THE JOHNSTOWN TRIBUNE
28 Jun 1950
Submitted by Lynne Canterbury
LOCAL WOMAN ESCAPES WHEN SHIPS COLLIDE
Miss Regina Byers, Daisytown,
Aboard Liner in Accident
It gives you a "sinking" feeling to have a hole rammed in the side of your ship, Miss Regina Byers, Daisytown, said last night after her exciting experience aboard the American Export Line's luxury liner Excalibur, rammed by a freighter in New York Harbor yesterday.
For a time it looked as if the liner would sink, but it finally was beached and all of the 114 passengers were removed to safety. Miss Byers escaped injury and succeeded in getting all of her luggage ashore.
The local girl, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Byers, 121 Cover Street, is employed by the Economic Cooperation Administration and is now stationed in Rome. She returned two months ago for a visit with her family and was bound again for Rome when her liner was rammed by a Scandinavian American freighter, Colombia.
Miss Byers has been in government service a number of years. She was stationed in Nuremberg when she first went abroad 18 months ago. Previous to that she was located in Washington, D.C.
The local government girl was registered at the McAlpin Hotel in New York last night, entirely recovered from the excitement of the experience.
Her immediate problem is to secure passage on another ship for Rome. Transoceanic travel facilities are badly congested at present, she learned. She expects to get passage on another ship shortly through the efforts of the American Export Lines.
In a telephone interview last night Miss Byers said she was below in her stateroom when the crash came. The big liner was handed a terrific jolt and furniture and fixtures began toppling.
The ship's officers did an excellent job of reassuring the shaken passengers, she said. The passengers were hustled into life belts while the crewmen beached the ship to prevent it from sinking in the deeper waters of the harbor. The passengers were removed by tugboats and returned to Jersey City, from which the liner had saided just 45 minutes before the crash.