For Posterity's Sake
A Royal Canadian Navy Historical Project
This page is not meant to be a comprehensive history of HMS Courageous, but a record of sailors of the ROYAL CANADIAN NAVY who served in her, photos they took and stories they may have shared with their families.
HMS Courageous was the lead ship of the Courageous Class cruisers built during WW1. She participated in the Second Battle of Heligoland Bight in November 1917 and was present when the German High Seas Fleet surrendered a year later. Between the wars she was converted into an aircraft carrier capable of carrying 48 aircraft. Throughout the inter-war years, she served in the Home Fleet, the Atlantic Fleet and the Mediterranean Fleet. On 17 Sep 1939, while Courageous was out on an anti-submarine patrol with 4 destroyer escorts, two of her escorts were detached to assist a merchant under attack. During this period, Courageous turned into the wind to launch her aircraft - and was his by two of three torpedoes fired from U-29. She sank in 20 minutes with a loss of 519 of her crew, including the Captain. The two remaining escorts hunted the U-boat for 4 hours, but U-29 managed to escape.