100 Years of Sub­marines

RCN News - - Contents -

Au­gust 5, 2014, marks 100 years since Canada ac­quired its first sub­marines and high­lights the pin­na­cle of com­mem­o­ra­tions by the RCN to honor and cel­e­brate the ded­i­cated ser­vice and con­tri­bu­tions of thou­sands of Cana­dian sub­mariners to our na­tion’s de­fence and se­cu­rity.

On Au­gust 5, 1914, the gov­ern­ment of Bri­tish Columbia se­cured the pur­chase of Canada’s first sub­marines – His Majesty’s Cana­dian Ships (HMCS) CC 1 and CC 2 – at the very start of the First World War in a trans­ac­tion with a Seat­tle ship­yard in or­der to counter the threat of a squadron of Ger­man Navy war­ships re­ported on the coast. This event marked the be­gin­ning of ser­vice in sub­marines for Canada.

In com­mem­o­ra­tion of the Cana­dian Sub­ma­rine Cen­te­nary, the RCN, along with serv­ing and veteran sub­mariners, reded­i­cated the re­fur­bished Cana­dian Sub­ma­rine Memo­rial Cairn at CFB Esquimalt on Au­gust 7. Rear-Ad­mi­ral Wil­liam Tru­elove, Com­man­der of Mar­itime Forces Pa­cific, presided at the event.

The RCN is col­lab­o­rat­ing with the Naval As­so­ci­a­tion of Canada in the pre­sen­ta­tion of a one-day aca­demic con­fer­ence on Oc­to­ber 2, at the Na­tional Arts Cen­tre in Ot­tawa, on the sub­ject of “Sub­marines in Canada: Past, Present and Fu­ture”.

On June 13, the Syn­chro­lift Sub­ma­rine Shel­ter (Build­ing D-294) in the Hal­i­fax Dock­yard was named for Cap­tain Bernard Leitch (“Barney”) John­son, CBE, DSO, RCNVR. John­son was the first Cana­dian ap­pointed to com­mand a sub­ma­rine, HMS H8 (in the Royal Navy dur­ing the First World War), and was dec­o­rated for his coura­geous lead­er­ship in sav­ing the sub­ma­rine and sail­ing it safely home through en­emy wa­ters after it struck an en­emy mine.

Be­gin­ning with HMCS CC 1 and CC 2, the RCN has com­mis­sioned a to­tal of 15 sub­marines through­out its his­tory. In ad­di­tion to the RCN sub­marines, Cana­dian sub­mariners also served with dis­tinc­tion on board Royal Navy sub­marines dur­ing both World Wars, and dur­ing the in­ter­ven­ing years fol­low­ing the Sec­ond World War un­til the First Cana­dian Sub­ma­rine Squadron was cre­ated in 1965.

In ad­di­tion to their wartime ser­vice, Cana­dian sub­mariners were ac­tive in a wide va­ri­ety of mis­sions. They as­sisted in train­ing Cana­dian al­lies in anti-sub­ma­rine war­fare and par­tic­i­pated ex­ten­sively in covert Cold War pa­trols where they tracked Soviet sub­marines and col­lected in­tel­li­gence. Cana­dian sub­mariners have also con­ducted counter-ter­ror­ism support for spe­cial op­er­a­tion forces and per­formed con­stab­u­lary roles in support of RCMP anti-nar­cotic op­er­a­tions, Depart­ment of Fish­eries and Oceans’ pa­trols, and il­le­gal im­mi­gra­tion in­ter­dic­tion op­er­a­tions.

Or­di­nary sea­man Hiebert, left, and for­mer chief petty of­fi­cer Don­ald Brown were cho­sen to place a new time cap­sule in the up­dated sub­ma­rine me­mori

al cairn.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.