For Posterity's Sake         

A Royal Canadian Navy Historical Project


HMCS St. Laurent H83

Photo from the Flickr collection of Ron Bell


Battle honours and awards:  Atlantic  1939-45,   Normandy  1944



Laid down: 01 Dec 1930

Launched: 29 Sep 1931

Commissioned: 09 Apr 1932

Paid off:: 30 Sep 1936

Transferred to the RCN: 01 Feb 1937

Commissioned: 17 Feb 1937

Paid off: 10 Oct 1945

Fate: Broken up in 1947


HMS Cygnet was a C-class destroyer built for the Royal Navy in the early 1930s. After the ship commissioned on 09 Apr 1932, she was assigned to the 2nd Destroyer Flotilla of the Home Fleet. She spent a lot of time in dockyard hands during her first two years of service. She was repaired at Devonport in Nov 1932 - Jan 1933, Mar - May 1933, July - Aug 1933 and Nov 1933 - Jan 1934 before deploying to the West Indies with the Home Fleet between Jan and Mar 1934. The ship required more repairs upon her return in Apr - May 1934 and then a refit from 25 Jul to 31 Aug 1934. Cygnet was detached from the Home Fleet during the Abyssinian Crisis, and deployed in the Red Sea from Sep 1935 to Apr 1936. She returned to the UK in Apr 1936 and refitted at Devonport between 20 Apr and 18 June 1936 before resuming duty with the Home Fleet. In Jul - Aug 1936 she was deployed for patrol duties off the Spanish coast in the Bay of Biscay to intercept shipping carrying contraband goods to Spain and to protect British-flagged shipping during the first stages of the Spanish Civil War. Together with her sister HMS Crescent, Cygnet was sold to Canada on 20 Oct 1936 for a total price of 400,000. She was refitted again to meet Canadian standards, including the installation of Type 124 ASDIC, and handed over on 01 Feb 1937. The ship was renamed as HMCS St. Laurent and commissioned into the Royal Canadian Navy on 17 Feb 1937. St. Laurent was assigned to Halifax, Nova Scotia and arrived there in May 1937. She remained there for a year before she was transferred to Esquimalt in 1938. In the summer of 1938, HMCS Skeena, HMCS Fraser, HMCS Saguenay and HMCS St. Laurent paid a port visit to San Diego as part of the spring training cruise. St Laurent was stationed on the west coast of Canada when World War II began and shortly thereafter she returned to the east coast, arriving at Halifax on 15 Sep 1939, and for several months escorted convoys on the first leg of the transatlantic journey. St. Laurent left Halifax for the U.K. on 24 May 1940, and on arrival at Plymouth on 31 May 1940, was assigned to Western Approaches Command, playing a brief role in the evacuation of France. On 02 Jul 1940, she rescued 860 survivors of the torpedoed liner Arandora Star. She returned to Halifax on March 3, 1941, for refit, on completion of which she joined Newfoundland Command as a mid-ocean escort, serving continuously for the following three years. In Apr 1943, she became a member of EG C-1. During this period "Sally" assisted in the destruction of two U-boats: U 356 on 27 Dec 1942, while escorting convoy ONS.154; and U 845 on 10 Mar 1944, while with convoy SC.154. In May 1944, she was transferred to EG 11 for invasion duties, remaining with the group on patrol and support duties until the end of Nov 1944, when she returned to Canada for major repairs at Shelburne, N.S. She afterward remained in Canadian waters as a member of Halifax Force and after VE-Day was employed in transporting troops from Newfoundland to Canada. Paid off on 10 Oct 1945, she was broken up at Sydney, NS, in 1947.


RCN Memories:     The sinking of U-845


Photos and Documents          Ship's company photos


Battle for Convoy BX-141          Battle for Convoy ONS-154          Interrogation of Survivors - U-845


Commanding Officers

LCdr Roger Edward Shelford Bidwell, RCN - 17 Feb 1937 - 07 Dec 1937

LCdr Adrian Mitchell Hope, RCN - 08 Dec 1937 - 05 Oct 1939

LCdr Henry George DeWolf, RCN - 06 Oct 1939 - 13 Jul 1940

Lt Herbert Sharples Rayner, DSC, RCN - 14 Jul 1940 - 18 Feb 1942

LCdr Edgar Lorne Armstrong, RCN - 19 Feb 1942 - 13 Nov 1942

LCdr Guy Stanley Windeyer, RCN - 14 Nov 1942 - 19 Jan 1943

Cdr Hugh Francis Pullen, RCN - 20 Jan 1943 - 12 Mar 1943

LCdr George Hay Stephen, DSC, RCNR - 13 Mar 1943 - 14 Apr 1944

LCdr Angus George Boulton, RCNVR - 14 Apr 1944 - 07 Nov 1944

Lt M.G. Stirling, RCN - 08 Nov 1944 - 07 Apr 1945

LCdr George Hay Stephen, DSC, OBE, RCNR - 08 Apr 1945 - 10 Oct 1945


     In memory of those who made the ultimate sacrifice    

     Lest We Forget     


- Book of Remembrance entry     - Grave or burial information

HUSON, Earl Frederick Davis

AB, V6337, RCNVR

died - 23 Nov 1940 

MOORE, Robert

Tel, D/JX 341846, RN

DOW - 30 Mar 1943

ROBERTS, Alexander Wark

AB, V22471, RCNVR

MPK - 01 Feb 1944 


     In memory of those who have crossed the bar    

They shall not be forgotten


Bak, Boley Hubert


Bartram, Vincent James


Bennett, George Martin


Served in St Laurent 01 May 1937 - 08 Jul 1938 as Sto 1c, RCNVR

Boileau, Joseph Phileas L.

MPK - 22 Oct 1940

while serving in

HMCS Margaree H49

Bond, Walter


Buchanan, John David


Byatt, Archie


Served in St Laurent in 1938-1939





Cairns, Elmer Crossley


Caldwell, Frank Birch


Served in St Laurent in 1940 as 1st Lt.

Clarke, John James Ashworth


Coates, John Jeffrey


Cox, Peter S.


Damon, Ronald Arthur


Davidson, John Cameron


DeWolf, Henry George


3rd Commanding Officer

Doughtery, Jerome Garfield

Served in St Laurent 24 Nov 1939 - -3 May 1940, 13 Jun 1941 - 17 Apr 1942 as an AB, A/LS, RCNVR

MPK - 23 Mar 1944

while serving in

HMCS Qu'Appelle H69

Drake, Bert


Drew, Malcolm


Dunbar, Hugh C.






Edwards, Ralph William


Ferris, Leonard Rowland


Fisher, C.Fred


Frewer, Frederick Charsley




Charlie Gilraine


Served in St Laurent during WW II

Gilraine, Francis Joseph


Served in St Laurent during WW II

Gill, Leslie Francis


Gordon, Hugh Warwick


Green, George Charles


Served in St Laurent in 1938 as Tel, RCNVR and 1940 as L/Tel, RCN

Grubb, Frederic Ernest


Drafted to St Laurent 21 Apr 1938 as Lt, RCN

Guest, Albert A.


Heycock, Selwyn Reese

MPK - 22 Oct 1940

while serving in

HMCS Margaree H49

Hicks, Clarence E.


Hope, Adrian Mitchell


2nd Commanding Officer

Hue, George Edward


Hunter, Hubert James


Hutton, Jack

Served in 21 Apr 1938 - 13 Jun 1938 as a Sig, RCN

killed - 20 Sep 1943

while serving in

HMCS St Croix I81

Huxley, George Ambrose




Knight, Roland Bradley


Served in St Laurent 08 Jan 1942 - 27 May 1942






Mann, Clement Cecil Wallace


Mills, Ernest George

MPK - 29 Apr 1944

while serving in

HMCS Athabaskan

Mogensen, Frank


Serve in St Laurent 10 Dec 1941 - 08 Jul 1942 as a A/LS & A/PO, RCN

Mosher, Thomas G.


New, Gerald Ashfield


Nixon, Charles Patrick


Served in St Laurent 1939-1942 as Slt, RCN, then Lt, RCN, XO






Parnell, George F.

Served in St Laurent 21 Apr 1938 - 07 Oct 1938 as a Sto 1c, RCN

killed - 20 Sep 1943

while serving in

HMCS St Croix I81

Parslow, Robert Frederick


Pattison, Ralph Reginald


Phillips, Raymond


Served in St. Laurent in 1941 as Slt, RCN

Porteous, William Walter


Served in St. Laurent in 1937 as Engineering Officer

Pramberg, Frank Carl


Served in St Laurent in 1942

Priske, Sydney Robert

Served in St Laurent 23 Nov 1939 - 22 Feb 1941 as an AB / LS, RCN

killed - 20 Sep 1943

while serving in

HMCS St Croix I81

Pullen, Hugh, Francis


7th Commanding Officer




Rayner, Herbert Sharples


4th Commanding Officer






Sandham, Ernie, Signalman


Stephen, George Hay


8th Commanding Officer

11th Commanding Officer

Thicke, Charles F.

Served in St Laurent 06 Jan 1942 - 08 Jul 1942 as a OS / AB, RCN

killed - 20 Sep 1943

while serving in

HMCS St Croix I81




Vaughan, Arnold







Wakeham, Gordon


Wardell, Robert Franklin


Watson, Horace William

Served in St Laurent 31 Jul 1937 - 20 Apr 1938 as an OS, RCN

killed - 20 Sep 1943

while serving in

HMCS St Croix I81

Welland, Robert Philip


Warner, Frank A.


Windeyer, Guy Stanley


6th Commanding Officer






Yeadon, Robert Lawrence

Killed - 29 Apr 1944

While serving in

HMCS Athabaskan

Young, Thomas William

MPK - 13 Sep 1942

While serving in

HMCS Ottawa





U-Boats Sunk

U-356 sunk on 27 Dec 1942 by HMCS St. Laurent H83, HMCS Chilliwack K131, HMCS Battleford K165, and HMCS Napanee K118 in position 45-30 N, 25-40 W

U-845 (Korvkpt Werner Weber) a type IXC-40 U-boat, sunk on 10 Mar 1944 by HMCS St. Laurent H83, HMCS Owen Sound K340, HMCS Swansea K328 and HMS Forester in the North Atlantic at position 48-20N 20-33W. Of her crew of 56 there were 45 survivors.


Former Crew Members

Adams, Kenneth (Ken) Frederick, LCdr, RCN - 17 Feb 1937


Angus, David, Lt (T), RCNVR - 01 Apr 1941


Arber, Sidney Roy, Surg/Lt, RCNVR - 02 Jun 1941


Atwell, Bill, ERA - 1942


Balfour, St. Clair, Lt, RCNVR - 10 Mar 1941


Bourne, John Desmond, Slt (E), RCNVR - 07 Mar 1945


Brainerd, Thomas Chalmers, LCdr, RCNVR - 17 Feb 1945


Brown, William Gould, LCdr (E), RCNVR - 08 Feb 1943


Bryant, James Allison, LCdr (T), RCNVR - 09 Mar 1945


Burgess, Basil Arthur Slt (E), RCNVR - 14 Apr 1944


Byers, Phillip Taber, Slt, RCNVR - 17 May 1941


Caldwell, Frank Birch, Lt, RCN - 18 Apr 1940


Carruthers, Harvey, Lt (E), RCNVR - 19 Feb 1945


Clarke, Alfred William, Wt (E), RCN - 06 Mar 1937


Davies, Lewis Thomas, Lt, RCNR - 10 Feb 1943

Edwards, Ralph, E.R.A. - 1942


Flemming, Eric Rayland, Paym/Lt, RCNR - 14 Apr 1944


Fraser, Hugh Wellington, Lt, RCNVR - 03 Jul 1942


Freeman, Arthur George, Gnr (T), RCN - 17 Feb 1937


Gibson, James William, Surg/Lt, RCNVR - 03 Jun 1943


Haddon, Philip Edwin, Lt, RCN - 17 Feb 1937


Hay, James MacMurry, Slt, RCNVR - 29 Jul 1942


Hodgkin, William Leonard, A/Gnr, RCN - Jan 1945


Inglis, Keith, ERA. - 1942


Jackson, Reginald (Cowboy), Lt, RCNVR - 12 Apr 1940


McDowell, Sammie, ERA - 1942


McKeever, Archibald, Lt, RCNVR - 23 Feb 1943


McMaster, Samuel, Lt (E), RCN - 21 Apr 1938


Meagher, Kevin Joseph, A/Paym, LCdr, RCNVR - Jan 1945


Mitchell, James Evelyn, A/Lt, RCNVR - 19 Feb 1940

Moore, John Brenton, Surg/Lt, RCNVR - Jan 1945


Piggott, Jean Jaques (Jock), Slt (E), RCNVR - 12 Apr 1941 / 21 Apr 1941 / Lt, E.O., RCNVR - Jan 1942


Porteous, William Walter, LCdr (E), RCN - 01 Feb 1937

 (Stand by) / 17 Feb 1937


Reid, Donald Thorburn, Lt, RCNVR - 01 Jun 1945


Robb, James Preston, Surg/Lt, RCNVR - 27 Jul 1942


Ross, Jack, E.R.A. - 1942


Scovil, Henry Evelyn Derrick, Lt, RCNVR - Jan 1945


Stirling, Michael Grote, Slt, RCN - 21 Apr 1938


Street, Lawrence


Swain, Robert Francis, Lt (E), RCNR - 01 Jun 1941


Telfer, Russel Bertrand, Lt, RCNVR - 07 May 1945


Turner, Anthony Aubrey, Lt, RCNVR - 01 Jul 1944


Webber, Reginal Amand, Lt, RCN - 17 Feb 1937


Welland, Robert (Bob) Phillip, Slt, RCN - 06 Mar 1940


Wilson, Dick, E.R.A. - 1942


Wilson, Thomas Victor, Surg/Lt, RCNVR - Jan 1944


Photos and Documents


HMCS Cygnet H83 (later HMCS St Laurent H83)

New Canadian Destroyer Docks at Montreal Pier

Newspaper article on the arrival of HMCS St. Laurent at Montreal in 1937

Courtesy of Terry Pinnell

HMCS St. Laurent H83

From the collection of Glendon Oliver

Courtesy of Keith Oliver

Crossing the Line - HMCS St Laurent circa 1938

From the collection of John James Ashworth Clarke

Courtesy of Eric Clarke

Gunnery and Torpedo Shoot - HMCS St Laurent circa 1938

From the collection of John James Ashworth Clarke

Courtesy of Eric Clarke

HMCS St Laurent H83, Esquimalt, 1939

From the collection of Jim Silvester

Courtesy of Jim Silvester

HMCS St Laurent H83, Halifax, 1941

Photo taken from HMCS Baddeck K147

From the collection of Kenneth Medford, DSM

Courtesy of Gary Medford

"Another depth charge - we didn't get this sub"

HMCS St. Laurent conducts an attack on a U-boat

Gun Crew HMCS St. Laurent H83

Walter Bond

Commissioning Crew, HMCS St. Laurent, 1937

HMCS St. Laurent H83 - 1943

Source: Government of Nova Scotia Virtual Archives - H.F. Pullen NSARM accession no. 1984-573 Box 1 F/18

HMCS St. Laurent postcard by Edward Goodall

Courtesy Dave Clark

Newspaper article on article on the loss of Able Seaman Earl Huson

 The Ottawa Journal, 04 Dec 1940

Frank Pramberg on HMCS St Laurent - 1942

From the collection of Frank Pramberg

Courtesy of Edna Wiebe

HMCS St Laurent H83 - 1944

From the collection of Frank Gilraine

Courtesy of George Gilraine

HMCS St Laurent Knocks Out Fire and Sub In One Blow

The Winnipeg Evening Tribune 06 Jun 1944

Crew of HMCS St Laurent H83 on the quarterdeck for a photo shoot - date unknown

From the collection of Hamilton Skilling

Courtesy of Chris Skilling

Thomas Mosher on HMCS St. Laurent, Callao, Peru - date unknown

From the collection of Thomas Mosher

Courtesy of Gordon Rhymes

HMCS St Laurent H83 - location unknown

From the collection Harry Swanson

Courtesy of Jason Belanger

Lewis Hue (right) and brother George Hue (2nd from right) on George's ship - HMCS St Laurent H83.  The CPO and other PO in the photo are not known

From the collection of Lewis Hue

Courtesy of David Hue

Postcard - HMCS St Laurent H83 in Alcapoco, Mexico

From the collection of Lewis Hue

Courtesy of David Hue