Wickes Class Destroyer (USN)


Town Class Destroyer (RCN)






From the collection of Jim Silvester

Courtesy of Jim Silvester


Laid down: 25 Mar 1918

Launched: 04 Jul 1918

Commissioned: 01 Mar 1919

Paid off: 1922

Re-commissioned: 1940

Paid off: 24 Sep 1940

Transferred to RCN: 24 Sep 1940

Commissioned: 24 Sep 1940

Paid off: 23 Aug 1944

Fate: unknown


Commissioned on 01 Mar 1919 as USS WILLIAMS, she served with the Pacific Fleet until 1922, when she was laid up at San Diego. Re-commissioned in 1940, she served briefly with the Neutrality Patrol before being transferred to the RCN at Halifax on 24 Sep 1940, as HMCS ST CLAIR. Assigned to EG 4, Greenock, she arrived in the Clyde on 11 Dec 1940 to undertake escort duty for Western Approaches Command. On 24 May 1941, ST CLAIR was diverted to assist in the search for the battleship Bismarck by Home Fleet ships. On 27 May 1941, during the return passage to Clyde, after the search for the German battleship Bismarck, with HMS TARTAR and  HMS MASHONA, they were attacked by five German bombers west of Galway, Ireland. HMCS ST CLAIR shot down one of the bomber; HMCS MASHONA was hit by bombs and capsized. After picking up MASHONA'S survivors, ST CLAIR sank the hulk. Assigned to NEF, she collided with the oiler Clam on 17 Jun 1941, shortly after her arrival St. St. John's, and remained under repairs until 02 Dec 1941. In Mar 1942, she joined WLEF and in Jun 1943, was assigned to its EG W-2. Except for two-months' absence that summer, attached to HMCS CORNWALLIS, she remained with the group until Dec 1943, when she was ordered to St. Margaret's Bay to serve as a depot ship for RN submarines used as A/S training. In May 1944, she was taken to Halifax for repairs, remaining there until paid off 23 Aug 1944. She was then reduced to a firefighting and damage control training hulk in Bedford Basin, where her remains still lay as late as 1950.



Photos and Documents          The Ship's Bell



Commanding Officers


LCdr Dickson Carlisle Wallace, RCNR - 24 Sep 1940 - 05 Apr 1942


LCdr Gerald Ormsby Baugh, OBE, RCNR - 06 Apr 1942 - 11 Jan 1944


Lt James Evelyn Burnett, RCNVR - 08 Mar 1944 - 23 Aug 1944



     In memory of those who made the ultimate sacrifice    

     Lest We Forget     



Stoker 1c, RCNVR

died - 24 Dec 1941



     In memory of those who have crossed the bar    

They shall not be forgotten




Former Crew Members


Beaman, Arthur Christie Cooks, Lt (E), RCNR - 10 Feb 1942


Boynett, George - 1943


Conyers, Harold Elrod, Lt, RCNVR - 22 Apr 1943


Dundas, Robert Montague, Lt, RCNVR - 20 May 1942


Graham, James Wallace, Surg-LCdr, RCNVR - 19 Jul 1943


Koughan, William Harling, LCdr, RCNR - 09 Jul 1943

Lee, John Taylor, Lt, RCVNR - 26 Jul 1941


Maughan, George Burnville, Surg/Lt, RCNVR - Jan 1942


McLellan, Vernon (Bunn), Wireless Operator 


Rideout, William George, Lt, RCNVR - 30 Mar 1943


Sanders, Robert Lewis, Lt (E), RCNVR - 30 Jun 1943

Thomson, Graeme Evans, Lt, RCNVR - Jan 1942


Todd, William Lawrence, Lt (E), RCNVR - 18 Apr 1943


White, Richard Paul, Lt, RCNVR - 23 Jun 1941


Willson, William Herbert, Lt, RCN - 03 Feb 1942



Photos and Documents


George Boynett, from Toronto, ON, on HMCS ST CLAIR I65 in 1943


From the collection of AB Howard Charles Abbott, RCNVR


Courtesy of Roger Litwiller

Fire Fighting and Damage Control Training on the hulk of the former HMCS ST CLAIR, Bedford Basin, Halifax, NS, 20 Mar 1945






DND/RCN photos / Crown Copyright

From the collection of James A. Senior, RCN

Courtesy of Bob Senior