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Battle of the Atlantic - May 5, 2024

May 5th 2024
The Battle of the Atlantic Ceremony - May 5, 2024
at 0930 on Sunday, May 5, 2024 in Waterfront Park in North Vancouver
The Battle of the Atlantic (BoA) Ceremony is a very important event to remember the sacrifices of Royal Canadian Navy and Merchant Marine sailors as well as the Royal Canadian Air Force personnel taking convoys across the Atlantic Ocean in World War 2. 

These personnel spent 6 years fighting in the longest running battle of the war. 
You can afford to attend a Ceremony in their honour.

Attendance is Mandatory and you must Register using this link ( or the button at the bottom of the email so we have approximate numbers.

This Ceremony is being organized by the Naval Veterans Association of HMCS Discovery so we don't have complete control of Events and timings but Navy League Officers from our and other Navy League Corps will be watching over the Cadets until they are picked up by their Parents. 

Please Drop Off your Cadet by 0930 hours (9:30 AM) on Sunday, May 5, 2024 at the McDonalds at 157 Chadwick Ct, North Vancouver, BC
They will Sign In here.

Pay parking is available in the area if Parents wish to watch the event.

Cadets are not to bring any snacks or water to the Ceremony as they are marching in and standing in a Parade. 

Please make sure the Cadets use the Heads (bathroom) before leaving their house or arriving.

Cadets will be wearing their full Service Dress Uniform (No.1).

The Service Dress Uniform consists of the following items (all items to be worn):
  • MJ Miller White Top (should be clean and white)
  • MJ Miller Dress Shirt (should be clean and ironed properly with all appropriate epaulettes and badges affixed)
    Do not wear your RPO, Gunner, or DPO brassards
  • Lanyard (if applicable)
  • MJ Miller Dress trousers (should be clean and ironed properly)
  • White Belt with Brass Buckle
  • MJ Miller Boots (clean and well-polished) or black dress shoe, if available, or black running shoes if you do not have boots or dress shoes
  • MJ Miller Pea Coat buttoned up with collars down
It is supposed to rain this day so if Cadets are still cold wearing all of the above, then they may wear their NLCC MJ Miller T Shirt underneath their NLCC MJ Miller Dress Shirt.
  • Their hair should be off their collar.
    If this is not the case, the Cadet will need to put their hair up in a bun.
    No ponytails!!
    This includes both female and male cadets.

If the Cadet has not yet been assigned a Dress Uniform or are missing important pieces of it, please wear a white shirt with collar, a black tie, black or dark blue dress trousers, black dress shoes, and a black or dark blue jacket. 

Cadet Pickup is at the same McDonalds location at approximately 1115 to 1130 hours (11:15 to 11:30 AM),

Cadets must Sign Out before they leave!!

After the Ceremony, Cadets are allowed and encouraged, after Signing Out, to visit the Navy ships docked at Burrard Street Pier in their Uniform. 

Cadets and Parents are reminded that their Dress and Deportment (behavior) reflect on the whole Corps and on future interactions with Royal Canadian Navy personnel and ships. 

The Battle of the Atlantic History

The Battle of the Atlantic began west of Ireland on September 3, 1939, with the sinking of the SS Athenia by a German submarine. The Montréal-bound passenger ship had 1,400 passengers and crew members on board; 118 were killed (including four Canadians). The Battle of the Atlantic lasted over 5 years and 8 months from September 3, 1939 to May 8, 1945.

German submarines (known as U-boats) were the main threat to the merchant marine and the Allied navies. U-boats were often away from their home port for three months or longer, and they carried torpedoes and also laid mines. Their impact on shipping was devastating. In June 1941 alone, more than 500,000 tons of cargo was lost to U-boats.

The first trans-Atlantic convoy of the war sailed from Halifax to the United Kingdom on September 16, 1939, escorted by British cruisers and two Canadian destroyers, HMCS St. Laurent and HMCS Saguenay.

A typical convoy of 40 ships might have been 10 columns wide with four ships in each column. It would have been headed by a flagship carrying the convoy Commodore and, ideally, escorted by warships patrolling its outer flanks. Ammunition ships and tankers, with their highly volatile fuel, were on the inside.

While the convoy routes of the North Atlantic and the Murmansk Run to northern Russia lost the most ships and crews, there were no safe havens anywhere at sea for merchant navies, whether in the coastal waters of North America, the North or South Atlantic, the Mediterranean, the Caribbean, the Indian Ocean, or the Pacific.

The Royal Canadian Navy began the war with 13 vessels and 3,500 sailors and ended it as the third largest Allied navy with 373 ships and more than 110,000 sailors (all volunteers), which included the 6,500 women serving in the Women’s Royal Canadian Naval Services. Aircraft from the Royal Canadian Air Force Eastern Air Command, Royal Canadian Air Force crews in the Royal Air Force Coastal Command, and ships from the Royal Canadian Navy helped sink 50 U-boats.

The merchant marine suffered tremendous losses in ships and crews. By the end of the war, as many as 72 Canadian merchant ships would be lost to enemy action—torpedoed, bombed, mined, or shelled. Storms at sea, operational accidents and structural shortcomings also took their toll. The Merchant Navy Book of Remembrance lists the names of the approximately 1,600 Canadian merchant mariners who died at sea during the war, including eight women.

Some 2,000 sailors of the Royal Canadian Navy were killed during the war, most of them in the Battle of the Atlantic zone.

Another 752 aircrew members of the Royal Canadian Air Force also died in this theatre of operations.

The Battle of the Atlantic lasted the duration of the Second World War in Europe, which officially ended on May 8, 1945 (known as V-E Day). 

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