Culture
Local researcher pays tribute to WWII veteran Peter McSweeney in emotional message
When Peter McSweeney passed away in 2009, his son visited Malta to spread his father’s ashes in a spot where this photo of his father was taken during the war.

Sarah Micallef

As we approach Malta’s annual Operation Pedestal reunion later this month, marking the anniversary of the celebrated convoy which saved Malta when it was running desperately low on supplies during World War II; Maltese researcher Simon Cusens has taken to social media to pay tribute to Peter McSweeney, a diver who was part of the salvage operations to refloat the sunken Ohio.

Sharing a wartime photo of Mr McSweeney, Mr Cusens recalls how, following the veteran’s passing in 2009, his son Graham, who was also in the army, visited Malta to spread his father’s ashes in the sea, in a spot where the very same photo of his father was taken during the war.

Simon Cusens via The Malta George Cross Movement / Facebook

Simon Cusens via The Malta George Cross Movement / Facebook

“We scattered his ashes in the very spot where he is standing in the photo, at Senglea Point just by today's Regatta Bar. Unexplainably, the perfectly calm sea became instantly agitated as the ashes touched the water, causing us and his son to get away from our position but not before our shoes got very wet,” he writes.

Recalling the emotional event, Mr Cusens adds, “it was as though the waters of Grand Harbour, where Peter risked his life so many times during WW2, were overjoyed as they embraced him once again.”

Commenting on the post, Graham McSweeney also recalled that day, writing that “I remember it well, with the sea being agitated as I spread my father’s ashes in the water. Which I thought was a sign, Malta was accepting him back to the sea and place he so dearly loved throughout his life.” 

On behalf of the team at GuideMeMalta, we join Mr Cusens in paying tribute to one of the island’s war heroes.



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