The moving story of one of the last survivors of the Titanic can be revealed for the first time after touching letters and documents were discovered after her death.
For 94 years Lillian Asplund refused to speak about the tragedy that claimed the lives of her father and three brothers.
Instead, the spinster kept the final moments of her family locked in her memory and the poignant possessions of her father Carl hidden in a shoebox in her bureau.
It was only after her death aged 99 the box was found along with the collection of Titanic-related items that, pieced together, tell the tragic story of the family’s demise.
Among them were notes Mr Asplund had copied from a flyer promoting the benefits of living in California, an American dream that enticed the family to set sail for a new life.
An incredibly rare and water-stained ticket for the luxury liner was also found. Only a handful of Titanic tickets are in existance as most of them sunk with the ship.
The paper documents recovered from his body miraculously survived for 12 days after the disaster because Mr Asplund’s lifejacket kept his coat’s breast pocket out of the water.
His pocket watch which stopped at 19 minutes past two – the exact time the liner sank – was also found on him. And a heart-rending note written by his grief-stricken mother in which she wrote of how she hoped to see her son again in heaven formed part of the collection.
The stunning archive includes a sad photograph of Lillian, her mother Selma and three-year-old brother Felix, who both survived, at her father’s grave in 1912.
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