New Jersey Titanic History

William Cahoone Johnson Jr. was a 19-year-old seaman from Hawthorne, NJ, who was on the RMS Titanic when it sunk in the North Atlantic on April 15, 1912.

One of Johnson’s traveling companion’s, William Henry Törnquist, was interviewed after the disaster in the Paterson Morning Call.  Törnquist described Johnson as having unwavering bravery during the tragedy as he went to work getting the women and children safely lowered into the lifeboats.  Johnson was last seen climbing to the bridge with another officer as the last lifeboat left and the Titanic took its final plunge.

William Johnson is buried in North Jersey, but his parents and sister are buried at the Laurel Grove Cemetery in Totowa.  The Titanic International Society occasionally erects memorial stones for those who were lost on the ship.  Robert Bracken, who is a trustee and treasurer of the Titanic International Society, would like to see William Johnson honored at Laurel Grove with a memorial stone so that he may be reunited, in some way, with his family.

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Hawthorne seaman died helping to save the lives of others on the Titanic

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