War hero and top yachtsman
Captain Denis Jermain, the father of Yachting Monthly’s former editor and chief boat tester James Jermain has died at the age of 90. He was a member of the Royal Yacht Squadron and had a reputation for setting expertly thought out courses for major races and coxed the committee boat with great skill even into his seventies.
During World War II, as a naval officer, he devised a technique for sinking ships using depth charges while commanding a motor torpedo boat. After engagements with the enemy in occupied Dutch waters he was mentioned in dispatches and awarded a DSC.
For heroic raids on the north African coast he was awarded a bar to his DSC. He also escorted several Atlantic convoys – one of the most hazardous operations in the war – as commander of a Captain class destroyer, Manners. In her he was later torpedoed in the Irish Sea. As he drifted helplessly, Captain Jermain coolly guided an attack from other ships on the U-boat which was forced to surface before being rammed and sunk. After studying local charts Captain Jermain later sank three snorkel-fitted U-boats which hid among rocks off Cornwall, earning a fourth and fifth mention in dispatches.After the war he commanded the destroyer Lagos during the first Cod War ‘against’ Iceland.
Never a man to rest on his laurels, Captain Jermain obtained an HGV licence during his retirement and ran a business transporting yachts on a low-loader. He leaves a wife Jean and two sons, including James.
For the full obituary see www.telegraph.co.uk