As usual I stumbled on something…

I saw a few minutes of  a TV program on History Channel.

It was about a corvette…

HMCS Regina

The HMCS REGINA (K 234), a Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) Corvette of the Flower Class, was launched on 14 October 1941 and commissioned on 22 January 1942.

She was one of 10 corvettes built to fulfill the RCN’s commitment to supply forces for the defence of Newfoundland and its adjacent waters. HMCS REGINA started her career in Halifax, but eventually she was chosen to travel to Britain as an escort for the Great Britain-Mediterranean runs.

While serving in the Mediterranean the HMCS REGINA sank the Italian submarine AVORIO on February 8, 1943. In March 1943 she returned to Halifax for a refit and in February 1944 she returned to England as part of the build-up for the planned invasion of Europe.

On August 8, 1944 the HMCS REGINA was serving as the sole escort for the convoy EBC-66 when disaster struck. One of the ships in the convoy, the US Liberty ship Ezra Weston, reported that she had hit a mine. REGINA pulled within hailing distance and advised the Ezra Weston to beach on the shore near Padstow, the nearest port. The Ezra Weston was unable to do so, as her engines had stopped. Another ship in the convoy, the HM LCT, was attempting to tow the Ezra Weston stern-first to shallower water when the HMCS REGINA was hit by a torpedo.

Because the depth charges on REGINA had been set to “safe,” many lives were saved. (Explosions of depth charges from sinking ships killed many sailors who survived the initial attack on their ships.) Still, 30 crew members were killed. 66 survivors from the REGINA and the 4 officers who had remained on the Ezra Weston were picked up by the LCT. It was later determined that the Ezra Weston had probably been struck by a torpedo, not a mine. (The REGINA would probably not have pulled near had this been known, but the captain of the Ezra Weston was working from negative evidence – no sighting of a U-boat or a torpedo track – and thus assumed erroneously that she struck a mine.)

By studying German records after the war ended, it was determined that U 667 sank the REGINA. (The U-boat struck a mine and went down with all hands just days after sinking the REGINA.)


I looked at list of the men who died on the ship.

This is the link.

I found one French-Canadian.

In memory of
Leading Stoker
who died on August 8, 1944

Military Service:

Service Number: V/4525
Age: 21
Force: Navy
Unit: Royal Canadian Naval Volunteer Reserve
Division: H.M.C.S. Regina

Additional Information:

Son of Alfred Denoncourt, and of Elodie Denoncourt, of Montreal, Province of Quebec.

10 thoughts on “As usual I stumbled on something…

  1. I believe (and I may be incorrect) AB Thomas Del La Hunt Malone is French -Canadian. He was born in Three Rivers, Quebec and his parents names on his headstone (Poundstock, Cornwall, UK seem to be French – Canadian?

      1. Thank you Pierre.
        AB Thomas Malone was also a hero who should have been recognized with a medal for his courageous and intelligent deeds that saved the lives of my father and his HMCS Regina K234 crewmates. The survivors know what he did for them.
        All the best and thank you for this excellent work.
        Sincerely, John

  2. My uncle was on the HMCS Regina. Freddy Simpson age : 18 his sister; last of his siblings is 94. We will remember him/them when we go by Cornwall in May 2012 on Princess. Thanks to you all who researched , and sought after articles and information to inform. Sincerely :his niece Patricia

    1. Hi William,
      We visited the graves of the 5 brave HMCS Regina K234 men in September 2011.
      This is something that I had wanted to do since growing up with a Regina survivor.
      You will not regret travelling to Cornwall. It is truly one of the most beautiful places I have ever been to (and I have travelled to many places in this world as I served 8 years in the Canadian Navy and 29 years in the Canadian Air Force).
      The two graves at St Merryn (near Padstow) were not difficult to find. However, the three graves at Pounstock were difficult to locate as the Churchyard was more remote and I had a problem finding these graves. Would be happy to assist and/or provide you information. Also, I regret not taking some tiny Canadian Desk flags to place on the graves. The ones on the graves in Pondstock were very worn and I do not recall seeing any on the two graves at Padstow (St Merryn). You may be able to get some from your local MP?
      Sincerley, John ( I have photographs of the graveyards and graves that I can try to send you.

  3. Fredrick Simpson was also from Montreal, Quebec-seeing these articles again…. thank you for Lest we remember…. his niece Patricia. and all our relatives.-I’m doing a family history …to let other family members (especially the younger ones) see these articles.

    1. I share whatever I find about these fine young men.
      You can use this blog to share what you know. Sometimes people link to other people who have more information.
      This is how this blog evolved since 2009 when I first wrote an article about my wife’s uncle.

  4. My grandfather was SLt L.G. Read (RNVR), commander of LCT644 (Landing Craft Tank MK6) who was ‘mentioned in dispatches’ for the rescue of many of the survivors of the Regina. I believe we still have his original report to the Admiralty regarding assistance given to the stricken Liberty Ship ‘Ezra Weston’ and the attack and sinking of the HMCS Regina including mention on the rescue and return of the survivors to shore.

    1. If you can scan this report, I can post it on the blog.
      You are also welcome to contribute to this blog by writing something about your grandfather.

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