naval affairs

NAC News – Edition 398

NAC News – Edition 398

Your weekly national and international naval news for the week of February 26th, 2021

Edition – 398 “The importance on naval training can hardly be exaggerated.  The proper handling of a modern warship in action is extraordinarily difficult.  Both officers and ratings have exacting and specialized tasks to perform, and all the separate functions must coordinate precisely under the direction of a single mind.”  The Naval Service of Canada Its Official History Vol 1, Road to War, 1933-39. pg 349.  Gilbert Norman Tucker, PH.D. Director of Naval History Section 1952

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  • ★   Editor – NAC-TO will turn 75 year on Monday 1st March, the branch having been established in 1946 and remains 60 members strong!
    • 🍾  Happy 75th Anniversary NAC Toronto!  🎁
  • 2 March – 10:00 – 1100 PST (Vancouver time) Clear Seas webinar – Vessel Traffic in Canada’s Pacific Region study, the fifth body of work under the Marine Transportation Corridors initiative.  A publicly available regional analysis of commercial vessel traffic that provides a comprehensive picture of the ship traffic patterns by ship type, number of  ships transiting Canada’s Pacific waters, where they go, and how much oil they carry. Click here To Register (Free).
  • 2 March – 1900 EST (Toronto) –  NAC-Toronto Virtual Speaker Event: “Canadian Naval Heraldry” by LCdr (Ret’d) Donald S. Williamson, CD. To register email  or call or call NAC-TO (416) 366-2630. Zoom link will be provided closer to the event.
  • 3 March 2021, 1200 (Ottawa time).  Navy League of Canada the Maritime Affairs Virtual (Zoom) Speaker Series. Sponsored by Seaspan Shipyards. Deputy CCG Commissioner Chris Henderson will present “The Future of the CCG”. Register by emailing . Meeting link will be sent out on 1 March 2021.
  • 8 March 2021, 12:00-1:30 pm (Ottawa time) The RCN will host a “virtual” International Women’s Day Leadership Panel. Theme: “Empowering women of the RCN to achieve an equitable future”.  Event and registration details to follow.
  • ★   8 March 2021, 1600 (Vancouver time)) PST – Maritime Security Challenges Session 5  “The Strategic Importance of Islands in the Indian Ocean”.  Registration (Free) is required.   Videos of the previous excellent sessions are available here.
  • Editor – I recommend the “Wild Apricot for Members” app – There are three main features our members can access with the app.  Under “Events”: View an event calendar and event details, register for an event through the app, view existing event registrations, pay an outstanding event registration fee.  Under “Member Directory” view your organization’s entire member directory, view member profiles, email and call fellow members.  Under “Personal Profile” view and adjust your personal profile, including seeing ones membership renewal date and actually do the renewal with a few clicks.

















(If you see any omissions or errors please inform me, and more modern significant dates are also welcome.  The list draws primarily from the Directory of History and Heritage’s comprehensive “Significant Dates in Canadian Military History”, the now defunct “Canada Channel”, “Legion Magazine”, Roger Litwiller’s excellent website, the encyclopedic guidance of NAC member and author Fraser McKee, and anywhere else I can find credible information.)

  • 1 March 1928 HMC Ships Champlain and Vancouver are commissioned into the RCN, replacing HMC Ships Patriot and Patrician.
  • 3 March 1921 HMC Submarines CH-14 and CH-15 are commissioned into the RCN.
  • 4 March 1943 HMC Ships Shediac commanded by Lt John E. Clayton, RCNR with St. Croix commanded by LCdr A. Hedley Dobson,  DSC, RCNR sank the German submarineU-87 in the North Atlantic.
  • 6 March 1944 HMC Ships St. Catharines commanded by LCDR Herbert C.R. Davis, RCNR, HMCS Chilliwack commanded by LCDR Clifton P. Coughlin,  RCNVR, HMCS Gatineau commanded by LCdr Harold V.W. Groos, RCN, HMCS Fennel commanded by A/LCdr William P. Moffat,  RCNVR, and HMCS Chaudière commanded by A/LCdr C. Patrick Nixon, RCN, assist Royal Naval warships in the sinking of the German submarine U-744 in the North Atlantic.
  • 7 March 1945 HMC Ships La Hulloise commanded by LCdr John Brock, RCNVR, with HMCS Strathadam commanded by LCdr Howard L. Quinn, RCNVR, and HMCS Thetford Mines commanded by LCdr John A.R. Allan, DSO,  RCNVR sank the German submarine U-1302 in St. George’s Channel.
  • 9 March 1945 HMCS Uganda arrives in Sydney, Australia, to join the British Pacific Fleet.
  • 10 March 1944 HMC Ships St. Laurent commanded by LCdr George H. Stephen, OBE, DSC,  RCNR with HMCS Owen Sound commanded by A/LCdr John M. Watson, RCNR and HMCS Swansea commanded by A/CDR Clarence A. King, DSO, DSC, RCNR assisted RN warships sink the German submarine U-845 in the North Atlantic.
  • 12 March 1918 Lieutenant (RCN) William McKinstry Heriot-Maitland-Dougall (RCNC 1911–1914) at age of 23 years of age was in command of HMS D3 and was killed with his submarine’s crew of 29 off Le Havre, France.  HMS D3 was sunk in error by French dirigible AT-9, which could not see D3’s insignia because of the sub’s reflection off the waves and took her to be a U-boat firing upon it.  The French hadn’t been informed that D3 was assigned to their waters in the English Channel and were not aware that British submarines were identifying themselves with rockets as opposed to flashing lights.
  • 13 March 1943 HMCS Prescott commanded by LCdr Wilfred McIsaac, RCNVR sank U163 off Cape Finisterre, the kill was originally credited to the submarine USS Herring.
  • 13 March 1944 HMCS Prince Rupert commanded by LCDR Robert W. Draney, RCNR in a combined effort of multiple allied ships and aircraft sank U575 off Cape Finisterre.
  • 14 Mar 1923 Lt Frank Meade appointed C.O. of English Half Company in Montreal, the first RCNVR unit appointment; also A/Lt Alexandre Brodeur for the French Half Company, and on 15 Mar. Lt R.H. Yeates for the Hamilton Half Company.  During 1923 & ’24, 11 Units had C.O.’s appointed, although it took a while to establish the actual units in some cases.
  • 17 March1945 HMCS Guysborough is torpedoed and sunk by U878 off Ushant.  51 of her crew were lost.
  • 19 March 1941 Lt R.J.C. Pringle, RCNVR, appointed C.O. of HMCS Suderöy V, first RCNVR officer in command of an HMC Ship, a requisitioned Norwegian trawler.
  • 20 March 1943 – World War II – UK destroyer commissioned into RCN as HMCS Griffin; 3 weeks later, renamed HMCS Ottawa; second of name. Halifax, Nova Scotia
  • 20 March 1945 HMCS New Glasgow commanded by LCDR Ross M. Hanbury, RCNVR was rammed by accident by U-1003 while snorkelling.  The boat severely damaged her snort and conning tower, and part of New Glasgow’s hull plating and her port propeller.  U-1003 limped seaward, but by the next morning of 21March had to abandoned and the crew took to the life rafts, where they were found the next day.
  • 23 March 1965 Fifteen RCAF aviators are killed when their Argus patrol plane goes down in a night exercise off Puerto Rico.
  • 24 March 1941 The Rush-Bagot Agreement of 1817, which restricted the number of naval vessels allowed on the Great Lakes, is modified to allow both American and Canadian naval vessels to operate on the Great Lakes in greater numbers.
  • 26 March 1941 RCN armed yacht HMCS Otter off Halifax was destroyed by an accidental explosion and fire; two Officers and 17 men lost.
  • 29 March 1945 HMCS TEME (frigate) is torpedoed by U Boat 246 in the English Channel off Falmouth and declared a total loss.
  • 31 March 1945 HMCS Conestoga, the Women’s Royal Canadian Naval Service training establishment, is paid off.
  • 31 March 1991 The Gulf War between Iraq and the United Nations coalition ends.