The Captain of The ‘Isle Of June’ Is Found Dead on Ship,
Kingston (Jamaica) Gleaner, Monday 3 Sept. 1928
Nassau, August News reached Nassau on Sunday of the death of Captain W. C. Wheeler, of the m.v. Isle of June who was found shot in his cabin that morning. Captain Wheeler was well known in Nassau, having lived here for six or 7 years, and be had commanded the Isle of June for the last three years. During the war he served in the Royal Navy in mine-sweepers In both the North Sea and, the Mediterranean, and the end of the war saw him leave the service as an officer. He was a daring seaman and a fine navigator.
There are many stories of his pluck in adversity, among them one relating to his navigating his ship to port after being severely wounded by one of his crew who ran amok and having bound up his wounds himself. His periodical brushes with the American Coast- Guard service and the story of his being shelled by one of their vessels last March and arrested tor failure to stop after being signaled to do so by a destroyer several miles from Miami Beach, are well known for they have led to a protest being lodged by the British Ambassador at Washington.
Captain Wheeler was to leave returned to Nassau on Sunday to assist in taking cargo from the Harrison liner Discoverer but that vessel arriving earlier than was expected, Mr. C. J. Kelly, the owner of the Isle of June, cabled him not to return so soon. He cabled back that he would leave on Monday. On Saturday night he was very despondent and told his second engineer, Walter Albury, that he had made his last voyage and would not go back in the Isle of June. He was brooding over his misfortunes and told the crew to take shore leave while be remained on board.
At 6.30 next morning when one of his crew went to call him he was found dead in his berth, sitting upright with a bullet wound in his month and a revolver lying between his legs It is said that no inquest was held in Miami, but circumstances pointed to suicide. The Isle of June returned to Nassau yesterday afternoon with a full cargo under the command of Captain Frank Johnson.