For Posterity's Sake         

A Royal Canadian Navy Historical Project


Then CCG Weather Ship ST. CATHARINES (1952)

HMCS St. Catharines K325

From the collection of Alvin Epp

Courtesy of Steve Epp

Click on the above photo to view a larger image


Battle honours and awards:  Atlantic  1943-44



Laid down: 02 May 1942

Launched: 05 Dec 1942

Commissioned: 31 Jul 1943

Paid off: 18 Nov 1945

Re-acquired by RCN: 1950 and transferred to Dept. of Transport as a weather ship

Fate: Broken up in Japan in 1968


Built by Yarrows Ltd., Esquimalt, BC, she was commissioned on 31 Jul 1943, at Esquimalt. Departing Esquimalt soon after, she arrived at Halifax on 04 Oct 1943 and in Nov 1943 sailed for the U.K. as a member of EG C-2. She was continuously employed on convoy duty until Oct 1944, and from Feb to Sep 1944 she was Senior Officer's ship. With six other escorts of convoy HX.280, she took part in the destruction of U-744 on 06 Mar 1944. After refitting at Shelburne from Oct to Dec, 1944, she went to Bermuda to work up and, on her return to Halifax, commenced tropicalization refit there. By the time this was completed in Aug 1945, the war was over and the ship was paid off on 18 Nov 1945. In 1947 she was sold to Marine Industries Ltd. and laid up at Sorel. Later re-sold to Morton Engineering & Drydock Co., Quebec City, she was re-acquired in 1950 and converted to a weather ship. Transferred to the Department of Transport, she was taken round to the west coast to be stationed in the North Pacific as of July, 1952. Replaced in March, 1967, by CGS Vancouver, she was broken Japan in 1968.


Commanding Officers

LCdr Herbert Coates Reynard Davis, RCNR - 31 Jul 1943 - 14 Mar 1944

LCdr Anthony Fenwick Pickard, OBE, RCNR - 15 Mar 1944 - 13 Dec 1944

LCdr J.P. Fraser - 14 Dec 1944 - 24 May 1945

Lt Adair Bruce Swain, RCNVR - 25 May 1945 - 03 Aug 1945

LCdr Louis de la Chesnaye Audette, RCNVR - 04 Aug 1945 - 18 Nov 1945


     In memory of those who have crossed the bar    

They shall not be forgotten


Agnew, Jack Bruce


Atchison, Hugh


Audette, Louis de la Chesnaye


5th Commanding Officer




Epp, Alvin







Leach, Kenneth







O'Connor, Harold R.


Pickard, Anthony Fenwick


2nd Commanding Officer





Stephenson, John Frederick


Taylor, Hugh





Ship's Mascots







U-Boats Sunk

U-744 (Oblt Heinz Blischke) a type VIIC U-boat, sunk on 06 Mar 1944 by HMCS St. Catharine K325, HMCS Chilliwack K131, HMCS Gatineau H61, HMCS Fennel K194, HMCS Chaudiere H99, HMS Icarus and HMS Keniworth Castle in position 52-01 N, 22-37 W. Of her crew of 51, there were 40 survivors


Former Crew Members

Annear, Ernest Arthur, Lt, RCNVR - 31 May 1945


Burnett, Philip Whitworth, Cdr, RN


Conlin, Ralph Herbert, Paym/Lt, RCNVR - 15 Apr 1944


Davis, Herbert Coates Reynard, LCdr, RCNR - 19 Apr 1943


Freeman, John Edward, Slt, RCNVR - Jan 1944


Gooderham, William George, Lt, RCNVR - 31 Jul 1943

Grudniski, Leo - 1950s (weathership)


Hillard, Thomas Richard, Lt, RCNVR - 01 Jul 1943 (Stand by) / 31 Jul 1943


Lawson, Thomas Duncan, Paym/Lt, RCNVR - 03 Feb 1945


McKee, George Eugene, Mate, RCNVR - 28 Apr 1943 (Stand by) / 31 Jul 1943


Munro, John Thomas, Lt(E), RCNVR - 10 Mar 1945

Parker, Rex Clement, Lt(E), RCNVR (Stand by) - 13 Jan 1943


Parsons, Keith Kenneth, Wt/Mech, RCN - 31 Jul 1943


Robertson, John M., Lt, RCNVR - 22 May 1944


Rowland, William John, Lt, RCNVR - 31 May 1945


Spicer, William Wright, Lt, RCNVR - 10 Jun 1943 / 31 Jul 1943


Swain, Adair Bruce, Lt, RCNVr - 31 Jul 1943



Photos and Documents



Personal photo gallery of Alvin Epp