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Her Majesty's Canadian Ship


HMCS Gatineau

DDE 236


International Ship Call Sign



Voice Call Sign


Navire Canadien de Sa Majesté


NCSM Gatineau

DDE 236


Indicatif d'appel international



Indicatif d'appel vocal



Laid down on 30 April 1953 at Davie Shipbuilding Ltd., Lauzon, Quebec

 Launched on 3 June 1957

Officially commissioned into the Royal Canadian Navy on 17 February 1959

Decommissioned from active service in the Canadian Forces on 24 May 1996

Departed Halifax Harbour for the last time on 17 November 2009

Arrived in Pictou, Nova Scotia on 19 November 2009

Dismantled and Broken Up at Pictou, Nova Scotia in 2010

I served onboard HMCS Gatineau from January 1967 until September 1968

Aecon Fabco wins $4.2M contract

By Ray Burns, Transcontinental Media

5 November 2009

[PICTOU, NS] — The end of two Canadian Navy destroyers could mark the beginning of some busy times at the Aecon Fabco shipyard in Pictou. The Dartmouth-based company won a tender to dismantle and dispose of HMCS Terra Nova and HMCS Gatineau which are currently tied up in Halifax Harbour. The company was awarded the tender for the removal/dismantling/disposal of the ships. It was awarded on October 22 with a bid of $4,258,529.78.


A recent story in The Chronicle Herald quoted a spokesman for Aecon Fabco as saying the dismantling work would likely take a year to complete for 60 to 70 workers. He said that asbestos in the ships would have to be dealt with first. Department of National Defence spokeswoman Nancy Cook said the ships are scheduled to be removed from Halifax in December.  “They are going to be disposed of through dismantling,” Cook said. “The company can then sell the pieces off. They are anticipating to have the full dismantling done by the fall of 2010.”


The 372-foot long ships were both built in the 1950s and served during the Cold War and were decommissioned in the late 1990s. The Department of National Defence called for bids on September 18, 2009, for the removal, dismantling and disposal of the ships. The deadline was October 8, 2009, and it was announced yesterday that the contract was awarded to Aecon Fabco. The DND said both ships will be towed to the Pictou shipyard.


About HMCS Gatineau…


HMCS Gatineau (DDE 236) was a Restigouche-class destroyer that served in the Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) and later the Canadian Forces from 1959-1996. She was the third ship in her class and the second vessel to carry the designation HMCS Gatineau. Gatineau was laid down on April 30, 1953, at Davie Shipbuilding Ltd., Lauzon, Quebec, and launched on June 3, 1957. She was officially commissioned into the RCN on 17 February 1959 and carried the pennant number 236 as a destroyer escort.

Fond memories of time aboard HMCS Gatineau

The Advocate - Pictou, Nova Scotia - December 9, 2009

John Cameron stands on Pier C in front of the HMCS Gatineau, a river class destroyer brought to Pictou to be scrapped.


Part of John Cameron’s life has come full circle with the arrival of the naval destroyer Gatineau in Pictou Harbour. It’s one of two destroyers arriving in Pictou after being retired to be scrapped at the local Aecon Fabco shipyard. The Pictou resident and retired member of the Canadian Navy was on board the ship when it was commissioned 50 years ago in Halifax.

“It was Feb. 17, 1959,” Cameron said. “We sailed out of Halifax Harbour with snow falling off the Angus L. Macdonald Bridge.” Cameron spent 20 years in the Navy after he joined on April 14, 1958.


“I’d just finished my basic training and went right to her,” he said. “It was great. We had a good crew.

"I was on the Gatineau for 16 months, until June 1961. After that, I just went from one ship to the other.

"In total, I had more than 1,000 days at sea. I’d do it all again if I could.”

One of Cameron’s excursions aboard the Gatineau took him to Quebec later in 1959 as part of the official opening of the St. Lawrence Seaway. During his time at sea, Cameron was on ships all the way to the head of Lake Superior, as far east as Cyprus, as far north as Narvik, at the head of a giant fiord in northern Norway, and as far south as Montevideo, Uruguay.  He was on the former aircraft carrier Bonaventure when it took the first Canadian army contingents to Cyprus.

Cameron said he’ll miss the Gatineau, considered ultramodern in terms of design and technology when it was built.

“It was the most sophisticated warship at sea at that time,” Cameron said. “No ship had rounded hulls or enclosed anchors or anything like that.

“It’s great to see her again, but it makes you feel bad they’re going to scrap her. But that’s life.”

Sad to see the end of HMCS Gatineau

The Advocate - Pictou, Nova Scotia - January 12, 2010


To the editor:

It is with sadness that I learned the fate of former Canadian destroyers HMCS Gatineau and HMCS Terra Nova. Both ships have been towed to Pictou, Nova Scotia, where they will be broken up.

I served on the Gatineau in 1967/1968 and had the pleasure to make a port visit to Pictou during Canada’s centennial year. I never thought at the time that Gatineau would be returning to Pictou on its final voyage to oblivion.

I have fond memories of the port visit to Pictou in 1967. Gatineau’s ship’s company was received with open arms and we made many friends during the visit.

Gatineau also made port visits to Port Hawkesbury and Sydney before heading for Montreal where the ship was open to the public during the last month of Expo 67.

Farewell Gatineau! You will live forever in my memories.

Donald Courcy
Halifax, Nova Scotia

Photos of Dying Ship HMCS Gatineau

Pictou, Nova Scotia - 2010

I cried when I saw this photo

The Following Photos Were Received from Jim Brannen

on October 23, 2010

HMCS Gatineau has been broken apart at Pictou, Nova Scotia.

The following photos show what is left of the proud ship.

As Jim said in his message: " A sad sight "

It is hard to believe that this is what is left of HMCS Gatineau



This is the way I want to remember my old ship HMCS Gatineau