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Canadian Virtual War Memorial

Gregory Joseph Clancy

In memory of:

Telegraphist Gregory Joseph Clancy

April 16, 1945

Military Service


Service Number:

V/74066

Age:

20

Force:

Navy

Unit:

Royal Canadian Naval Volunteer Reserve

Division:

H.M.C.S. Esquimalt

Additional Information


Son of Daniel J. and Mary E. Clancy. of Toronto, Ontario.

Commemorated on Page 503 of the Second World War Book of Remembrance. Request a copy of this page.

Burial Information


Cemetery:

HALIFAX MEMORIAL
Nova Scotia, Canada

Grave Reference:

Panel 13.

Location:

The HALIFAX MEMORIAL in Nova Scotia's capital, erected in Point Pleasant Park, is one of the few tangible reminders of the men who died at sea. Twenty-four ships were lost by the Royal Canadian Navy in the Second World War and nearly 2,000 members of the RCN lost their lives. This Memorial was erected by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission and was unveiled in November 1967 with naval ceremony by H.P. MacKeen, Lieutenant-Governor of Nova Scotia, in the presence of R. Teillet, then Minister of Veterans Affairs. The monument is a great granite Cross of Sacrifice over 12 metres high, clearly visible to all ships approaching Halifax. The cross is mounted on a large podium bearing 23 bronze panels upon which are inscribed the names of over 3,000 Canadian men and women who were buried at sea. The dedicatory inscription, in French and English, reads as follows:

1914-1939
1918-1945
IN THE HONOUR OF
THE MEN AND WOMEN
OF THE NAVY
ARMY AND MERCHANT NAVY
OF CANADA
WHOSE NAMES
ARE INSCRIBED HERE
THEIR GRAVES ARE UNKNOWN
BUT THEIR MEMORY
SHALL ENDURE.

On June 19, 2003, the Government of Canada designated September 3rd of each year as a day to acknowledge the contribution of Merchant Navy Veterans.

Information courtesy of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

Digital Collection

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  • Newspaper clipping– From the Toronto Star May 1945. Submitted for the project Operation Picture Me
  • Newspaper Clipping– The Toronto Star May 9, page 31
  • HMCS Esquimalt– Minesweeper HMCS ESQUIMALT was operating with its sister ship HMCS SARNIA just off the east coast of Nova Scotia near Halifax when, at 6:20 in the morning of 16 April 1945, it was struck by a torpedo from a German submarine and sank so quickly it could not send out a distress call.  Her seaboat was smashed and two of her six carley floats were useless, so those who could scramble from the fast-sinking vessel crowded into the four remaining floats.  Many died in the first two hours while comrades watched helplessly.  All were close to death.  On one float, five of six men survived but on another only 12 out of 20 were alive when rescue came.  It took seven hours until HMCS SARNIA arrived on the scene.  As men died, their bodies were slipped overboard so that survivors in the water could get aboard the float.  The torpedo, designed to inflict severe damage on larger vessels, destroyed the small mine sweeper
A Halifax despatch said this was the second time within a few months that daring German raiders made their way through navy patrols to come practically within gunshot range of the port.  In May, after the war with Germany had ended, a despatch said patrols would continue as an untold number of U-boats still were lurking in the North Atlantic and their fanatical commanders could strike one last blow before their fuel and food ran out.  The commanding officer of U-190 surrendered to corvettes HMCS THORLOCK and VICTORIAVILLE on the 12th.
[From the page dedicated to the memory of AS Donald White in the book Gananoque Remembers authored by Bill Beswetherick and Geraldine Chase.]

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