Your Navy Today - Volume 4 Issue 5

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The ship’s company of HMCS Harry DeWolf


The ship’s company of HMCS Harry DeWolf gives three cheers during the commissioning ceremony.

In a commissioning ceremony held in Halifax on June 26, 2021, the Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) welcomed into service the first Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ship, Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship (HMCS) Harry DeWolf, while thousands of Canadians and RCN team members watched virtually.

In addition to the commissioning, the ship and its crew have also marked other milestones recently, including landing a CH-148 Cyclone helicopter on its flight deck on May 19, and conducting warm weather trials off of Puerto Rico in April.

HMCS Harry DeWolf – the first new ship commissioned into the RCN in more than 20 years – is named in honour of wartime Canadian naval hero Vice-Admiral Harry DeWolf. This is the first time in its 111-year history that the RCN has named a class of ships after a prominent Canadian Navy figure. The five additional ships in the class will be named to honour other prominent RCN heroes who served their country with the highest distinction.

Members of the Canadian Armed Forces contingent, deployed on Operation Unifier


Members of the Canadian Armed Forces contingent, deployed on Operation Unifier supporting Exercise Sea Breeze 21, participate in the exercise’s opening ceremony in Odesa, Ukraine, on June 28.

The Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) deployed 24 military personnel to Odesa, Ukraine, to participate in Exercise Sea Breeze 21 from June 28 to July 10.

This annual exercise was co-hosted by the United States Navy and the Ukrainian Navy, with the support of NATO’s Partnership for Peace program. The CAF delegation supporting this exercise was comprised of RCN clearance divers from Fleet Diving Units Pacific and Atlantic, members from the Naval Tactical Operations Group (NTOG) and staff officer mentors.

The RCN’s participation in Exercise Sea Breeze 21 was part of Operation Unifier, the CAF military training and capacity-building mission in Ukraine.

Crew members of HMCS Calgary prepare narcotics for disposal


Crew members of HMCS Calgary prepare narcotics for disposal during counter-smuggling operations on May 17 in the Arabian Sea during Operation Artemis and as part of Combined Task Force 150.

On June 14, HMCS Calgary finished off a successful two-month rotation of Operation Artemis where, working with the 34-nation Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) and the Canadian-led Combined Task Force 150 (CTF-150), the ship conducted maritime interdiction operations intended to stop the flow of illicit revenue to regional criminal and terrorist organizations.

HMCS Calgary set two records while on this mission. Its 17 successful counter-narcotics seizures were the most any single ship has made on any rotation in the history of CMF – setting the record not only in terms of the number of seizures, but also in terms of the weight of narcotics seized and wholesale dollar value. The ship also set the record for the largest single heroin seizure in CMF history.

The ship has now moved on to the second leg of Operation Projection. The major highlight of this will be participation in Exercise Talisman Sabre in late July. The ship is set to return to Esquimalt, B.C., in early September.

HMC Ships Brandon and Saskatoon


HMC Ships Brandon and Saskatoon returned home to Esquimalt on May 20, after a successful Op Caribbe.

HMC Ships Brandon and Saskatoon returned to Esquimalt, B.C., on May 20, following a successful deployment on Op Caribbe, working with embarked United States Coast Guard law enforcement officers to counter drug trafficking activities in the Eastern Pacific.

The mission’s goal is to not only keep drugs off North American streets, but to ultimately stop the funding of criminal organizations that use drugs as a revenue source.

USS Mount Whitney


USS Mount Whitney, the command and control ship for Exercise Steadfast Defender.

The RCN’s Commodore (Cmdre) Marcel Hallé, who is currently serving with NATO’s Allied Maritime Command, was the exercise director.

The exercise officially began on May 12 and ended June 22. Part one of the exercise’s maritime component ran from May 20 to 30 off the coast of Portugal.

Steadfast Defender was the first large test of NATO’s adapted command structure and involved two new commands: one focused on logistics, Joint Support and Enabling Command, based in Germany, and the other focused on the Atlantic, Joint Force Command Norfolk, based in Virginia.

With participation from 20 Allies from North America and Europe, the exercise helped improve the interoperability of Allied forces and military mobility throughout Europe.

AB George William Boyer


AB George William Boyer

Able Seaman (AB) George William Boyer, a Métis sailor, served in the RCN during the Second World War.

The war instantly became a reality for AB Boyer when the ship he served in was torpedoed by a German submarine in August 1944. Since AB Boyer was not injured from the explosion, he volunteered to be part of the skeleton crew to safely bring the ship back to port in Scotland.

AB Andy Bougie


AB Andy Bougie

Serving as a radar operator during the Battle of the Atlantic, AB Andy Bougie served in HMCS Skeena when the ship sunk a German U-boat with a depth charge.

This was a significant contribution as convoys were vulnerable to enemy U-boat attacks. The enemy wanted to sink Allied ships carrying goods across the Atlantic to cut off supply lines.

HMCS Corner Brook


HMCS Corner Brook during its undocking process.

When HMCS Corner Brook began its undocking on June 13, it became the most modern submarine in the RCN. Corner Brook had been in an Extended Docking Work Period (EDWP) since 2014 in Esquimalt, B.C.

In addition to repairs, the EDWP included several notable upgrades, such as a new communication mast, called the Universal Modular Mast, which will allow high-speed, highly secure, jam-resistant satellite communications with shore, and the BQQ-10 sonar suite.

PO2 John Reid McDougall


PO2 John Reid McDougall with the garden he started from seeds in the Flight Deck Control Room of HMCS Halifax.

Petty Officer 2nd Class (PO2) John Reid McDougall, who was deployed on Operation Reassurance in HMCS Halifax, decided to take on a new hobby while at sea. After buying soil and building a planter during a port visit, PO2 McDougall planted seeds from fruits he ate. The garden was a great hit with the crew.

Cdr Amber Comisso


Cdr Amber Comisso is taking part in the documentary Our Time Has Come: Women Who Lead.

Commander (Cdr) Amber Comisso will be part of a new documentary focused on gender equity, “Our Time Has Come: Women Who Lead”, by Vancouver-based filmmaker Adrian Juric. Cdr Comisso has served over 23 years as a naval officer and recently completed a posting as Executive Officer of HMCS Winnipeg. This documentary celebrates women’s achievement, something that Cdr Comisso acknowledges through her leadership style.

HMCS Oriole


HMCS Oriole, the RCN’s sail-training vessel.

Launched in June 1921, HMCS Oriole marked its centennial as the oldest ship in the RCN. Oriole was commissioned in 1954 as part of the RCN fleet. The ship’s primary role today is as a training vessel and for public outreach. Originally built for George Gooderham of the Royal Canadian Yacht Club, Oriole is a Bermuda-rigged sail training ketch.

PO1 Hart (left) and Lt(N) Dyck (right)


PO1 Hart (left) and Lt(N) Dyck (right) are part of the Naval Tactical Operations Group aboard HMCS Calgary.

Lieutenant (Navy) (Lt(N)) Steve Dyck, Petty Officer 1st Class Ryan Hart and Reef played a big part in the ship’s success, as they were the ones who searched for and seized the drugs as part of the naval boarding party.

S2 Yunus Kurt and S3 Ahmad Bitar


S2 Yunus Kurt and S3 Ahmad Bitar both observed Ramadan at sea while on deployment with HMCS Halifax. The two sailors received an accommodation to grow their facial hair just for Ramadan.

Master Sailor Jefren Liu


Master Sailor Jefren Liu, a Naval Combat Information Operator, worked to implement the new data-sharing systems during TGEX 21-01.

These upgrades are being implemented on Kingston-class Maritime Coastal Defence Vessels and the rest of the fleet to share sensor information with each other instantaneously and around the globe.

This new system means tactical data is shared instantly via satellite technology to all other assets on the network.

Lt(N) Joe Cheng


Lt(N) Joe Cheng

Lt(N) Blake Zazula


Lt(N) Blake Zazula

LCdr Sarah Stainton


LCdr Sarah Stainton

Navy Bike Ride - Register now!

The fifth annual Navy Bike Ride (NBR) launched just over a month ago, and we are incredibly proud of each and every one of our riders helping us to reach our goal.

Haven’t signed up yet? You’re in luck! Registration is ongoing for this FREE virtual event on now until August 29. Visit our website to register NOW! With over $17,000 in prizes to be won throughout the summer, you won’t want to miss out on your opportunity to win!

Have you heard? As a Regular or Reserve member, your unit can win prizes in the new “Masthead Challenge,” where RCN units (Regular and Reserve) create an NBR team and attempt to become the naval unit logging the most rides this summer. Cyclists do not need to ride all together, and are encouraged to respect physical distancing local requirements.

Together we ride. Together we make waves.

Canadian Naval Review (CNR) is holding its annual essay competition again in 2021. There will be a $1,000 prize for the best essay, provided by the Canadian Naval Memorial Trust. The winning essay will be published in CNR. Other non-winning essays will also be considered for publication, subject to editorial review.

Essays submitted to the contest should relate to the following topics:

Contest Guidelines and Judging

The essays will be assessed by a panel of judges on the basis of a number of criteria including readability, breadth, importance, accessibility and relevance. The decision of the judges is final. All authors will be notified of the judges’ decision within two months of the submission deadline.


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