HRM Mayor and city councillors pay namesake visit to HMCS Halifax
By Lt(N) John Morrow,
Weapons officer, HMCS Halifax
On Friday, January 11, HMCS Halifax had the pleasure of hosting His Worship Michael Savage, Mayor of Halifax and 12 city councillors for a visit, tour and lunch aboard the ship. The occasion was designed to welcome the elected leadership of Halifax, invite them to see life aboard an operational warship, and to strengthen ties between the city and her namesake ship. Sailors took councillors from their municipal districts on a tour of the ship making all the normal stops at the bridge, operations room, and machinery control room, but also taking time for impromptu breaks to speak to constituents along the way.
The City Hall officials brought with them the kind gift of a dozen street signs from the various districts of Halifax. The signs are intended to be hung in the passageways of the ship. The tradition of naming the flats of a ship after streets of their namesake city physically connects the unit with its city. Convening in the Wardroom for lunch, Commanding Officer, Cdr Scott Nelson presented Mayor Savage with a plaque to commemorate the event and to thank the city for their continuing support. “We are truly lucky to be homeported in our namesake city, which creates a special bond. Halifax is this city’s ship, her crew are your citizens, neighbours and volunteers, which makes our relationship stronger.”
Over the course of lunch numerous photos were taken with sailors and their councillors holding the street sign from their district. City Hall was well represented with councillors from 9 districts present: David Hendsbee – District 2, Bill Karsten – District 3, Lorelei Nicoll – District 4, Sam Austin – District 5, Tony Mancini – District 6, Lindell Smith – District 8, Shawn Cleary – District 9, Lisa Blackburn – District 14, Steve Craig – District 15 as well as the city’s Chief Administrative Officer, Jacques Dube.
The day’s visit was fruitful in strengthening the relationship between the city of Halifax and her namesake ship. As Halifax prepares to deploy on NATO operations later this summer, she is planning another event to cement her relationship with the city. Along with HMCS Scotian, HMCS Halifax intends to exercise Freedom of the City by parading through Halifax with drums beating, colours flying, and bayonets fixed during Memorial Cup week.