The fate of the St Ives' lifeboat - launched at 3am on the morning of 25th January 1939 to assist a vessel in distress 2 miles NNE of St Just - is graphically described in a newspaper article from the Cornishman, on 26th January 1939.
On the outward journey to assist the boat in distress, a large wave capsized the lifeboat near to Clodgy Point, and four of the crew were washed overboard. The boat was then washed towards Godrevy, and a second immense wave capsized the boat and three more crew - including Matthew Barber - were washed overboard. The remaining crew member, W Freeman, hung on to the steering equipment, and very quickly the boat was thrown by a large wave on to a ledge near Godrevy lighthouse, enabling him to scramble on to dry land.
Matthew Barber's body was washed up at Godrevy beach later that day, and he left a wife, Annie, and two young children. One of them, John, later had a son who was also lost at sea, and is commemorated alongside the grandfather he never met on the headstone here.
We can deliver flowers, or another token of remembrance, to the resting place of Matthew Barber at Barnoon Cemetery on your behalf: