HMCS Winnipeg visits namesake

Winnipeg sailors in the Santa Claus parade with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers’ mascots.

Winnipeg sailors in the Santa Claus parade with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers’ mascots.

“Winnipeg? You’re going there in November?!” This was the phrase heard most often by 10 members of HMCS Winnipeg who were selected to attend the ship’s Namesake City visit to Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Surprisingly, the attendees enjoyed sunny weather with unseasonably warm temperatures in the high teens for most of the visit.

The sailors, led by Logistics Officer, Lt(N) Michelle Baranowski, and Coxswain, CPO1 Sylvain Jaquemot, had an action-packed five days in the Manitoba capital.

Highlights of the week included a visit to the Manitoba Legislative Assembly. There, the team met Speaker of the House, the Honourable Myrna Driedger. The team also met with Member of the Legislative Assembly Jon Reyes, who is Manitoba’s Special Envoy for Military Affairs. Reyes has a special connection to HMCS Winnipeg. He served on board as a Naval Combat Information Operator from 1994-1999.

Another visit was to Winnipeg City Hall, where Mayor, Brian Bowman presented the sailors with a beautiful framed painting of children playing pond hockey.

On Remembrance Day, Winnipeg’s ­sailors attended a ceremony at HMCS Chippawa, the Naval Reserve Division in Winnipeg. Some of Winnipeg’s sailors formed the Colour Party for the ceremony.

After the ceremony, the representatives from Winnipeg made their way to Deer Lodge Centre, a hospital specializing in the treatment of veterans. The sailors participated in their Remembrance Day ceremony as well and talked with a few of the veterans.

The week culminated with Winnipeg’s sailors taking part in the city’s famous Santa Claus parade.

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