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To be Captain of a ship was the goal

Heroes Remember

To be Captain of a ship was the goal

All I ever wanted to do, was to be the captain of a ship. That was the goal. And quite frankly, whatever has happened since then has been interesting, rewarding, enjoyable, usually fun, but doesn't hold a candle to the whatever it is, the sense of, of fulfilment, the sense of team, the sense of family that you really do have as captain, or member, actually. As an officer in a, in a crew, I always enjoyed that, too. I wouldn't, wouldn't have traded that. That was, that would always be the highlight of my time and my career was serving in ships. And, and the highlight of that, being captain of a ship, is just fantastic. My own personal life, if I had to pick, the happiest professional times, they would be as commanding officer of Chaleur and Miramichi II, smaller Bay Class minesweepers on the west coast, and my time in command of HMCS Iroquois on the, on the east coast, a Tribal Class destroyer. Different than being a squadron commander, different than commanding the navy, which I, I ultimately did, because you're part of a . . . it's a family. It's a, it's . . . you're in a world of 360 feet by 45 feet with 250 or 300 people, including helicopter and air crew, and it's very much a team/family thing, when you're in a happy ship. And happily for the Canadian Navy, for the most part, our ships are, are cohesive, are very professional. People take great pride in, in that. But when you’re in a, in a really good ship, with a, with a great ship's company, there's really . . . and challenging tasks. And it's, I guess I always . . . there's something very special about sailing out of a harbour, Halifax, let's say. And the horizon is there, and you do have some idea . . . it's not like you have total freedom. You know where you're going, but there is this sense at least of, of wondering what's over the next horizon and all of that. But it's a, it's a, it's just, it's a very special feeling. It's very much team.

Mr. Murray describes the pleasure he's felt as a ship's Captain.

Lawrence Edward Murray

Mr. Murray was born in Stratford, Ontario, on June 6, 1947. Strongly influenced by family and friends who had joined the Navy, he entered officer training at HMCS Carleton base in Ottawa. Following that, he began his progression through the rank echelon, starting on the west coast aboard the HMCS Fraser as the Navigation Officer. Once on the east coast, he joined the crew of HMCS Algonquin as her Combat Officer, then became Executive Officer or Second in Command aboard HMCS Athabascan. Mr. Murray then moved to HMCS Iroquois as her Commanding Officer. He then rose to the position of Squadron Commander, 1st Canadian Destroyer Squadron. During his service, the Canadian Navy was actively involved in both NATO / Cold War ( primarily surveillance of Soviet submarines ) and Fisheries Patrol activities. He also led a rescue mission off the Grand Banks, saving the entire crew of a disabled merchant ship during a hurricane. After leaving the Navy, Mr. Murray pursued a career in the Canadian Public service, and is currently the Deputy Minister of Fisheries and Oceans. He resides in Ottawa, Ontario.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Lawrence Edward Murray
War, Conflict or Mission:
Canadian Armed Forces
North Atlantic Ocean
NATO and Fisheries Patrol
HMCS Fraser
Squadron Commander
2nd Vice Admiral

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