Message from Sherry Pringle

Athabaskan Families–please note.

I am doing a revision of « All The Ship’s Men; HMCS Athabaskan’s Untold Stories ». I currently have ten new stories from veterans and family members for a new edition. If you have a loved one who was onboard GO7 when she sunk, and you wish to have their tales included, this is a golden opportunity. I can’t think another such occasion will arrive in our lifetime.

Please contact me if interested and I will get back to you.

Sherry Pringle Author


Pictures of HMCS Haida taken in 2011

Pictures of HMCS Haida taken in 2011

I visited the ship that saved Norris John Legh in 2011.

Little did I know back then that my interest in HMCS Haida would be rekindled in 2016 by someone who left a comment…

My father was one picked up by her sister ship, just wanted to thank you for all you are doing in the memory of those who served, my father’s name Norris John Legh.

Little did I know that Michael’s father was on that picture in the book page 141.

Haida with survivors

Norris John Legh 001-1

Norris John Legh

Little did I know that he was also in more pictures in the book.

Especially this one with the wrong caption identifying him as Stu Kettles…

Norris John Legh 003.jpg

Read the book!

Read  the book!

cover page 1

This  is  the  best  book  review  written about  Unlucky Lady – The  Life  & Death  of HMCS  Athabaskan.

It was  never  written  but told by Norris  John  Legh to his  son Michael.


Norris John Legh was aboard the Unlucky  Lady  on April  29th, 1944. He could  have  been  among  the 128  sailors  who never came  back.

He was lucky to survive.

Athabaskan sinking 1944

Roll along

Roll along

Tune :- Roll Along, Covered Wagons

Roll along, Wavy Navy, roll along
Roll along, Wavy Navy, roll along
If they ask us who we are
We’re the RNVR —
Roll along, Wavy Navy, roll along

Oh, we joined for the chance to go to sea
Yes, we joined for the chance to go to sea
But the first two years or more
We spent marching on the shore
Roll along, Wavy Navy, roll along

Oh, we joined for the payment and the fun
Yes, we joined for the payment and the fun
But of payment there is none
And the fun is yet to come
Roll along, Wavy Navy, roll along

Oh, we joined for the glory of it all
Yes, we joined for the glory of it all
But the good old RN
Made us change our minds again
Roll along, Wavy Navy, roll along

And when at last they sent us out to sea
Yes, when at last they sent us out to sea
There were several things we saw
That were not brought up before
Roll along, Wavy Navy, roll along

Man you gun, Seaman Gunner, man your gun
Man you gun, Seaman Gunner, man your gun
Load it up with shot and shell
And we’ll blow the Huns to hell
Roll along, Wavy Navy, roll along

Now before we pull up hook and sail away
Yes, before we pull up hook and sail away
If you want some good advice
Before you join, think once or twice
Roll along, Wavy Navy, roll along

Written in 2010… It’s about this blog

Written in 2010… It’s about this blog

I started writing this blog so I could find people who could have known people who knew my wife’s uncle.

This was my first article…

Click here.

Many people wrote me and shared information and pictures.

Every time I would ask permission to post them. I only share what people permit me to do.

If you have been reading this blog from the start, you know my wife’s uncle did not want to talk much about his ordeal. So I bought the book The Unlucky Lady written by Émile Beaudoin. In the book there is a list of sailors who took part in that fateful mission on April 29, 1944.

Pierre Bachant’s name is not in the book. I can’t find any trace of him in the book. But he has given me enough information to believe that what he said was true. One of these things was that he recognised Thin in this picture…

Thin is in the middle of picture between the two guns. He is all but thin.

Dorothy wrote me last week. She recognised another sailor. She said his name was Jack Edwards. He was from Edmonton, Alberta. Dorothy shared some information with me and even though I had a hard time figuring out who he was refering to in this picture, Dorothy and I had fun exchanging e-mails back and forth to find Jack.

Right, left, port, starboard… I was all confused. At least I knew who Thin was.

Jack is listed in the book under the name John. There is another Edwards in the crew. His name was Lloyd Edwards. He was from Ontario.

I believe it’s him…

Click to zoom in

What’s this blog all about…?

I think you know the answer.

By the way, are you related to Thin?

Is Lucien Riendeau on that picture?

Is Lucien Riendeau on that picture?

Lucien Riendeau was a sailor aboard HMCS Athabaskan on April 29, 1944. He was Taken on Strength on  March 29, 1944.

His training was on guns so he must have been stationed either with A/B or X/Y turrets.

X/Y turrets sailors circa 1943

Paul Riendeau has no picture of his uncle who served only one month aboard the Unlucky Lady. He is still wondering if this is his uncle Lucien.

Lucien Riendeau

Lucien  Riendeau (1923-1944)? 
circa early April 1944 aboard HMCS Athabaskan

early April 1944

Lucien Riendeau 1


His  nephew Paul  

Lucien and Paul?

The good-looking guy

The good-looking  guy

Lucien Riendeau

Lucien is not the good-looking guy of HMCS Athabaskan.

This sailor had this nickname…

good looking guy

The good-looking  guy

This picture is from Herm Sulkers’son collection. Paul Sulkers shared it in 2011 if I remember correctly. He had this one also with captions.

Every sailor from X-Y gun turrets were identified except the good-looking  guy.

Then his daughter found my blog in 2012 if I remember correctly and wrote a comment…

To be continued…

Ernest R Anderson

Ernest R. Anderson


Herm Sulkers and Jim L’Esperance

Final repost of the day.
This one is for you Ed.

Lest We Forget

Herm and Jim were often seen together in pictures I have about the HMCS Athabaskan.

I know a lot because I have been searching a lot since August 2009.

Herm and Jim were both made prisoners on April 29, 1944, and we see them on the ship that brought them back to Canada in 1945.

Jim is in the red rectangle. Herm is of the left just beside him.

I had this next picture in my file.

Jim L’Esperance’s son sent it back in 2009 or 2010.

Herm is on the extreme left and Jim is on the extreme right in the second row.

I never met any of these brave sailors personally, but I know what kind of men they were.

Paul Sulkers had the same picture but with captions. His father Herm Sulkers wrote them.

Jim’s son and Herm’s son are teaming up with their photos to pay…

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Interesting comment

Interesting comment

Four years ago I finally got close to finding the truth…
This post is for you Paul.

Lest We Forget

My dad should be on the lists of men that survived the sinking, but he is not. I have his original records but they are almost unlegible now. Does anyone know if records are still available?

Interesting reply on my part…

You could get his record files from Archives Canada, but they are not detailed records.
Can you scan what you have at 600 dpi or have someone help you to do it?
I could then try to find clues.
My wife’s uncle’s name was not also on the list, but he told us he survived the sinking and was picked up by HMCS Haida.

Two sailors with the Anderson name did served on that ship.
There is a list in the book Unlucky Lady of sailors who served prior to her last final patrol.

Able Seaman H. F. Anderson, number V-9893, from St. Vital, Manitoba.
Leading Seaman E. Anderson…

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