For Posterity's Sake
A Royal Canadian Navy Historical Project
HMCS MAYFLOWER K191
Built for the RN, she was commissioned at Montreal on 28 Nov 1940 as HMS Mayflower. She arrived at Halifax on 11 Dec 1940 to work up and complete stores. On 09 Feb 1941, Mayflower left with convoy HX.108 for the U.K., fitted, like her sister Hepatica, with a dummy gun. This and other shortcomings were look after on the Tyne River, where she was pronounced complete on 05 May 1941. On 15 May 1941, she was transferred to the RCN and commissioned as HMCS Mayflower K191. Soon after, she left Loch Ewe as a member of EG 4 with convoy OB.332 for Iceland on 10 Jun 1941. Later that month she joined Newfoundland Command, and for the remainder of the year served between Iceland at St. John's as an ocean escort. During this period she took part in the battle of convoy SC.44, when four merchant ships and HMCS Levis were lost, Mayflower taking off survivors of the latter. After a major refit at Charleston, S.C., from 09 Dec 1941 to 09 Feb 1942, Mayflower resumed her mid-ocean role on the "Newfie-Derry" run until Apr 1944. In Mar 1943, while escorting Convoy ON.77 from Liverpool, England, the SS Imperial Transport was torpedoed by U-94. Her crew was rescued by the Free French corvette Aconit. HMCS Mayflower was ordered to sink the stricken vessel at daybreak with gunfire. When daybreak came, a boarding party was sent over and it was determined she would be saved. Five days later, under escort of HMCS Mayflower, the SS Imperial Transport made port at St. John's, NFLD. (see RCN Memories - Salvaging the SS Imperial Transport) In Apr 1942, she became a member of EG A-3, transferring to C-3 in Feb 1943. She underwent two further long refits: from 29 Oct 1942 to 11 Jan 1943, at Pictou; and from 29 Nov 1943 to 14 Feb 1944, at Norfolk, Va. She received her extended fo'c's'le during the latter, following which she worked up in St. Margaret's Bay, then sailed on 21 Apr 1944 for the U.K. to join Western Approaches Command, Greenock, for invasion duties. She left Oban on 31 May 1944 to escort blockships for Normandy and arrived off the beaches on the day after D-Day. For the remainder of the war she operated in U.K. waters, and on 31 May 1945, was paid off for return to the RN. Laid up at Grangemouth, Scotland, she was broken up at Inverkeithing in 1949.