Onboard HMCS Winnipeg for Family Day

HMCS Winnipeg Family Day

Master Sailor Thomas Eustace and his brother-in-law David. Photos: SLt Murdock-Finegold.

SLt Lyann Murdock-Finegold, HMCS Winnipeg — On Feb. 16, HMCS Winnipeg was honoured to welcome over 100 guests, family and friends onboard for Family Day to experience a day in our life at sea.

The faces with the big round eyes of little ones and their keen interest made the day for Sub-Lieutenant (SLt) Benjamin Miller, the face behind the Voice of Winnipeg, which comes across the public address system. The Voice of Winnipeg provided information about the day’s schedule and ‘salty dits’ about the ship and naval traditions to the guests throughout the day.

From the Navigation and Seamanship Brief for the Exit and Entrance of Esquimalt Harbour to securing specials and closing up the watch, guests could glimpse the hard work and dedication of the crew. Lieutenant-Commander James Ahlstrom, Executive Officer of HMCS Winnipeg, expressed how gratifying it was to see family and friends onboard and appreciated the ability to show our guests what we do at sea.

With lots of experience from OP Projection ’22, the crew conducted tours spanning the entirety of the ship. Our Naval Boarding Party and Ship’s Dive Team fought to be the favoured station and were, more importantly, available to take photographs with aspiring members. Unfortunately, for both teams, the excitement of the Bridge was voted best station. The Captain’s and Executive Officer’s chairs were particularly popular with younger guests, a couple of which were daring enough to sit and imagine what it would be like to command a warship.

Master Sailor (MS) Tom Eustace, a Senior Engineering Watch Keeper, brought his brother-in-law David for the day sail. David found the entire experience educational, and MS Eustace enjoyed getting the family to see what he does at sea. David relayed how proud he is of his brother-in-law’s accomplishments, thanking the crew of HMCS Winnipeg for their service and for welcoming him onboard.

Interrupted by 1000 stand easy, guests were introduced to the most sacred of naval traditions: soup, that day – a variation of chicken noodle, a hearty staple. Duff was plentiful, and the cookies were a big hit amongst the guests, who mingled with the crew in each mess.

Afterward – a demonstration of how the ship would rescue a person overboard was given. Sailor Third Class Matthew Shapiera’s uncle found the experience awesome and expressed his appreciation for the work HMCS Winnipeg does.

Although the day was short, the crew of HMCS Winnipeg and their family and friends were happy to exchange stories and experience a day at sea. Commander Annick Fortin, Captain of HMCS Winnipeg, would like to thank all of the family and friends of HMCS Winnipeg for their never-ending support, which enables the Winnipeg to sail and support the Royal Canadian Navy.

HMCS Winnipeg Family Day

On the starboard bridge wing observing the demonstration of the person overboard recovery.

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