FROM THE CHAIR – Commodore (ret’d) Calvin Mofford

It is difficult to believe that it has been 70 years since the Battle of the Atlantic reached its crescendo. At the height of the Battle, allied shipping was being sunk at the rate of 500,000 tons a month with a significant loss of life both to those in naval service and in the merchant marine. Yet this generation of Canadians kept on with commendable resolve and in the end prevailed. The personal anecdotes of those who served at sea at the time paint a picture of intolerable conditions at the mercy of: a truly inhospitable sea, a determined enemy and living conditions that bordered on the primitive. Endless periods of action stations and being constantly wet and cold were the constants of life at sea at the time. Engagements with the enemy were fierce and close aboard with depth charging, gun engagements and ramming being the normal course of events. Yet a fundamental core of humanity was evident when after the battle was done, survivors were rescued and treated to whatever comforts and care that could be mustered.
Canadians of today, have much to be thankful for. The sacrifices of previous generations, especially those who fought during the Second World War were real and meaningful. Their efforts ensured the liberal democracies that we see today and the international institutions that have given us extended periods of relative peace.
To all of our Trustees who served in and lived through this conflict a heartfelt thank you.
Commodore (ret’d) Calvin Mofford
Chair, Canadian Naval Memorial Trust
MESSAGE DU PRÉSIDENT Commodore (ret’d) Calvin Mofford ..en francais
July 2013

The 15th Annual Battle of the Atlantic Musical Concert with the pre-eminent Stadacona Band of the Royal Canadian Navy was a great success and I am pleased to report that we were sold out! Planning is already underway for a larger venue in 2014 with lots of parking. Tuesday, 29 April 2014 is tentatively booked so please mark this date on your calendar. For a glimpse of this year’s concert and an upbeat performance of the Sailors’ Hornpipe check: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IijRdT1rNJY

Many of you have generously donated your time to help, but we continue to look for volunteers. Some of our volunteers live outside Halifax and travel considerable distances to and from Sackville to participate in our activities. For example, Ted Kelly – Chair of the Battle of the Atlantic Place Project – travels from Lunenburg on the South Shore, Debbie Findlay, our Financial Administrator is well up the Eastern Shore near Sherbrooke, and a previous Chair, Hugh MacNeil, routinely traveled from the Annapolis Valley several times a week. We need volunteers to take on specific tasks, such the role of Editor of our newsletter, Action Stations. Pat Jessup has done a splendid job with it, but she is active in many other Canadian Naval Memorial Trust (CNMT) and community activities as well. She would be happy to have someone else under-study her for a few issues with athe view to take over production by the summer of 2014. We have an active Editorial Committee to support a new editor. A great thing about this task is that the editor of Action Stations could be anywhere in Canada, or indeed the world, as long as they have the skills and equipment. They would collate the inputs which contributors would feed to them, consult with the committee by sending them PDF drafts of the document, and then send the completed file to our publisher in the Halifax area once the final draft had been proofed. If anyone is interested, or would like to find out more about what is involved in putting together our magazine please contact Pat at pr@canadasnavalmemorial.ca

We need more guides to help interpret the ship to our visitors – half a day per week would be great. Training is available, and we will even issue you a uniform! Speaking of guides, Emma Wilson has been hired as an interpretative guide for July and August through the Federal Summer Jobs program. Emma, a recent graduate from the University of Guelph, will be starting her Masters in Political Science at Dalhousie University in the fall.

If one of you has experience in retail merchandising, Ross Thompson, our gift shop manager would be happy to have you help with his part ship. For one thing, we want to spruce up our look, expand our selection of merchandise and develop a more sophisticated marketing strategy with the view to be more attractive to our customer base. We are open for business and open for suggestions.

Finally, we could really use a volunteer coordinator, preferably from the Halifax area. This individual would maintain a list of volunteers and match tasks to those with the right skills and availability.

If you would like to discuss becoming a volunteer, please contact me at 902-721-1206 in the morning, or by email at execdir@canadasnavalmemorial.ca

It was wonderful to see so many familiar faces and those of you that traveled great distances to attend our recent AGM on 5 July. The presentations, lunch and evening reception were excellent and very well attended (a selection of onboard photos follow).

We were especially pleased that Bill Vautier, Past President of the Montreal Branch of the White Ensign Club, and other members of the former club were in attendance. This very supportive Branch, which has contributed over $20,000 to CNMT over the years has had to make the hard decision to disband after a decline in membership. As a parting measure of gener-osity and support, the Club decided to present a cheque for $1000 to the Trust. The significance of the cheque is that it represents a donation of $25 – in advance – for each of the last 40 members when they Cross the Bar. During the presentation Bill described the proud

Harold Harden, Francis Bernard Hughes, Art Rimmer, Andre Rousseau, Bill Vautier and James Moran from the White Ensign Club, Montreal gave a short history of his Club, and we were all very impressed with what they have accomplished. Thank you White Ensign Club for a job well done.

Also in attendance were S/Lt Reverend Canon Bill Thomas and his wife Jette from Stoney Creek who drove to Halifax with a significant artifact for the ship in their trunk. This was no small feat given that the artifact was a solid brass corvette wheelhouse engine room telegraph weighing in the neighbourhood of 100 pounds. The Thomas’s are ardent supporters of HMCS Sackville and they never leave without a box full of CNMT brochures to use to spread the good word in Ontario about our ship.

Among our many Trustees from away it was also good to see David Aspden, CNMT National Councillor and former mayor of Barrie Ontario. David is pictured in a red shirt below with CPO2 Lionel Thomas, currently serving in HMCS Ville de Quebec but soon to be our bar manager when he is posted ashore in the fall.

In closing I wish you and your families a splendid summer, and hope you will visit Sackville at her summer berth near the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic.

Yours aye,

Doug Thomas


Doug Thomas
– See more at: http://canadasnavalmemorial.ca/do_you_hear-there/trustee-program/#sthash.ZS279gly.dpuf

Photo Gallery
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AGM for Canadian Naval Memorial Trust June 28th 2017