Thank you for your kind comments on my book. Your grandfather, Pvt. Martin Fernandes, was assigned to Company F, 3rd. Platoon, 262nd. Regiment, which was quartered where the torpedo struck the ship. There were only 4 survivors from his platoon of which 3 were hospitalized. No bodies from the platoon were recovered. Your grandfather’s body was among 37 from his platoon never found.
I am no longer in touch with any living survivors. There is an organization called the PVO (Panther Veterans Organization). They will have a reunion in June in Louisville, KY. Do you have a photo of your grandfather that you could e-mail me to post on our In Memoriam page? If you e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org I will send you the name of the PVO contact person for the June reunion.
Leopoldville disaster author/historian