SABENA FLIGHT TO CONGO
Brussels´ National Airport, with my parents and my younger brother Luc.
SABENA DC 7C
The Douglas DC-7 is an American aircraft built by the Douglas Aircraft Company from 1953 to 1958. It was the last major piston transporter made by Douglas, coming just a few years before the advent of jet aircraft such as the Boeing 707 and Douglas DC-8. 338 were produced.
COMPAGNIE MARITIME BELGE
Belgium required a passenger fleet mainly to trade with her African colony, then known as the Belgian Congo. There were two main companies, Compagnie Belge Maritime and Lloyd Royale Belge, which combined in 1930 to form Compagnie Maritime Belge (Lloyd Royale), later known as CMB. Their ships were all small in size, the largest being around 13000 gross tons.
12 Aug 1950
Launch as the last of a 5 ship series (called the "Ville-boats") of identical ships for the Antwerp - Matadi (Belgian Congo)-Service at the yard of Cockerill-Ougrée, Hoboken
12 Feb 1951
Maiden voyage Antwerp - Matadi
18 May 1957
Conversion of propulsion plant: Now an additional piston mounted above the cylinder compresses air in the cylinder. 9250 HP, 16.5 kn, in line with the arriving new flagships of the fleet Jadotville and Baudouinville. By this velocity the round-trip Antwerp - Matadi - Antwerp was shortened by two days.
5 July 1967
Sold to VEB Deutsche Seereederei, Rostock. Renamed: GEORG BÜCHNER. In Vlissingen for conversion. 11060 BRT.
Cargo liner service without passengers. Their accommodation was used by sailors and engineers on training voyages. Used for instance for cargo-carrying training-voyages to Cuba and Mexico.
1 Jan 1974
Transferred to VEB Deutfracht/Seereederei, Rostock.
During welding training the hull springs leak.
31 Aug 1977
As a "Landbased training facility" moored permanently in Rostock-Schmarl. Boarding school for sailors and engineers.
Belgian interests intend to buy the ship for 900.000 Deutsche Mark, but withdraw in the face of repair costs of 2 Mio. Deutsche Mark.
Transferred to the community of Rostock.
Shifted to the yacht harbour in the inner city of Rostock.
Disguised as a clown on deck of the Charlesville.
The journey from Antwerp to Congo (Matadi) took two weeks with stops at Tenerife, Lobito (Angola) and Boma (Congo).
First driving lessons…
My first girlfriend…
With my father Jozef.
BUMBA JUNE 1958
My mother Lucienne with her two sons .