His Majesty's Ships - H.M.C.S. Iroquois
Motto: “Be Like the Eagles.”
One of four destroyers built on the Tyne by Messrs. Vickers-Armstrongs for the Royal Canadian Navy, the Iroquois belongs to the “Tribal” type, but with increased beam and other modifications to suit Dominion requirements. She was launched by Mrs. Vincent Massey, wife of the High Commissioner for Canada, on September 25, 1941, and completed in December 1942. Most of her subsequent service was in the North Atlantic and in European waters.
On the night of August 5-6, 1944, the Iroquois was one of four destroyers which, led by the cruiser Bellona, foiled a German attempt to evacuate a number of technical specialists from the Loire estuary. South-west of the port an enemy convoy of seven ships was sighted close inshore at a distance of 6,000 yards. The British squadron closed to within 1,000 yards, firing with such accuracy that all seven ships were destroyed. An hour later fire was opened on a second convoy, which escaped into St. Nazaire with considerable damage.
On August 15 the Admiralty reported that the Iroquois, in company with the cruiser Mauritius and the destroyer Ursa, had in the course of three engagements off the French coast between La Pallice and Sables d'Olonne set on fire and driven ashore several enemy ships. A week later a further announcement described how the same three ships had sunk an entire convoy between Brest and Lorient.
In February 1945 the Iroquois returned to her home port in Canada, but she was back on this side of the Atlantic in time to take part in the final phase of the war with Germany. On April 5 she was the largest of a division of four destroyers which attacked an enemy convoy of four supply ships and three escort vessels off the Norwegian coast, sinking one and damaging three.