For Posterity's Sake
A Royal Canadian Navy Historical Project
HMCS ALGONQUIN 283
The last of her class, she was built by the Davie Shipbuilding Co., Lauzon, and commissioned on 03 Nov 1973. In Nov 1974, Algonquin rescued the crew of the fishing vessel Paul & Maria, which was sinking 80 miles east of Halifax. In the fall of 1977, she took part in the Caribbean exercise CARIBOPS Ď77, in the process being the first of her class to cross the equator. On 26 Sep 1978, she relieved Huron as flagship of SNFL, staying with the Force until the end of the year. By the end of her tenth year in service, Algonquin had steamed more than 200,000 nautical miles and spent an actual three years at sea. During that period, she had taken part in more than twenty multinational exercises and completed four tours of duty with SNFL, three of them as flagship. On 01 Mar 1986, she responded to a call for help from the Dept. of Fisheries and Oceans, two of whose officers had boarded the Panamanian trawler Peonia 7. Ignoring orders to put in to St. Johnís, the vesselís captain had headed to sea with the DFO officers still on board. Algonquin overtook her and enforced the original orders. On 26 Oct 1987, she commenced her TRUMP refit at MIL Davie, Lauzon. Labour problems and contract disputes delayed completion of the work until 11 Oct 1991. On 29 Mar 1993, Algonquin sailed to join SNFL, again as flagship, and transited the Suez Canal to join the other NATO vessel in the Adriatic enforcing the blockade of the former Yugoslavia on 24 Jun 1993. She transferred to the west coast in Aug 1994. Early in 1995 she took part in an U.S. battle group training exercise off southern California. That fall, Algonquin test-fired her SM2 missile on the Pacific Missile Range in the Hawaiian Islands. On 18 Mar 1996 she left Esquimalt to participate in Exercise WESTPLOY '96, acting as flagship of a group including Preserver, Regina and Winnipeg. During three months the ships visited Japan, Russia and South Korea and afterward took part in RIMPAC '96 off Hawaii. In mid-Jan 1997, she began what was foreseen as a 12-month, $15 million refit but which proved to cost almost $25 million, re-entering service in May 1998. More exercises with Pacific rim countries followed during 2000 and 2001. On 23 Mar 2002, she departed Esquimalt for the Arabian Sea to support the U.S.-led coalition against international terrorism, arriving back on 14 Oct 2002. For the next decade she continued to act as the west coast flagship through a range of national and international exercises. On 12 Jun 2010, she was the command ship for Her Excellency Governor-General MichaŽlle Jean for the International Fleet Review marking the Canadian Naval Centennial. On 30 Aug 2013, HMCS Algonquin was involved in a collision with HMCS Protecteur which resulted in considerable damage to her hangar. The damage was never repaired and she was paid off on 11 Jun 2015. On 09 May 2016, the former HMCS Algonquin departed Esquimalt, BC, under tow, destined for Liverpool, NS to be broken up. In Jun 2016, she arrived alongside at the yard of R.J. MacIsaac Construction at Liverpoo to be broken up.
Note: The 5"54 cal gun on the 280s were named after the Oto Melara technicians who installed them and did the FSR work in Canada. The names for the guns were as follows: Iroquois - Pasquale, Huron - Tulio, Athabaskan - Leno and Algonquin - Luigi.