Your Navy Today - Volume 4 Issue 7

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##MCECOPY##HMCS Harry DeWolf conducts drills during Operation Nanook


HMCS Harry DeWolf conducts drills during Operation Nanook on August 7.

Years of preparation and training were brought to bear on August 3, 2021, in Halifax, as the Royal Canadian Navy’s (RCN) newly commissioned Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ship, Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship (HMCS) Harry DeWolf, set sail on its first operational mission to Canada’s North.

The ship begins the four-month deployment with participation in Operation (Op) Nanook in the Arctic region, and will carry on by sailing through the Northwest Passage, something that hasn’t been done by a Canadian warship in more than 60 years. From there, Harry DeWolf will complete the circumnavigation of North America while supporting Operation Caribbe in the Eastern Pacific and Caribbean Sea.

“This is a mission that fully demonstrates the capabilities of our ship and the new capabilities of the RCN. This goes far beyond just focusing on sovereignty in the North – we’ll be doing all that this class of ship can do,” said Rear-Admiral Brian Santarpia, Commander of Maritime Forces Atlantic and Joint Task Force Atlantic, as he saw the ship and crew off from the jetty.

Crew members from HMCS Winnipeg


Crew members from HMCS Winnipeg wave as they departed Her Majesty’s Canadian Dockyard Esquimalt, en route for Operations Projection and Neon.

Friends and family were amongst the well-wishers as HMCS Winnipeg departed Esquimalt, B.C., on August 17 to begin a four-month deployment to the Asia-Pacific region on Operations Projection and Neon.

“As a tool of our national power, the Navy has been asked to maintain a presence in that part of the world and Winnipeg is taking up that torch,” said Commodore David Mazur, Commanding Officer Canadian Fleet Pacific, before the ship left.

Winnipeg is taking over Op Projection from HMCS Calgary, which returned home on August 30.

Under the mandate of Op Projection, Winnipeg will conduct forward naval presence operations in the region to further strengthen Canada’s relations with partners in the area.

Under Op Neon – Canada’s contribution to enforcing United Nations Security Council sanctions imposed against North Korea – Winnipeg will be responsible for conducting surveillance and identifying vessels suspected of maritime sanction evasion activities.

A member of HMCS Calgary celebrates his homecoming


A member of HMCS Calgary celebrates his homecoming with family on August 30.

After completing its rotations on Ops Projection and Artemis, HMCS Calgary returned home to Esquimalt on August 30 after being deployed since February.

Early in the mission during Op Artemis, while working with the 34-nation Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) and the Canadian-led Combined Task Force 150, the ship conducted maritime interdiction operations in the Arabian Sea, intended to stop the flow of illicit revenue to regional criminal and terrorist organizations.

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

Following Artemis, the ship returned to Op Projection, and participated in Exercise Talisman Sabre 21 with Australian and American partners to ensure interoperability and to improve security and stability in the region. Other participants in the maritime component of the exercise included the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force and the Republic of Korea Navy.

Before beginning the transit home, the ship made port in Auckland, and the crew were treated with exceptional hospitality from their Royal New Zealand Navy counterparts.

HMCS Fredericton


HMCS Fredericton passes under the Great Belt Bridge as it enters the Baltic Sea.

HMCS Fredericton replaced HMCS Halifax as the flagship of Standing NATO Maritime Group 1 (SNMG1) this month, and is currently deployed in the North Atlantic as part of Canada’s Op Reassurance.

So far in the deployment, Fredericton successfully conducted two replenishments-at-sea with the Royal Fleet Auxiliary’s Tide-class tanker Tiderace, enhancing the RCN’s ability to operate with other navies. The ship also participated in cross-deck flight operations with the Icelandic Coast Guard, performing advanced hoist training, an important capability used during search and rescue missions.

On August 26, Fredericton welcomed Commander Luis Falcato and the crew of Navio da República Portuguesa Corte-Real of the Portuguese Navy to the Task Group in Reykjavik, Iceland during a short port visit.

HMCS Shawinigan


HMCS Shawinigan returned home to HMC Dockyard in Halifax on August 9 after a successful Operation Caribbe deployment.

On August 9, HMCS Shawinigan returned to Halifax after a successful and historic counter-narcotics operation as part of Op Caribbe.

Working with the Law Enforcement Detachment of the United States Coast Guard Southeast, the crew of Shawinigan intercepted nearly 2,800 kg of cocaine, worth an estimated $70 million USD, in four interdictions in the Caribbean Sea.

The first two raids took place between July 12 and 13, and resulted in the seizure of almost 1,350 kg of cocaine. Another 675 kg of cocaine was seized on July 18 after crewmembers boarded a small vessel, with an additional 774 kg intercepted in another raid on July 21.

After a successful completion of their mission, Commander Bill Sanson, Shawinigan’s Commanding Officer, said the ship’s company was looking forward to a well-earned rest at home.

“Everyone is really happy to be reunited with their families… and to get back to normal a little bit. They really deserve it.”

Sailor 3rd Class Hope Hakkarainen


Sailor 3rd Class Hope Hakkarainen

The Raven Program is back in 2021 after a one-year shutdown in response to the COVID-19 crisis. The program, run by Naval Fleet School Pacific, blends Indigenous cultures and techniques with military training.

Forty-five participants were on-site in Esquimalt, beginning July 8. The program began with a four-day Culture Camp, where the recruits learned about Canada’s Métis, First Nations and Inuit cultures before moving on to Basic Military Qualification training.

This year’s program concluded on August 12. Upon completion, successful participants were given the option to continue their Canadian Armed Forces journey as members of the Regular Force or the Primary Reserves.

The overarching intention of the Raven Program is to bring together people from across Canada, both military and Indigenous, to start building relationships, experiences and connections to our nation’s Indigenous and military roots.

A new memorial garden has been dedicated to SLt Abbigail Cowbrough


A new memorial garden has been dedicated to SLt Abbigail Cowbrough.

A memorial flower garden in honour of Sub-Lieutenant (SLt) Abbigail Cowbrough was officially dedicated on July 30 at the Veteran Farm Project in Sweet’s Corner, N.S. – a veteran-run organization that grows farm produce for food packages for veterans and families in need.

Describing the Veteran Farm Project and how it has evolved into a healing space for women veterans who volunteer at the farm, owner Jessica Miller said the idea of creating a garden in SLt Cowbrough’s memory seemed a natural fit.

SLt Cowbrough died on April 29, 2020, when the CH-148 Cyclone helicopter she was in crashed into the sea off the coast of Greece, while returning to HMCS Fredericton after a training flight as part of Op Reassurance.

Master Sailor shoulder boards


Master Sailor shoulder boards.

Three sailors from HMCS Winnipeg were recently promoted to the rank of Master Sailor as part of the RCN’s efforts to address the shortfall of Shipborne Air Controllers on warships.

Along with their fast-track promotion comes a substantial pay hike, the goal of which is to entice combat operators from the naval trades of Naval Combat Information Operator (NCIOP), Naval Electronics Sensor Operator, and Sonar Operator to take the additional training to become a Shipborne Air Controller.

Shipborne Air Controllers are responsible for the tactical air control of helicopters and fixed wing maritime aircraft (excluding fighter jets). Their job and title is a NATO qualification granted to qualified combat operators from the noted specific naval trades.

Combat operators can request the course once they attain the rank of Sailor 1st Class (S1), with a recommendation from their Commanding Officer and career manager.

S2 Saif Morsy


S2 Saif Morsy, Maritime Forces Atlantic’s Defence Visible Minority Advisory Group co-chair.

During an online meeting held to mark the occasion, Sailor 2nd Class (S2) Saif Morsy was named Maritime Forces Atlantic’s Defence Visible Minority Advisory Group (DVMAG) military co-chair, taking over from Lieutenant-Commander Paul Smith.

“This is the first time I’ve been involved in something like this. I experienced racism growing up but I never felt before that I had an avenue to effectively deal with it,” said S2 Morsey. “When I found DVMAG and learned about the opportunity to get involved, I took it on.”

S2 Morsy, who has Egyptian heritage, says he dealt with racism growing up in Oakville, Ont., but not since joining the Navy in 2017 until an incident last year.

“I want to help encourage others to have the agency to take care of situations that either they personally go through or have witnessed,” he said. “The more avenues you can provide people to deal with situations, the better it will be for everyone.”

CPO1 Alena Mondelli


Capt(N) Sean Williams, CFB Halifax Base Commander, hands the ceremonial drill cane to incoming Base Chief Petty Officer CPO1 Alena Mondelli.

Meet Chief Petty Officer 1st Class (CPO1) Alena Mondelli. CPO1 Mondelli recently became the 23rd Canadian Forces Base Halifax Base Chief.

“I have broken many layers of glass in the RCN for women non-commissioned members,” CPO1 Mondelli said. “It wasn’t my intention to break glass. I just did my best with what I had.”

S1 Ron Hiscock


S1 Ron Hiscock

Meet S1 Ron Hiscock, the sailor responsible for HMCS Goose Bay’s gunshield art. He joined the Naval Reserve at the age of 47, after debating whether to join the service since he was in high school!

Navy Bike Ride - Register now!

The fifth annual Navy Bike Ride has officially come to a close and this year we achieved incredible results!

The 2021 Virtual Harry DeWolf Challenge was a record-breaking success, with over 3,000 participants, and 2,011 teams joining us to ride almost 700,000 km! From June to August, riders young and old joined us to help celebrate the inaugural deployment of HMCS Harry DeWolf and raise funds for two important charities. With the generous support of our sponsors and riders, $102,325 was raised in support of the Royal Canadian Naval Benevolent Fund and Support Our Troops. Together we made waves!

Don’t forget to like and follow the Navy Bike Ride on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to be kept up to date on all things Navy Bike Ride, including news on next year’s event.

NDWCC Banner

The National Defence Workplace Charitable Campaign (NDWCC) is the Department of National Defence and Canadian Armed Forces’ contribution to the larger Government of Canada Workplace Charitable Campaign (GCWCC).

This year’s Champion, Commander RCN, Vice-Admiral Craig Baines, recently shared a Message to the Defence Team.

This year’s slogan, “Stronger Together”, was chosen with the theme of inclusivity and the sentiment of togetherness. A great reminder that despite the hardships of the past year, the community ties that bind us remain in place.

In Ottawa, this year’s NDWCC kicked off on September 10 with the 21st annual Vice Chief of the Defence Staff Canoe Race – watch a recording of the event’s live stream on the Royal Canadian Navy Facebook page!

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:

  • Canadian maritime security;
  • Canadian naval policy;
  • Canadian naval issues;
  • Canadian naval operations;
  • History/historical operations of the RCN;
  • Global maritime issues (such as piracy, smuggling, fishing, environment);
  • Canadian oceans policy and issues;
  • Arctic maritime issues;
  • Maritime transport and shipping.

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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