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HMCS ASSINIBOINE, December, 1940 - River Class Destroyer

The Story of HMCS ASSINIBOINE, 1942-1946

Completed in 1932 as HMS Kempenfelt, she was transferred to the RCN at Devonport on October 19, 1939, and arrived in Halifax on November 17. Assigned to the America and West Indies Station, she left for Jamaica on December 5 to carry out Caribbean patrols. While so employed Assiniboine assisted in the capture of the German freighter Hannover in the Mona Passage and towed her into Kingston, Jamaica. She returned to Halifax on March 31, 1940, and was employed there as a local escort until January 15, 1941, when she sailed for the U.K. to join EG 10, Greenock. With the formation of Newfoundland Command in June, 1941, "Bones" was allocated to it for mid-ocean escort service. While thus employed with convoy SC.94, on August 6, 1942, she rammed and sank U 210, necessitating repairs at Halifax from August 29 to December 20. Not long after her return to service, while on passage to Londonderry on March 2, 1943, she attacked a U-boat with depth charges set too shallow, causing serious damage to her stern. Repairs were effected at Liverpool from March 7 to July 13, 1943, when she joined EG C-1 of MOEF. In April, 1944, she returned to Canada for refit at Shelburne, N.S., and on August 1 arrived at Londonderry to become a member of EG 12 and, a few weeks later, EG 11. In December she was loaned to EG 14, Liverpool, and remained with it until VE-Day. She returned to Canada in June, 1945, and, after brief employment as a troop transport, was paid off August 8, 1945. On November 10, 1945, en route for scrapping at Baltimore, Assiniboitie broke her tow and was wrecked near East Point, P.E.I. Her remains were broken up in situ in 1952.



Assiniboine was the first ship delivered postwar to the RCN by Marine Industries Ltd., Sorel. She was commissioned on August 16, 1956, and recommissioned on June 28, 1963, following the year's work required for conversion to a destroyer helicopter carrier (DDH). She completed her Destroyer Life Extension (DELEX) programme at Canadian Vickers Ltd., Montreal, in November, 1979. The ship, a member of the 1st Canadian Destroyer Squadron, was based at Halifax when she was retired.

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