Escape from Hong Kong

Admiral Chan Chak - Escape from Hong Kong

Escape from Hong Kong

逃離香港

 

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Admiral Sir Andrew Chan-Chak Chaushek KBE CN 1894 - 1949

Click here for Tributes to Adm Chan Chak 2nd April 1894 - 31st Aug 1949

The Legendary One Legged Chinese Admiral Andrew Chan Chak Chaushek KBE CN





Admiral Chan Chak (2011) is the remarkable story of the life of the legendary "One-legged Admiral." Written by Chan Chak's twin sons Donald & Duncan Chan, in tribute to their father, this book also serves to celebrate the centenary of China's 1911 Xinhai Revolution. Admiral Chan Chak portrays his early years, his steadfast loyalty to Dr Sun Yat-Sen, and his bravery in the Sino-Japanese naval battles Humen.

Some of Adm Chan Chak's papers and decorations were donated to the Hainan Province Archives, in Haikou, Hainan by his son Donald Chan in 2011.


Vice-Adm Chan Chak, the C-in-C of the Chinese Navy based in Canton paid a visit to the UK in August 1933. He inspected the facilities of the largest and most powerful maritime force in the world at Portsmouth, including a tour of HMS Victory, Adm Lord Nelson's flag ship from the 1805 Battle of Trafalgar. He also inspected the Fleet class Aircraft Carrier HMS Courageous and the submarine depot across the water in Gosport. This visit had a profound, and lasting impact on him.

In 1938 the Nationalist Government in China agreed to participate in intelligence sharing with Hong Kong. Forty Six year old Adm Chan Chak was head of the National Military Council of China in Hong Kong, [4] assisting the police and intelligence service since 1938 after the Japanese occupation of much of southern China. [73] Chan was working under his cover as a stock-broker trading as Wah Kee & Company with offices registered at Shell House, formerly called the APC building at 24-32 Queen's Road Central. His military mission consisted of 37 year old Colonel S. K. Yee simply known as S.K of the Chinese Secret Service posing as an insurance salesman from Shanghai who spoke perfect English. General Zheng. Twenty nine year old Flag Lt-Commander Heng Hsu (Henry), ADC to Chan known simply as Henry, and 45 year old Coxswain Yeung Chuen his bodyguard and martial arts expert. He was working under cover with the British Police and intelligence service assisting David MacDougall the secretary to the Far Eastern Bureau of the Ministry of Information (MoI) in matters of civil defense within the Chinese community in the British colony. [43] As well as his living apartment in Prince Edward Road, Kowloon he also had a private office on the fourth floor of the Pedder building in Pedder Street, where he often stayed. British Colonial Laws forbade Native Chinese to occupy a European hotel. Their task was to co-ordinate the activities of the Nationalist agents, many of whom were northern Triad members, feeding the Chinese population, & keeping morale up as well as winkling out Japanese sympathizers. Adm Chan Chak the Sino-British C-In-C was the former Commander of the Chinese 4th Naval Squadron in Canton.

The Adm Chan Chak Archives

Adm Chan Chak Memorial Exhibition in Hainan

Adm Chan Chak Archives Donation Ceremony

Donald Chan on his father Adm Chan Chak KBE CN

The 2nd MTB Flotilla which extracted the Aberdeen Island escape party out under cover of darkness had taken a beating during the battle for Hong Kong.
When the Japanese started to invade Hong Kong Island, the 2nd MTB Flotilla was ordered to attack and shoot up everything in sight, and to expend all ammunition in the process. Unbeknown to the flotilla, the Japanese had already established a beach head on the Island west of the Sugar Refinery at North Point. Lt Ronnie Ashby whose motto was "Be Just and Fear Naught" led the flotilla in MTB 07, pressing home the attack under withering fire from land, sea, and air, suffering heavy losses in the process. Only three MTB's survived to limp back to base in Aberdeen. Lt Kennedy on MTB "09" towed the stricken "07" back to base.The attack was arguably the most daring daylight MTB attack of all time, and was referred to as The Balaclava of the Sea.by Coastal Forces world wide. They were hailed "The bravest of the brave."

Lt Kennedy RNVR: "MTB 11 returned alone from the harbour with her coxswain wounded. There was a long silent pause as we strained our ears to catch the sound of distant engines, but none came. It was a dark day for the flotilla, and for the whole island." [9]

Lieutenant Commander Gandy R. N. (Rtrd) had prevailed against all the odds, and triumphed over adversity to deliver his people back to the UK without loss of life or serious injury after evading capture and escaping from Hong Kong on Christmas Day 1941.

PO Prest: "We travelled by cycles, lorries, junks, and donkeys, but mostly we walked. It was a case of march or die"

Buddy Hide: "On the whole, the moral, spirits, and courage of the party was magnificent. I think it was the shear thoughts of beating the Jap's, and the prospects of getting home after three years, some of us four years from home, that made us carry on."

Chan Chak who had a limited command of the English language was head of the "Hong Kong "Chinese War Assistance Corps" with some 15,000 volunteers assisting in all aspects of civil services, thus freeing the British army to fight at the front. [6]

Adm Chan Chak was also the President of the Southern Kuomintang Nationalists party and a keen sportsman frequently playing tennis with David MacDougall in the pre-war years.

Antony Beevor wrote in his "definitive" account of the second world war: 'The British became rather fond of the piratical Chinese Adm who had saved the situation, and they finally agreed to seek help from Nationalist armies.'
'Adm Chan Chak, with several British officers, escaped in motor torpedo boats that night to join up with Nationalist forces on the mainland.'

The 2nd MTB Flotilla was put at his disposal on the morning of 25th December 1941 to facilitate his escape,[6] [15] thereby side-stepping any rules within surrender terms.

The New Zealand Presbyterian Church Methodist Mission at Shaoguan was run by Mrs Jean Martin & her Irish born husband known by his Chinese name Mooi with a staff of six missionaries and their wives. It was here that Adm Chan Chak finally had the bullet removed from his wrist by Dr S H Moore at the "Ho Sai" hospital. The Adm kept the bullet and had it mounted on a gold chain which he wore from his left lapel. Adm Chan Chak also had a blood transfusion here after his gastric ulcer flared up with Muriel's husband Peredur Jones donating his blood.

Adm Chan-Chak was granted the dignity of an Honorary Knight Commander of the Military Division of the Order of the British Empire (K.B.E.). on 19th August 1942.  He was presented with the award by Sir Horace Seymour the British Ambassador to China at Chungking on 4th November 1942 on behalf of His Majesty King George VI for his services in assisting in the defence of Hong Kong and subsequent escape of a large party of high ranking officials to Free China. Adm Chan was only the second Chinese national ever to gain this prestigious award. [62] This is considered the first act of Sino-British military co-operation against a common enemy in modern history. This was only the second such award to a Chinese National, the other was to Major General Tsai-li T'ang on 3rd March 1920. [62]

The award was for his services working with David MacDougall of the MoI in controlling the Triad gangs and keeping civil disorder to a minimum and leading the escape of the 2nd MTB Flotilla and escorting Senior Officers from Fortress HQ. He was known as the legendary "one legged " Chinese Adm, the Nelson of the East who was loaned to the British forces in Hong Kong by Chiang Kai Chek when the Japanese invaded on 8th December 1941.

Adm Chan Chak and David MacDougall were treated by Dr So for their bullet wounds while the party rested at the American run Wai On hospital mission complex by the river in Waichow

 

Waichow

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Back row: Supt. Bill Robinson, W. O. William M Wright HKRNVR, Capt. Peter Macmillan R. A., Capt. Reginald Guest 1st Mdsx, Coxswain Yeung Chuen CN, Ted Ross MoI>

2nd row: David MacDougall MoI, Adm Chan Chak CN, Major Arthur Goring Probyns Horse, Sq-Ldr. Max Oxford RAF

1st row: Cadet Holger Christensen, Lt-Cmd Hsu Heng (Henry) CN.

Photo from Chan Chak collection ©

 

 

 

 

 

Colonel Yee Shiu Kee was last seen on the bullet riddled boat in Aberdeen South where the Adm received a bullet in his left wrist. He later hid in Pak Sha Wan on Hong Kong Island for a few days and then in the Harbour Mission church on Ap Lei Chau (Aberdeen Island) being looked after by the Rev Cheng. [65]

General (then Colonel) Yee Shiu Kee was granted the dignity of an Honorary Commander of the Military Division of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) on 16 July 1942, and attended a presentation at Chungking on 24 October 1942 held by the British Representative Sir Horace Seymour the British Ambassador to China on behalf of King George VI.

Adm Chan Chak: "The Danish steer man was the first one shot, then the engineer. MacDougall and others were wounded. Most of the stray bullets had hit the boat and even some had hit my helmet.
Hsu was very wary about me the “One Foot Admiral of 50” swimming such a far distance.
I insisted to carry my own gun and passport. Yeung could not swim and he suggested that we should go back to Hong Kong. “Going back means surrender. I would rather die!” I said.
I took off my life preserver (which was the last one on board) and gave it to Yeung. As I raised my hand, a stray bullet went right through my left hand.
Yeung didn’t say anything anymore, he just jumped into the sea, followed by MacDougall with his wounded back.
YeeSiu-Kee and 2 other British soldiers had to remain on the boat. Yee could not swim and the 2 soldiers were badly wounded.
We were all sitting ducks in the water and non-stop bullets were flying everywhere.
I finally swam ashore on the small island right next to Apliechau."
[6]

Ted Ross MOI: "Well, we hadn't gone much more than five or six hundred yards when we were spotted from the shore and the Jap's let fly at us with everything they had, rifles, machine guns and small shells.
Several of our chaps were hit, and soon a shot put the engine out of commission, that capped it.
The machine gun bullets kept tearing in. Mac got one right in his tin hat, another cut through the sole of his shoe, and just as he was saying how close they were coming he got one right in the back.
" [28]

Photo from Maj Goring's published article on the escape. [17]

Along with S.K. were two severely wounded volunteer crew left in the boat, the big forty seven year old Jutlander, Alexis Damsgaard & Irishman J. J. Forster. After drifting all night the launch fetched up on the shore and S.K. bribed a junk man to take the two wounded to a hospital.

S.K. Yee: "I put the two others on a junk, asking the fishermen to take them to a hospital on the mainland in Kwangtung Province.
I was kept some days at Pak Sha wan and subsequently I had to return to the church at Apliechau, which was under the Reverend Cheng. I took shelter at the church for some days before making my final escape to Free China."
[62]

Of the sixteen who set out on "HMS Cornflower's" launch, two were killed, one taken prisoner, another made his own escape while the remaining twelve made it to the MTB's.

Clutching Hsu Heng (Henry)'s bible S.K. sought refuge with the Reverend Cheng in the Harbour Mission Church. He eventually made his way to Kukong in free China where Chan Chak was still recovering, arriving there on 5th February 1942 wearing Hsu Heng (Henry)'s shoes, only to leave two days later as mysteriously as he had arrived after falling out with Chan over the allegedly missing $40.000 (£2,500 GBP) They remained bitter opponents for the rest of Chan's life.

General Yee Shiu Kee, Chinese Peoples Army, was appointed an Honorary Commander of the Order of the British Empire on 16th July 1942. He was presented with the award by His Majesty King George VI's Representative at Chungking, Sir Horace Seymour the British Ambassador to China on 24th October 1942. [62]

 

Click here for Adm Chan Chak's escape account in a radio broadcast to the nation from Chungking at 7pm on 20th March 1942.

Chan Chak also broadcast greetings to the British people on the BBC on Christmas Day 1942 along with General Montgomery's mother Lady Mongomery.[87]

Chan remained based in Chungking for the remainder of the war running a network of agents and working closely with Col Lindsay Ride of the BAAG. He became the first post war Mayor of Canton, resigning to take the post of the first post war C-in-C South China Navy in 1946.[88]

Adm Chan Chak gets a heros welcome in Shaoguan (Kukong)

 

 

 

 

 

Adm Chan Chak receives a heros welcome in Shaoguan (Kukong) 6th January 1942

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kukong

 

Lt-Cmd John Yorath RN (Rtrd), Maj Arthur Goring, Mrs Muriel Jones, Supt Bill Robinson, Cmdr Montague RN (Rtrd), & Lt-Cmd Hsu Heng (Henry) CN at Kukong, Shaoguan 6th January 1942

 

 

 

Lt C J Collingwood RN with the ships dog Bruce and ratings of the 2nd MTB Flotilla arrive in Shaoguan (Kukong) 6th January 1942

 

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Photo from the Hide collection ©

 

Kukong

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

General Yu Hanmou & Adm Chan Chak in Shaoguan 6th January 1942

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

General Yu Hanmou & Adm Chan Chak in Kukong, Shaoguan 7th January 1942

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Left: Admiral Chan Chakand Cmdr Hugh Montague RN (Rtrd) being greeted in Kukong.

Admiral Chan Chak was featured on the front page of the British Daily Express during the escape along with Cmdr Montague

The New Zealand Presbyterian Church Methodist Mission at Kukong was run by Peredur Jones and his wife Muriel with a staff of six missionaries and their wives. Located on the west bank where the rivers Mo Shui & the Ching Shui merged.

"At the southern end of this shanty town, there were two Christian Mission stations; one was Catholic, operating a school by the Salesian Fathers; the other was Protestant,incorporating the "Ho Sai" Hospital, literally translated as the Hospital on the West Bank. It was well staffed and well run. The medical superintendent of the hospital was a New Zealander of Irish origin, Dr. Samuel H Moore. Assisting him was a team of well trained Chinese doctors, backed up by a nursing school. It was perhaps the one and only really dependable hospital in the whole of war time South China. Along with Dr. Moore, were a few European Missionaries, doing their evangelical work.

To reach the mission from downtown Kukong, one had to cross the Western River, by one of the two pontoon bridges, and then walk southwards for about 15 minutes. Inside the hospital campus, there were built, apart from the main hospital buildings for wards and for nurses quarters, three blocks of two storied European style buildings; one was the Medical Superintendent's Living quarters; one was for the Chinese Assistant Medical Officers; and the other for the expatriate Missionaries. In between the blocks, were well tended gardens. In the Medical Superintendent's Quarters, there was a spare guest room" [45].

Adm Chan Chak finally had the bullet removed from his wrist by Dr S H Moore, Mooi as he was known at the Ho Sai Hospital. The Adm kept the bullet and had it mounted on a gold chain which he wore from his left lapel on ceremonial occasions.

Jean Moore: "Mooi had removed the bullet from his wrist but he had hemorrhaged from a gastric ulcer which was no longer quiescent due to congratulatory feasts en route to Kukong. He was given a blood transfusion directly from Peredur Jones, our Welsh missionary, whom he later rewarded with a bottle of whisky."44

After his surgery Adm Chan Chak stayed as a guest in Dr Moore's young daughter's bedroom decorated with Mother Goose posters, receiving many VIP visitors including a decoration from President Chiang Kai Shek.
Chan Chak started to read the Christian Bible after being introduced to it by Hsu Heng (Henry) after their miraculous escape from Hong Kong.
S.K. Yee turned up at the mission wearing Hsu Heng (Henry)'s shoes carrying Henry's bible on the 5th February while Chan was convalescing, only to disappear again two days later as mysteriously as he had turned up. SK and Chan fell out over the alleged missing $40.000.
Chan Chak converted to Christianity from Buddhism after Henry saved his life prior to boarding the MTB's at Aberdeen Island, and was baptized at the Union Church in Chungking on the anniversary of the Christmas Day escape from Hong Kong, adopting the name "Andrew.[56]

"After the arrival of the sixty-five men, the next group of escapees from Hong Kong was headed by Colonel Lindsay Ride, Professor of Physiology at Hong Kong University, with two other university lecturers and Francis Lee, one of his Chinese students. Colonel Ride joined Harry Owen Hughes in the spare bedroom and it was there that the British Army Aid Group was born, a type of Ml6 organisation whose first objective was to organise en masse escapes from the prison camps in Hong Kong" [21].

6th January 1942 Kukong, Shaoguan

 

 

 

 

Left: British and Chinese Officers at the welcoming ceremony

Vice Commander-in-Chief VII War Zone General Jiang Guangnai, David MacDougall head of information , Commander Hugh Montague RN, C-in-C VII War Zone General Yu Hanmou, Adm Chan Chak, Lt-Colonel Harry Owen-Hughes, and Chief-of-Staff VII War Zone General Wang Jin, at Kukong [Shaoguan] 6th January 1942.

Photo fron the Chan Chak family collection © 

Translation by Chi Man Kwong. Research Assistant Professor, History Department, Hong Kong Baptist University.

Adm Chan Chak kept the bullet removed from his left wrist, and had it mounted on a gold chain to wear on his lapel as a permanent reminder of his incredible escape from Hong Kong. After the war Chan became the first post war Mayor of Canton.

Chan's exploits during the 18 day battle and the epic escape were the stuff of legend. He became known as the Nelson of the East after the legendary Adm Lord Horatio Nelson R. N.

 

Admiral Chan Chak had not realised the bullet was still lodged deep in his wrist. Dr Samuel H Moore, Mooi, as he was known at the Ho Sai (Hexi) infirmary operated on him to remove the bullet. Three days later the Admiral suffered a ruptured stomach ulcer, resulting in a loss of blood. The Rev Peredur Jones aged 28, who taught at the Lingan University in Canton, was staying at the mission with his wife Dora Egwys Jones and was found to have the best blood match. Peredur volunteered to donate blood for the transfusion, it did not go well, taking over an hour to infuse due to congealing. The Admiral kept the bullet and had it mounted on a gold chain which he wore from his left lapel on ceremonial occasions. [113]

 

Adm Chan Chak CN: "I then received treatment at the West River (Hexi) Hospital but I loss much blood in the process. Rev. Jones (?) voluntarily donated his blood to me; this episode was a good example of the deep friendship between us and the Allies.” [6]

Left: members of the YMCA and mission greet Adm Chan Chak and his party on arrival in Shaoguan (Kukong)
The Rev Peredur W P Jones is standing on the right with his wife Mrs Dora Egwys Jones and probably Constance Green the infirmary Matron donated his blood for Chan Chak. [6]

Jean Moore: "Mooi (Samuel) had removed the bullet from his wrist but he had haemorrhaged from a gastric ulcer which was no longer quiescent due to congratulatory feasts en route to Kukong. He was given a blood transfusion directly from Peredur Jones, our Welsh missionary, whom he later rewarded with a bottle of whisky." [43]

 

 

 

 

David MacDougall, Adm Chan Chak C-in-C CN late Mayor of Canton and Wing Commander Max Oxford in June 1946 Photo from the Oxford family collection ©

Adm Chan Chak became the first post war Mayor of Canton in 1945. He resigned in 1946 to take the post of the first Commander-in-Chief of the post war Chinese Navy.

Adm Chan Chak and David MacDougall revisited Aberdeen together on Sunday 26th May 1946 and reminisced over their incredible Christmas Day escape in 1941.

Members of the Christmas Day escape who returned to help rebuild the Colonony of Hong Kong after its return to British control in 1945 included

The MI9 escape team

Mike Kendall

Colin McEwan

[John] Monia Talan

The Author, Richard Hide the son of P.O. Buddy Hide with Adm Chan Chak's son Donald Chan with Ted Moore the son of L/S AC Moore in 1999 & 2005.

In 1999, under a portrait of Adm Chan Chak in his capacity as Mayor of Canton, Donald & Richard along with Ted Moore vowed to trace the men and/or their descendents from the iconic Waichow photo taken 30th December 1941, and to retrace the escape route from Hong Kong to Waichow, now Huizhou.

Photos from the Hide collection ©











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The portrait of Chan Chak while Mayor of Canton in 1945 under which we pledged to retrace the escape.

Click here to read some tributes to Adm Chan Chak

Chan Chak became the first post war Mayor of Canton after the Japanese surrender in 1945. He held this post for just over a year. In 1946 he became the first post war C-in-C South China Navy. His death was announced unexpectedly on 1st September 1949 aged 56 in Canton, now Guangzhou. On August 31, 1949, Chan had a party at his residence. His wife Leung Siu Chee who he had married in 1925 had just passed away two months earlier in Hong Kong. Amongst the guests at Chan's party was Leung Wingyuen who of course had aided in the Adm's escape in 1941. The following day Chan was found dead, he had suffered stomach ulcers during the escape and the doctor said it had flared up and burst. Chan Chak was promoted to full Adm and was accorded a funeral with full Military Honours in Canton attended by over five hundred military and Government officials.

Adm Chan Chak is buried in the Tsuen Wan Cemetery (荃灣華人永遠墳場) New Territories, Hong Kong.

Photo from the Hide collection ©




The bullet removed from his wrist, now mounted with a gold chain, along with the KBE accorded to Adm Chan Chak by Sir Horace Seymour the British Ambassador to China at Chungking on 4th November 1942 on behalf of His Majesty King George VI for his services in assisting in the defence of Hong Kong and subsequent escape of a large party of high ranking officials to Free China. Adm Chan was only the second Chinese national ever to gain this prestigious award. [62] This is considered the first act of Sino-British military co-operation against a common enemy in modern history.









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Adm Chan Chak's pocket watch with the bullet removed from his wrist.

The bullet was a 6.5mm used in the standard Japanese Type 96 light machine-gun with a range of 600 yards (550m).

Photos from the Hide collection ©

 

 

 



Rear Admiral to Vice Admiral Chan Chak
    
    Photos from the Admiral Chan Chak collection ©

 

 

 

In 1930 Chan was promoted to Rear Adm and Commander-In-Chief of the Chinese Navy by Dr. Sun Yat Sen.

 

 












Adm Chan Chak's parents Chan Hiu Shan (陳曉山) and Ng Lin (吳蓮)

(Run cursor over photo)

Chan Chak was born in 1895 in Shakong village in Wenchang city,  King Shan County, Hainan China. When Chan was three his father took him to Singapore to make a living. His father was a messenger between Hoi Nan and Singapore. He also pulled the rickshaw. Chan came back to his homeland at 8. By then he had two brothers. He became the leader of the village boys. When they played battle games, he won constantly. Although Chan's family was very poor, he was fortunate to attend primary school. He was a high achiever and a hard worker. Chan used all his pocket money towards books. He also attended secondary school.

In 1911 he joined Tongmenhui (“Alliance Society”) (同盟會), a revolutionary coalition led by Dr. Sun Yat Sen (孫中山) with the goal of overthrowing the Qing Dynasty.  After the military uprising in Wuchang (武昌起義) on October 10, 1911, the revolutionary forces were successful in ending over 2000 years of Imperial rule. Sun Yat Sen was then elected President of the Provisional Government, and on January 1, 1912 the Republic of China was officially established.

After the establishment of the Republic of China, the country was greatly divided by different military leaders and warlords. While the Southern provinces were supporters of Sun Yat Sen, most of the Northern provinces were under Yuan ShiKai (袁世凱).
His group of Northern military leaders were known as Beiyang army. Long Jin Guang (龍覲光), an official in Guangdong, and his brother Long Jin Guang (龍濟光) were all Yuan’s men, and there was a well known incident when Chan Chak and his fellow naval students threw grenades trying to assassinate Long Jin Guang when Long came to the naval school for inspection. Long was seriously wounded but not dead. Chan Chak etc. went into hiding for a few days before returning to the school. In 1914 Chan Chak recruited 20 some fellow pro-Sen students to orchestrate a daring capture of Long’s flagship. They bravely and successfully also took Baupi ship, as well as the nearby Kanghung ship. They went straight toward Long’s government mansion, but were outnumbered by Long’s army as well as several gunboats. Defeated, Chan Chak escaped to Hong Kong. Later in 1915 he returned to Canton to resume his naval studies and graduated – at that time he was only 21 years old. Remarkable bravery and heroism at such a young age!

Yuan Sai Kai had died in 1916, and by 1921 Sun had returned to Canton from Shanghai and became “Extraordinary President” of Southern Military Government. Sen appointed Chan Jiong Ming as governor of Guangdong province. Chan Jiong Ming, who had been a follower of Sen, now differed with Sen who was focused on unification of the country by mounting a military expedition against the Northern militarists (Northern Expedition), while Chan Jiong Ming wanted a ‘federalist’ approach, i.e. “Guangdong people govern Guangdong”.

They parted ways. In June 1922 Chan Jiong Ming rebelled and attacked Sen’s presidential palace and forced Sen to seek safety on board Yung Fung warship (永豐艦), escorted safely by Chan Chak and other loyal followers.
A naval battle ensued. Sen was at Yung Fung warship for 50 some days, under the loyal, safe protection of Chan Chak. In the end Chan Jiongming recaptured Canton and forced Sen to flee to Hong Kong en route to Shanghai. This famous incident demonstrates Chan Chak’s heroism and loyalty to Sun Yat Sen. Later Yung Fung warship (永豐艦) was renamed Zhong Shan warship (中山艦) in honour of Sun.[6]

While commanding Fort Tiger Gate at the mouth of the Pearl River in 1938 during the siege of Canton Chan received a wound to his left foot. Chan was too busy repelling Japanese attempts to get past the fort and before long gangrene set in. His long time friend and tennis partner David MacDougall made hasty arrangements for an appointment at St Teresa's Hospital in Hong Kong. His leg was subsequently amputated below the knee.

 

 

 

Wing Commander Max Oxford RAF , Vice Adm Chan Chak KBE CN, & Commander Hsu Heng (Henry) O.B.E. CN on 17th March 1944


Photo from Adm Chan Chak's collection ©


















Japanese Surrender Canton

Adm Chan Chak accepting the Japanese instrument of surrender from General Okamura Yasuji of the IJA at the Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall in Canton now Guangzhouin, 3rd September 1945 [51] and on the rollover photo Chan is with Lt-Col Dick Hooper leaving the surrender ceremony afterwards.

(Run the cursor over the photo)

Photo from Adm Chan Chak's collection ©













Lt-General Sir Adrian Carton de Wiart, VC, KBE, CB, CMG, DSO who was Winston Churchill's special representative to Generalissimo Chiang Kai Shek, with Chinese Adm Chan Chak KBE and other British and Chinese Military officials after de Wiart arrived in Chungking 18th December 1943.
In a military career spanning 1899-1947, Adrian Carton de Wiart fought in 4 wars, and survived being shot in the stomach, groin, head, hand, ankle, hip and leg; surviving two plane crashes and five escape attempts from a POW camp. He lost an eye and a hand in 1915, but still won the Victoria Cross in 1916.
Churchill admired Carton de Wiart, describing him as "an old and valued friend, a model of chivalry and honour" when he wrote the foreword to Carton de Wiart's autobiography Happy Odessey.

Adrian Carton de Wiart was a guest at fellow escapee Acting Wing Commander Max Oxford's wedding to Audrey Watson in the Chungking Embassy Chapel on Saturday 8th January 1944. [30]

Photo from Adm Chan Chak's collection ©










 

 

Adm Chan Chak with officials including Hong Kong Governor Sir Marc Young who returned as Governor on 1st May 1946, and Major-General Alexander Patrick Drummond Telfer-Smollett ??, C-in-C International Garrison Shanghai, China 1937-1939 which included the 1st Battalion, Durham Light Infantry (The DLI Association site)

Photo from Adm Chan Chak's collection ©











A post war (1946?) photo of Adm Chan Chak with Major-General Alexander Patrick Drummond Telfer-Smollett ??, former C-in-C International Garrison Shanghai, China 1937-1939 which included the 1st Battalion, Durham Light Infantry (Photos in Shanghai & Peking 1937)

Photo from Adm Chan Chak's collection ©













 

Adm Sir Andrew Chan Chak's funeral

Adm Chan Chak died on 1st September 1949 in Canton, now Guangzhou, and was accorded a full military funeral as befitted the C-in-C South China Navy after lying in state.
Adm Chan Chak is buried in the Tsuen Wan Cemetery (荃灣華人永遠墳場) New Territories, Hong Kong.

Tributes to Adm Sir Andrew Chan Chak Chaushek KBE CN 1894-1949

HERO Vice-Chairman Chan On Pong Duncan

29th Nov 1934 - 2nd Nov 2009

Duncan is buried alongside his father Adm Sir Andrew Chan Chak Chaushek KBE CN, and his twin brother On Kwok (Donald) in the Tsuen Wan Cemetery (荃灣華人永遠墳場) New Territories, Hong Kong.

Photo from the Hide family collection &copy

Chan On Pong Duncan Obituary

A tribute to Donald & Duncan Chan (MS Office Power Point 2010 or later)

A tribute to Donald & Duncan Chan (Small File)

 

 

 

陳安国 President HERO

29th November 1934 - 6th July 2013

Donald is buried alongside his father Adm Sir Andrew Chan Chak Chaushek KBE CN and twin brother On Pong (Duncan) in the Tsuen Wan Cemetery (荃灣華人永遠墳場) New Territories, Hong Kong.

Photos from the Hide family collection©

Chan On Kwok Donald

Click here for the author's journey with Donald Chan

Donald and Duncan Chan in full song

Research and web publication by Buddy Hide Jnr ©

The contents of this web site led to a considerable number of escapee families contacting me and now each other, and remains the principle source of contact and private information for the spin off projects that have followed. The personal accounts enabled me to record the complete and true account of this remarkable episode of Sino-British war time co-operation. The information compiled here has directly resulted in a museum exhibition in Hong Kong, a re-enactment of the escape in Hong Kong and China, with a movie drama and documentary in the making.

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