deck above her head. The next thing she remembered was being pulled from the sea onto an overturned lifeboat. She never saw her husband again.

Enjoy our work? Help us keep going.

Now in its 75th year, American Heritage relies on contributions from readers like you to survive. You can support this magazine of trusted historical writing and the volunteers that sustain it by donating today.