HMCS Gaspé

A ship on the water.

HMCS Gaspé J94.

There have been two vessels named Gaspé in the Royal Canadian Navy.

HMCS Gaspé (1st of the name) (J94)

Commissioned at Québec City, Québec, on 21 October 1938, Gaspé, a Fundy Class minesweeper, was at Halifax, Nova Scotia, when hostilities broke out. She was one of the thirteen ships in commission with which the Royal Canadian Navy entered the Second World War. The decision to build a new class of ships came from the fact that the only minesweepers available for the protection of Canadian ports approaches were three trawlers, veterans of the Great War of 1914-1918. Throughout the Second World War, Gaspé saw service with the Halifax Defence Force being employed daily in sweeping the harbour approaches and entrance. In addition, she was used occasionally for local escort duties or was required to carry out some minesweeping operations in the vicinity of such ports as Pictou and Liverpool, Nova Scotia. She was paid off at Halifax on 23 July 1945 and sold into mercantile service in 1946, becoming the Shanghai tug Sung Li.

A ship travelling on the water.

HMCS Gaspé 143.

HMCS Gaspé (2nd of the name) (143)

On leaving the Davie Shipbuilding & Repairing Co., Ltd. of Lauzon, Québec, the Bay Class minesweeper Gaspé was commissioned on 26 November 1953 and stationed in Halifax. As she was the first ship of her class, Gaspé spent most of the first year in service performing various trials and undergoing various modifications intended to improve her design. A certain amount of training was also carried out, and cruises made to ports in Newfoundland, the Maritimes and the United States. In March 1955, Gaspé participated in an American minesweeping exercise, which led them to visit the West Indies and several ports in the United States. On 3 July, Gaspé led her sister-ships Ungava, Trinity, and Resolute on a two-month training cruise for reserve personnel on the Great Lakes.

Badge of HMCS Gaspé.

Badge of HMCS Gaspé.

She went in for refit at Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, on 21 November, remaining there until March 1956. The summer of 1956 was spent participating in North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) exercises. On 24 January 1957, Gaspé took part in another United States Navy exercise off the Virgin Islands. Shortly after returning to Halifax, Gaspé went in for refit. While the refit was in progress orders were received that, though Gaspé was to be kept in commission, the ship’s company would be used to commission the new construction Bay Class minesweeper Chaleur. The ship was gradually immobilized, and following the completion of post-refit trials was paid off and placed in Her Majesty’s Canadian Dockyard Halifax on 22 August 1957. The following day she was towed to the Naval Armament Depot Jetty at Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, to await her transfer to the Turkish Navy, which renamed her Trabzon, on 31 March 1958.

Battle honours

  • Atlantic 1939-1945
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