For Posterity's Sake         

A Royal Canadian Navy Historical Project


They made the Ultimate Sacrifice


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Emma Mary Brunton


Civilian Passenger


Died: 30 Oct 1918 at sea


BRUNTON, Emma Mary -  was a civilian housekeeper at the Radiotelegraph Service Station at Triangle Island until 29 Oct 1918. On that day she boarded HMCS GALIANO for passage to Prince Rupert and from there she was to board another ship for passage south. Emma Brunton is the only female to have lost her life on a ship of the RCN during WW1.


On 29 Oct 1918 the GALIANO was sent with supplies to the light house at Triangle Island off Cape Scott at the northwestern tip of Vancouver Island. A number of her regular crew were unable to make the trip due to illness as the 1918 flu pandemic had reached her base at Esquimalt. She set out towards the Queen Charlotte Islands from Triangle Island at 5 pm on Oct 29th. When she made her only distress call at 3 am the next morning, she was estimated to be within visual range of the light at Cape St. James 95 miles from Triangle Island. She was never heard from again and went down with the loss of all hands.



First World War Casualty Index - RCN