HMCS Vancouver recognized for service during Operation Unified Protector

More than 190 women and men from HMCS Vancouver formed up in the Naden Drill Shed Nov. 16 to receive the Non-Article 5 NATO Medal for Service (Libya Medal).

The drill shed was filled with nervous excitement as the sailors, soldiers and air personnel – formed up in three large platoons – awaited their turn to receive the medal.

With the military band playing in the background, friends, family and distinguished guests watched as RAdm Bill Truelove, Commander of Maritime Forces Pacific and Joint Task Force Pacific; Cmdre Scott Bishop, Commander of Canadian Fleet Pacific; and Capt(N) Bob Auchterlonie, Base Commander of CFB Esquimalt; presented the medals.

“In 20 years when I look back at my Libya Medal, I will feel a huge sense of pride” said LS Stephanie Masciotra, “We worked hard while we sailed in pitch darkness, and were always at the ready at everything we did.”

The Libya Medal was awarded for Vancouver`s participation in Operation Mobile, the Canadian contribution to the NATO Operation Unified Protector. Vancouver was deployed to the Mediterranean region during Operation Mobile from July 10, 2011, to Feb. 19, 2012.

“I’m so absolutely proud of every single one of them, of the things that they accomplished, not only for themselves but for the navy and Canada,” said Cdr Bradley Peats, Commanding Officer of Venture, and Vancouver’s Commanding Officer during Operation Mobile.

Canada played a leading role in the UN-mandated operations with 630 CF members deployed to create a Libyan no-fly zone and prevent attacks on civilians by the government forces of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi.

Other Canadian assets with Operation Mobile included CF-188 Hornet fighters, CC-150 Polaris in-flight refuelling tankers, CC-130 Hercules tankers, CP-140 Aurora long-range patrol aircraft as well as Canada’s massive C-177 Globemaster III aircraft.

A/SLt MacDougall, BPAO Trainee

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