Legion Foundation sets sail with Wolf

day sail in PCT Wolf

Sebastian Preston, 10, (left) and Owen Sparshu, 10, hold on tight during Wolf’s high speed manoeuvres.

In the deep, cold waters off the coast of Victoria a handful of lucky community members got a chance to hit the high seas in Orca-class Patrol Craft Training (PCT) vessel Wolf (PCT 59).

The 16 passengers were on a short voyage as part of a Legion Foundation auction, having bid on and won tickets to sail during the organization’s Christmas fundraising dinner.

“I thought it was such an interesting and educational opportunity I couldn’t resist,” says Bridget Preston, who won her ticket along with passage for three others with a bid of $400. “I’ve never had the opportunity to sail on a naval vessel, and I’ve lived in Victoria for so long I had to see it from this side.”

“Day sailors” were treated to a sunny and relaxing ride on the waters near Dallas Road, Clover Point, and Discovery Island.

They were also shown the speed and manoeuvrability of Wolf during some exercises.

“I was surprised as how quick they are,” says Preston. “You wouldn’t think a vessel so large could go so fast and turn so quickly. It was a real joy to witness.”

Preston was accompanied by her son Sebastian, 10, and his friend Owen Sparshu, 10. The two got out of school to get a peak at naval life.

“It was super fun, I’ve never done anything like this before,” says Sebastian. “We got out of school, which is cool, and we got to see so much cool stuff on the ship. Now we want to join the cadets.”

Lt(N) Les Gunderson, Officer in Charge of Wolf for the day sail, says such events are a great opportunity to show the community the other side of the navy.

“It’s important we show people what it is we do,” he says. “They hear about the navy in the news, or see them sailing in the Strait, but not many actually see what it’s like. We love having the chance to give them a taste.”

-Shawn O’Hara, Staff Writer

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