HMCS CLAYOQUOT J174

 

Bangor Class Minesweeper

 


 

HMCS Clayoquot J174

Source: Canadian War Museum

George Metcalf Archival Collection CWM 19990081-016_2

Courtesy of the Canadian War Museum

 

Battle honours and awards:  Atlantic  1942-44,   Gulf of St. Lawrence  1942

 

 

Laid down: 20 Jun 1940

Launched: 03 Oct 1940

Commissioned: 22 Aug 1941

Fate: Sunk on 24 Dec 1944

 

Laid down as HMS Esperanza, she was renamed CLAYOQUOT J174 in 1940. Named after Clayoquot Sound, Vancouver Island, she was commissioned at Prince Rupert on 02 Aug 1941. After working up, she left Esquimalt on 10 Oct 1941 for Halifax, arriving 14 Nov 1941. Initially assigned to Halifax Local Defence Force, she was transferred in Mar 1942, to WLEF and in May 1942 to Gulf Escort Force. While serving with Gulf Escort Force she rescued 55 survivors of HMCS CHARLOTTETOWN, torpedoed and sunk near Cap Chat on 11 Sep 1942. In Oct 1942 CLAYOQUOT joined Sydney Force. She arrived at Halifax on 29 Dec 1942 for a major refit, which was progressively carried out there and at Liverpool and Pictou, N.S. Completing her refit in May 1943, she re-joined Sydney Force in Jul 1943 after working up. In Jan 1944, she was transferred to HMCS CORNWALLIS for officers' training in A/S warfare, and in Oct 1944 was re-assigned to Halifax Force. On 24 Dec 1944, while taking station on convoy XB.139, she was torpedoed and sunk three miles from Sambro Light Vessel by U- 806, losing eight of her crew.

 

The following is from McLean, Douglas M. (1994) "A Loss of the HMCS CLAYOQUOT," Canadian Military History: Vol. 3: Iss. 2, Article 4 - The torpedo struck without warning. HMCS CLAYOQUOT was returning from an anti-submarine sweep in the approaches to Halifax harbour when its stern rose into the air, mangled by the detonation of a German T-5 acoustic homing torpedo. The men aboard felt two concussions, the second likely being depth charges stored on CLAYOQUOT'S stern set off by the torpedo. Whatever the details, the explosions were devastating for the small Bangor class minesweeper. A grainy photograph of the doomed ship shows the stern blasted vertical, the ship listing to starboard. CLAYOQUOT lasted barely ten minutes after being hit, just long enough for all but eight of her crew to escape. The worst fate befell two young officers trapped in the port forward-cabin. These men called out through a port hole for axes to chop their way to freedom, but all the axes were underwater. The merciless sea closed around them as the ship vanished.

 


 

Photos and Documents

 


 

Commanding Officers

 

A/LCdr George Alexander Victor Thomson, RCNR - 28 Aug 1941 - 18 Nov 1941

A/LCdr R.B. Campbell, RCNR - 19 Nov 1941 - 13 Apr 1942

Lt Henry Ernest Lade, RCNR - 14 Apr 1942 - 07 Apr 1943

Lt Claude Lane Campbell, RCNVR - 08 Apr 1943 - 05 Mar 1944

Lt Donald Richard Baker, RCNVR - 06 Mar 1944 - 11 Apr 1944

Lt Claude Lane Campbell, RCNVR - 12 Apr 1944 - 15 Jun 1944

Lt Murdo (Red) Smith, RCNR - 16 Jun 1944 - 28 Jul 1944

A/LCdr Alexander Craig Campbell, RCNVR - 29 Jul 1944 - 24 Dec 1944

 


 

     In memory of those who made the ultimate sacrifice    

     Lest We Forget     

 

BATE, John Redvers

OS, V75753, RCNVR

MPK - 24 Dec 1944

BROZOVICH, Walter

OS, V70636, RCNVR

MPK - 24 Dec 1944

COLBECK, Arthur W.

SLt, RCNVR

MPK - 24 Dec 1944

FINLAY, Paul William

Lt, RCNVR

MPK - 24 Dec 1944

HILYARD, Edmond

AB, 4229, RCN

MPK - 24 Dec 1944

MUNRO, William James

SLt, RCNVR

MPK - 24 Dec 1944

Drafted to Clayoquot on 07 Jul 1944 as Slt, RCNVR

NEIL, John D.

Lt (E), RCNVR

MPK - 24 Dec 1944

SMITH, Lloyd Welsey

AB, V1796, RCNVR

MPK - 24 Dec 1944

 

 

 


 

     In memory of those who have crossed the bar    

They shall not be forgotten

 

(s) - Survived the sinking of HMCS Clayoquot

 

 


 

Former Crew Members

 

(s) - Survived the sinking of HMCS CLAYOQUOT

 

Batt, Alex, Coder (of Islington, ON) (s)


Beaulieu, Joseph D.M.G. Sto PO, RCNVR (s)

 

Cameron, Alan Malcolm, SLt (E), RCNVR - 15 Apr 1944

 

Cameron, Milton Leslie Alexander, Lt, RCNVR (of Halifax) (s)

 

Campbell, Claude Lane, Lt, RCNVR - 06 Mar 1944

 

Carnine, Grant Leroy, SLt, RCNVR - 28 Jul 1943

 

Colbeck, Arthur Wayne, SLt, RCNVR - 08 Apr 1944

 

Carlstrom, Edward Bjorn, SLt (E), RCNVR - 20 Apr 1944

 

Dorion, Phil, Cook (of Canora, ON) (s)

 

Fitzpatrick, James William, SLt, RCNVR - 19 Apr 1943 

Georges, Joseph Bertrand, Stoker (s)

 

Huck, George D., Tel (of Guelph, ON) (s)


Jones, Austin Henry, LS, RCNVR (of St. Lambert) (s)

 

Kenny, Ronald William, Sig (of Fredercton, NB) (s)

 

Luty, August, SA (of Winnipeg, MB) (s)

 

MacKenzie, Laurrie (s)

 

Mancini, Harry, Stoker, RCN (s)

 

McCaffrey, George Frederick William, SLt, RCNVR - 24 May 1943

 

McDonald, Bob 

 

McLeese, William Stewart, Lt (E), RCNVR - 17 Feb 1944

 

Mitchell, G. (s)

 

Morrison, Alan Robert, Stewart, RCNVR (s)

Murray, Allan, Sto (of Souris, MB) (s)

 

Nelles, Malcolm Kenyon, Lt, RCNVR - 15 Feb 1944

 

Ohlson, Albert, Sto PO (of Stettler, AB) 

 

Page, Marcel Raymond, Mate, RCNR - 19 Mar 1943

 

Petrie, Willy, L/Coder, RCN (of Ottawa) (s)

 

Power, Lorne 

 

Priest, Gordon, OS (s)

 

Smith, Malcolm Edward, SLt, RCNVR - 22 Mar 1943

 

Thomson, George Alston, A/LCdr, RCNR - 20 Jun 1941

 

Tindall, E.A., AB (of Timmins, ON) (s)

 

Williams, R.  (s) 

 


 

Photos and Documents

 

HMCS CLAYOQUOT J174 circa 1941-42

 

Photo taken from HMCS QUINTE J166

 

From the collection of George Crewe

Courtesy of Catherine Crewe

 

   HMCS CLAYOQUOT J174 in the Halifax approaches - 09 Jul 1941

HMCS CLAYOQUOT J174

Christmas Card

 

The Last Patrol of CLAYOQUOT, Christmas Eve 1944

 

Courtesy of Gerald Sullivan

Christmas Card

 

HMCS CLAYOQUOT J174 - 1942

 

Courtesy of Gerald Sullivan

HMCS CLAYOQUOT J174

 

From the collection of François Messier, AB, RCNVR

 

Courtesy of Denis Messier

 

WM25

WM26

WM27

(WM25-WM27) HMCS CLAYOQUOT - Immediately after being hit by acoustics torpedo at No. 1 Buoy, Halifax Approaches, 24 Dec 1944, 1042 P.  Ships in Company - HMCS KIRLAND LAKE, HMCS TRANSCONA

 

From the collection of Lt William J. Miller, RCNVR 

 

Courtesy of Heather Edwards

 

 

Survivors from HMCS Clayoquot being brought aboard HMCS Fennel

Source: Canada at War

Newspaper clipping Lt Finlay, Lost at Sea

Source: Canadian Virtual War Memorial

Newspaper clipping on the death of Slt Munro

Source: Canadian Virtual War Memorial

 

Newspaper article on the sinking of HMCS Clayoquot

Montreal Daily Star 31 Jan 1945

Courtesy of Peggy Higginson

Jack Maloney on HMCS Clayoquot J174 - starboard side, forward by the bridge.

Courtesy of David Hamilton

HMCS  Clayoquot J174

Courtesy of David Hamilton

Newspaper article on Jack Maloney home on survivors leave after the sinking of HMCS CLAYOQUOT J174

The Harrow Sentinel, Amherstburg, ON, 01 Feb 1945

Newspaper article on survivors of HMCS CLAYOQUOT J174 being landed from HMCS FENNEL

 

The Harrow Sentinel, Amherstburg, ON, 01 Feb 1945

 

Article on Casualties and Ottawa district survivors of the sinking of HMCS CLAYOQUOT

 

The Ottawa Evening Citizen 31 Jan 1945

 

Courtesy of "Operation Picture Me"

Survivors of the sinking of HMCS CLAYOQUOT from the province of Quebec

Survivors of the sinking of HMCS CLAYOQUOT from the province of Ontario

 

From the collection of J. Vincent Wesley, CPO, RCNVR

 

Courtesy of Marilynn Taylor

 


 

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