naval affairs

NAC News – Edition K345 HMCS Smiths Falls

NAC News – Edition K345 HMCS Smiths Falls

Your weekly national and international naval news for the week of February 21st, 2020:

Edition – K345 HMCS Smiths Falls (WW2 Revised Flower Class Corvette)

Rod Hughes – Editor NAC News  (comments welcome to help improve this service)

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  • Changes to the 2020 UNTD Board
  • Vanguard ShipTech 2020 Forum Keynote Speaker: Mario Pelletier, Commissioner of the Canadian Coast Guard, The Westin, Ottawa, ON 25 February 2020, 7:30 – 17:00
  • 2020 NAC BOA Gala, Conference and AGM – 30 April – 3 May 2020 in Ottawa. Details on registration and hotel accommodations will be announced very soon!
    • 30 Apr (Thursday) – Evening – 2020 BOA Gala Dinner at Canadian War Museum
    • 1 May (Friday) – Day – NAC National Conference
    • 2 May (Saturday) – Morning – NAC National 2020 AGM
    • 3 May (Sunday) – 1000-1400 – National RCN BOA ceremony/parade and associated social gathering
  • Navy Outlook 2020 – Sponsored by CADSI: Wednesday 8 April 2020 – Ottawa – Your Navy’s update on operational requirements, projects, and the RCN’s current and future strategic outlook
  • Vanguard Launches First-Ever Canadian Submarine Event  (Editor – The next big RCN procurement challenge!  The Deep Blue 2020 Forum, a one-day event, will take place on 29 October 2020, details to follow)
  • Obituary – Cdr (ret’d) Michael Page –  see “Scuttle Butt” below for a link to his obituary and corrected information in regard donations









CDR (Ret’d) Michael Page. – Obituary – Note the obituary contains incorrect information on where to make donations. The correct address for the NAC Endowment Fund is:

NAC Endowment Fund

PO Box 42025 Oak Bay

2200 Oak Bay Avenue

Victoria, BC V8R 6T4



(I have added more events.  If you see any omissions or errors please inform me, and any more modern significant dates are also welcomed.  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”, and Roger Litwiller’s excellent web site)

  • 1 February 1911 – The first recruiting posters for the RCN are issued to post offices throughout Canada.
  • 1 February 1968 – The personnel and organization of the RCN, Canadian Army, and the Royal Canadian Air Force were unified into a single organization, the Canadian Armed Forces.
  • 2 February 2003 – HMCS Regina joins the Canadian Naval Task Group, part of the international anti-terrorism campaign in the Persian Gulf.
  • 5 February 1944 – HMS Puncher, an aircraft carrier, is commissioned into the Royal Navy at Vancouver with a Canadian crew, but a British air complement.
  • 6 February 1943 – Italian aircraft attack with torpedoes and sink RCN Flower Class corvette HMCS Louisbourg east of Oran while she is escorting a convoy from Gibraltar to Bone, Algeria; 2 Officers, 35 crew, and 5 RN seaman are lost, 40 survive.
  • 8 February 1943 – HMCS Regina sinks the Italian submarine Avorio in the Mediterranean Sea.
  • 8 February 1943 – HMCS Weyburn mined and sunk.  As the ship sank the two depth charges whose pins had not been removed exploded, killing those in the water and killing and severely injuring members of the HMS Wivern’s crew who were conducting the rescue.  HMS Wivern herself was severely damaged and had to be towed back to port.
  • 11 February 1942 – HMCS Spikenard while escorting Convoy SC-67 in the North Atlantic is torpedoed and sunk by U136.  There were only 8 survivors and 57 perish.
  • 13 February 1859 – Royal marines called in to keep order during the BC gold rush.
  • 14 February 1945 – 29th Canadian MTB Flotilla is destroyed in a catastrophic fire at Ostende Harbour, Belgium.  26 RCN sailors are killed & boats 459, 461, 462, 465, & 466 are lost.
  • 15 February 1965 – The Maple Leaf becomes Canada’s official flag.  The white ensign is lowered in RCN ships at 1200.  Effective May 5, 2013 (Battle of the Atlantic Sunday), the two flags switched roles: the white flag with the maple leaf canton became the ensign, and the national flag became the jack.
  • 16 February 1945 – HMCS St. John sinks the German submarine U-309 off the northeast coast of Scotland near Moray Firth following a persistent attack with Depth Charges & Hedgehog.
  • 18 February 1942 – Newfoundlanders rescue 185 from USN ships driven onto the rocks in a storm, 203 perish.
  • 18 February 1944 – Sixteen Canadian minesweepers, in four divisions of four ships, begin to leave St. John’s for British waters to take part in the invasion of Normandy.
  • 19 February 1944 – Motor Torpedo boats of the 29th and 65th (Canadian) Flotillas begin to be commissioned (continues until 31 March).
  • 22 February 1943 – RCN Flower Class corvette HMCS Weyburn strikes a mine laid by U-118 off the Strait of Gibraltar during Operation Torch; the explosion kills one seaman of her crew of 77; before the ship sinks, all but two depth charges are rendered safe by throwing the detonators over the side; British destroyer HMS Wivern starts to remove the wounded and survivors when twenty minutes later an after bulkhead gives way and the corvette begins to sink; the two depth charges explode, killing 8 more sailors and wounding others in the water; Wivern’s engines and boilers are hit, leaving the ship dead in the water; 84 RCN and RN sailors are wounded in total. Gibraltar
  • 22 February 1945 – HMCS Trentonian is torpedoed and sunk by a German submarine U1004 near Falmouth England, six of her ship’s company were lost.
  • 25 February 1955 – Women become part of the RCN.
  • 27 February 1930 – HMCS Thiepval is lost in Barkley Sound, B.C.
  • 28 February 1946 – HMCS Cornwallis is paid off (taken out of service) and new recruit training begins to be conducted at local naval depots.
  • 28 February 1991 – Operation Desert Storm, the combat phase of the Persian Gulf War ends.