On October 25, 2016, Senator Terry Mercer, Senator Daniel Lang and other parliamentarians joined with the Navy League of Canada in Parliament to mark Navy Day 2016, a day dedicated to recognizing the important role played by the Royal Canadian Navy and the Canadian Coast Guard in keeping Canada safe.
“When it comes to performance, Canada’s Navy and Coast Guard are second to none,” said Senator Mercer.
“They are giants amongst much larger nations in both performance and capability, with some of the most professional and well trained sailors in the world.”
From sinking German U-boats and protecting Atlantic trade during the Second World War to saving lives and protecting Canada’s sovereignty in the Arctic today, Canada’s Navy and Coast Guard have played — and continue to play — significant roles in Canada.
“Canada is a proud maritime nation,” said Senator Lang.
“Our history has been shaped by the seas and waterways, by the early sailors who came from Europe on tall ships, and those who explored our waterways in the canoe. Today’s celebration of Navy Day is in recognition of that spirit of exploration, adventure, leadership and courage — in service to Canada.”
The Speaker of the Senate, the Honourable George J. Furey, Q.C., along with senators Mercer and Lang, as well as the Commander of the Royal Canadian Navy, Vice-Admiral Ron Lloyd and the Commissioner of the Canadian Coast Guard, Jody Thomas participated in a ceremony in the Senate Chamber where 10 exceptional sailors from the Royal Canadian Navy and the Canadian Coast Guard were recognized for exceptional service to Canada.
“Navy Day is a unique opportunity for all Canadians from sea to sea to sea to recognize the dedication and commitment of all members of the Royal Canadian Navy and Canadian Coast Guard — from the Canadian Forces Station in St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador to the Maritime Forces Pacific in Victoria, British Columbia,” said Speaker Furey.
“It is also a great occasion to learn more about our navy and coast guard, and the personal stories of passion, determination and courage. It is indeed my honour to applaud the members of the Royal Canadian Navy and Canadian Coast Guard for their hard work and their unwavering service to our country," Speaker Furey continued.
The outstanding achievements of the following deserving soldiers were celebrated during the ceremony held in the Senate Chamber:
Master Seaman Brandon Bonnar, Atlantic region
Chief Petty Officer 2nd Class André Aubry, Central region
Lieutenant Émilie Béland, Central region
Master Seaman Matthew MacDonald, Atlantic region
Master Seaman Brett Poulin, Central region
Lieutenant Krisztina Rekeszki, Western region
Leading Seaman Corinne Simard, Central region
Raymond Cuza, Deckhand, Atlantic region
Nicholas Frith, Leading Seaman, Western region
Isabelle St-Denis, Shift Supervisor, Central & Atlantic regions