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Southampton memorial garden for last Titanic survivor

Milvina Dean

Milvina Dean

First published in Titanic News Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Shipping & Heritage Reporter

SHE was the last living survivor of the sinking of Titanic, and now her home city of Southampton is to have an enduring memorial to Millvina Dean.

A specially designed garden is to be inaugurated alongside the city’s new SeaCity Museum in memory of Millvina, who died on May 31, 2009, the 98th anniversary of the launch of the ill-fated White Star liner.

The Millvina Dean Memorial Garden will be laid out with two benches and a plinth bearing her name.

Working closely with Southampton City Council, plans for the garden have been drawn up by the administrators of the Millvina Fund, who did much to assist her during her final days.

After a memorial service to her in Copythorne Church, her ashes were scattered on the waters of Berth 44 in Southampton’s Eastern Docks, from where Titanic sailed in 1912.

David Hill, from the fund, said: “Millvina hated fuss and was a straightforward sort of person so the garden will be neat and simple but ensure her memory will live on in her home city.

“Millvina was universally loved as a kind, compassionate lady with a great interest in people and had a lively mind and a keen sense of humour.’’ A service of dedication at the memorial garden will be held on May 31, at 2pm.

When Titanic sailed from Southampton a century ago, Millvina was just a baby travelling with her parents and brother, heading for a new life in the USA.

When Titanic hit an iceberg and sank, Millvina survived, together with her mother and brother, and returned to Southampton although her father was lost in the tragedy.

Millvina, who was honorary president of The British Titanic Society, became an internationally known figure and welcomed many visitors to her home in Woodlands as well as attending events and functions connected with the White Star ship.

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