New CO to take HMCS Ville de Québec from refit to sea 

The May 10 Change of Command highlighted some recent shakeups in leadership across Canadian Fleet Atlantic, with Cdr Peter MacNeil (right) assuming command of HMCS Ville de Québec in a ceremony presided over by new Fleet Commander Capt (N) Mike Stefanson. Cdr MacNeil takes over from outgoing Ville de Québec CO Cdr Russel Hodgson.

New CO to take HMCS Ville de Québec from refit to sea 

By Nathan Stone,
Trident Staff 

HMCS Ville de Québec’s new CO will oversee the remainder of the refit period and eventual return to sea. The ship returned from extended maintenance with Irving Shipbuilding last summer.

The crew of His Majesty’s Canadian Ship (HMCS) Ville de Québec welcomed their new commanding officer at a ceremony set against the backdrop of the vessel’s ongoing refit work at His Majesty’s Canadian (HMC) Dockyard on May 10.   

Commander (Cdr) Peter MacNeil assumed command of the ship from Commander (Cdr) Russel Hodgson, who had served as the Commanding Officer of Ville de Québec for the last two years.  

Cdr MacNeil will oversee what refit work remains and the ship’s return to active service.  

In his farewell address, Cdr Hodgson spoke about the challenges of taking command of Ville de Québec while the Covid Pandemic restrictions were in place, and of the time spent working out of the shore office in 12 Wing Shearwater.  

He said that he had feelings of doubt on his first day, but added that the ship’s crew quickly brightened his outlook with their positive attitude and excellent work ethic. Hodgson said there was a welcoming atmosphere from the start. 

“It felt like home.” 

Cdr Hodgson said that he was proud of the crew and the progress they’ve made towards preparing the ship for service again.  

“It’s going to be one of the most handsome and capable ships ever put to sea.” 

Captain (Navy) (Capt (N)) Mike Stefanson, who was recently appointed the new Commander of Canadian Fleet Atlantic, presided over the ceremony. He expressed gratitude for the “impressive” work of Cdr Hodgson and his ship’s company.  

Speaking on the future of Ville de Québec, he said that refit will enhance its capabilities and put the ship, Cdr MacNeil and the crew at the forefront of Canada’s Atlantic fleet.  

“This ship is going to be set up with an amazing underwater warfare suite. It will be the pointy end of the spear for this fleet and you’re going to be at the front of it. We are incredibly excited to see what Ville de Québec achieves in the coming years.” 

The ship’s new CO, Cdr Macneil, thanked his family for their ongoing support and Cdr Hodgson for building “an epic team” aboard Ville de Québec 

Cdr Macneil said that he was excited, and compared the command appointment to being chosen as a “first round draft pick” in professional sports. 

Speaking to members of the ship’s company, Cdr MacNeil said he hopes to continue the strong culture of teamwork and persistence that Cdr Hodgson cultivated. 

“I want us to succeed together, that’s the only way to do it.”