HMCS Huron (G24)

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For other ships of the same name, see HMCS Huron.
HMCS Huron
Career (Canada)
Name: Huron
Namesake: Huron people
Ordered: 5 April 1940
Builder: Vickers-Armstrongs, Newcastle upon Tyne
Laid down: 15 July 1941
Launched: 25 June 1942
Commissioned: 28 July 1943
Decommissioned: 9 March 1946
Identification: pennant number: G24
Recommissioned: 1950
Decommissioned: 30 April 1963
Identification: pennant number: 216
Motto: Ready the brave
Honours and
awards:
Arctic, 1943-1945
English Channel, 1944
Normandy, 1944
Korea, 1951-1953[1]
Fate: Scrapped, La Spezia, 1965
Notes: Colours: Gold and crimson
Badge: Or nicotine bloom Gules seed pod Vert and stamens Or.[2]
General characteristics
Class & type: Tribal-class destroyer
Displacement: 1,927 long tons (1,958 t) standard
2,559 long tons (2,600 t) full load
Length: 114.9 m (377 ft 0 in)
Beam: 11.13 m (36 ft 6 in)
Draught: 3.96 m (13 ft 0 in)
Propulsion: 2 shaft Parsons geared steam turbines, 3 Admiralty boilers, 44,000 hp (32,811 kW)
Speed: 36.25 knots (41.72 mph; 67.14 km/h)
Range: 5,700 nmi (10,600 km) at 17 kn (20 mph; 31 km/h)
Complement: 240
Armament: 6 × 4.7 in (120 mm) guns (3×2)
2 × 4 in (100 mm) guns (1×2)
4 × 2-pounder QF (4×1)
4 × 40 mm Bofors
4 × 20 mm
4 × 21 in (533 mm) torpedo tubes (1×4)

HMCS Huron was a Tribal-class destroyer that served in the Royal Canadian Navy in the Second World War and the Korean War. She was the first ship to bear this name. She was named for the Huron people.

Huron was ordered on 5 April 1940 as part of the 1940 shipbuilding programme.[3] However due to the increased workload on British shipyards due to losses on the continent, her keel-laying was delayed.[4] She was laid down on 15 July 1941 by Vickers-Armstrongs on the River Tyne in England and launched 25 June 1942.[3] She was commissioned into the Royal Canadian Navy on 19 July 1943 at Newcastle upon Tyne.[5] She was completed on 28 July.[4]

Service history[edit]

The Second World War[edit]

After commissioning, Huron was assigned to the 3rd Destroyer Flotilla of the British Home Fleet. In October she carried special supplies and personnel to Murmansk.[5] On her return to Scapa Flow she was damaged in a collision with an oiler and spent a month in repair at Leith.[4] After her return from the dockyard she then spent the rest of the year escorting convoys bound for the Soviet Union.[5]

Huron continued to escort convoys bound for the Arctic until February 1944 when she transferred to the 10th Destroyer Flotilla to take part in the lead up to the Invasion of Normandy. She spent the next three months preparing for the invasion and was present on D-Day.[5] On the 25 April 1944, she, along with several other destroyers, encountered three German torpedo boats. The result of the engagement saw the Canadian destroyers sink T-29 and severely damage the others.[6] On 9 June 1944, as part of a destroyer flotilla tasked with protecting the approaches to the landing site, Huron intercepted a force of German destroyers heading for the invasion fleet in what became known as the Battle of Ushant. After a fierce gun battle she assisted HMCS Haida in running Z32 aground and pummeling the wreck.[7] Later that month on the 27 and 28 June 1944, she sank a heavily armed minesweeper and several patrol boats.[6]

In August 1944, Huron returned to Canada to undergo a refit at Halifax. She returned to UK waters in November carrying out escort duties in the Western Approaches. In March 1945, she was transferred to the Home Fleet for screening duties. In April, she escorted one further convoy to the Soviet Union.[4] In May 1945 she returned to Canada. She began a tropicalization refit to prepare her for possible service in the southern Pacific Ocean, however this was cancelled due to the surrender of Japan.[5] Following the end of the war, she was paid off into reserve on 9 March 1946.[5][4]

Postwar service[edit]

In 1950, Huron was recommissioned with the new pennant number 216[3] for training purposes, but with the onset of the Korean War she was sent overseas. She sailed for her first tour in Korean waters on 22 January 1951.[5] She arrived in theatre on 15 March 1951 and remained on station until 14 August later that year. Her duties included screening the aircraft carriers against possible submarine attack, shore bombardment and enforcing the United Nations (UN) blockade. While performing the latter duty, she intercepted and captured a large Communist junk and brought it into port, the first UN ship to do so.[8]

Upon her return to Canada, Huron had a major refit, completing in 1953.[4] Her second tour of duty as a member of the Commonwealth Task Force lasted from 18 June 1953 until 5 February 1954. The latter part of that tour was spent during the Armistice period. Her third tour from the 1 October to 26 December 1954 was spent with the United Nations fleet monitoring Korean waters.[4]

Following her Korean tours she reverted to her training role, taking part in North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) activities until she was paid off into reserve at Halifax on 20 April 1963 and scrapped at La Spezia, Italy in August 1965.[5][4]

Legacy[edit]

Huron '​s X turret, Royal Military College of Canada

The 4-inch (102 mm) twin high-angle Mk XIX naval gun turret was removed from Huron was presented to the Royal Military College of Canada in Kingston, Ontario.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "Battle Honours". Britain's Navy. Retrieved 8 June 2014. 
  2. ^ "Volume 2, Part 1: Extant Commissioned Ships". National Defence and the Canadian Forces. 2006. Retrieved 12 June 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c "HMCS Huron (G24)". uboat.net. Retrieved 8 June 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h Mason, Geoffrey B. (2001). "HMCS Huron, destroyer". naval-history.net. Retrieved 8 June 2014. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h Macpherson, Ken; Barrie, Ron (2002). The Ships of Canada's Naval Forces, 1910-2002 (3 ed.). St. Catharines: Vanwell Publishing Limited. p. 61. ISBN 1551250721. 
  6. ^ a b Gimblett, Richard H. (2009). The Naval Service of Canada, 1910-2010: The Centennial Story. Dundurn. pp. 68, 75. ISBN 1554884705. 
  7. ^ Zuehlke, Marc (2006). Holding Juno: Canada's Heroic Defence of the D-Day Beaches: June 7-12, 1944. Douglas & Mcintyre. pp. 218–225. ISBN 1553651944. 
  8. ^ Thorgrimsson, Thor; Russell, E.C. (1965). Canadian Naval Operations in Korean Waters, 1950-1955. Ottawa: Department of National Defence. pp. 49–60. 

References[edit]

  • Brice, Martin H. (1971). The Tribals. London: Ian Allan. ISBN 0-7110-0245-2. 
  • English, John (2001). Afridi to Nizam: British Fleet Destroyers 1937–43. Gravesend, Kent: World Ship Society. ISBN 0-905617-95-0.