Sale of Lermontov symbol angers former Skipper

Date: 1/6/2006

The captain of the Mikhail Lermontov, the Soviet cruise liner that sank in the Marlborough Sounds 20 years ago, is upset about the attempt to sell the hammer and sickle from his former ship. The steel 2mx1.5m hammer and sickle, the coat of arms of the then USSR, used to decorate the Lermontov’s funnel was listed for auction (asking price $10,000) on Trademe. The Captain, Aram Oganov, said that the Baltic Shipping Company, which owned the ship went bankrupt in the mid-90s. He feels that if something from the ship was to be sold the proceeds should perhaps benefit the family of the refrigerator mechanic, who was the only person to die when the Lermontov hit the rocks. The hammer and sickle symbol was removed from the Trademe auction site before the closing date.

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