John Wilfred Beattie, WW II Veteran, RCN Able Seaman

John Wilfred Beattie, WW II Veteran, RCN Able Seaman

Male 1921 - 1978  (56 years)

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  • Name John Wilfred Beattie 
    Suffix WW II Veteran, RCN Able Seaman 
    Born 28 Dec 1921 
    Gender Male 
    Died 27 Aug 1978 
    Buried Colborne Cemetery, Goderich, Huron, Ontario, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I2167  Default
    Last Modified 28 Dec 2019 

    Father John Ramsay Beattie,   b. 3 Nov 1881,   d. 9 May1963  (Age 81 years) 
    Mother Florence MacDonald,   b. 5 May 1890, Goderich, Huron, Ontario, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 6 Aug 1957  (Age 67 years) 
    Married Abt 1911 
    Family ID F728  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Lois Wendy Stewart Campbell,   b. 1932,   d. 2004  (Age 72 years) 
    Married not 
    Type: life partner 
    Last Modified 22 Jan 2018 
    Family ID F963  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBuried - - Colborne Cemetery, Goderich, Huron, Ontario, Canada Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 
    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Photos
    John Wilfred Beattie served on a Canadian minesweeper H.M.C.S. Cowichan J146 during WW II. He landed in Normandy on June 6, 1944
    John Wilfred Beattie served on a Canadian minesweeper H.M.C.S. Cowichan J146 during WW II. He landed in Normandy on June 6, 1944
    John Wilfred Beattie, Royal Canadian Navy, WW II veteran.
    John Wilfred Beattie, Royal Canadian Navy, WW II veteran.
    landed in Normandy June 1944.
    John Wilfred Beattie, Royal Canadian Navy, WW II veteran
    John Wilfred Beattie, Royal Canadian Navy, WW II veteran
    John Wilfred Beattie, Royal Canadian Navy, WW II veteran
    John Wilfred Beattie, Royal Canadian Navy, WW II veteran
    John Wilfred Beattie, Royal Canadian Navy, WW II veteran.
    John Wilfred Beattie, Royal Canadian Navy, WW II veteran.
    John Wilfred Beattie, Royal Canadian Navy, WW II veteran.
    John Wilfred Beattie, Royal Canadian Navy, WW II veteran.
    1939-1945 Star
    1939-1945 Star
    The Star was awarded for six months service on active operations for Army and Navy, and two months for active air-crew between 02 September 1939 and 08 May 1945 (Europe) or 02 September 1945 (Pacific). Battle of Britain: This bar was awarded to those members of the crews of fighter aircraft who took part in the Battle of Britain between 10 July and 31 October 1940. The ribbon consists of three equal stripes: dark blue, red, and light blue (representing the navy, army and air force).
    Atlantic Star
    Atlantic Star
    awarded for marine naval service overseas during WW II. The Star was awarded for six months (180 days) service afloat or 2 months (60 days) for air-crew service between 03 September 1939 and 08 May 1945 (Europe) or 02 September 1945 (Pacific). The Atlantic Star may not be awarded unless the 1939-1945 Star has been qualified for by 180 days' operational service afloat or by 2 months (60 days) service for airborne service. Therefore, the total requirement is twelve months (360 days) service afloat or four months (120 days) for airborne service.
    France and Germany Star
    France and Germany Star
    awarded for military service overseas during WW II. The Star was awarded for one day or more of service in France, Belgium, Holland or Germany between 06 June 1944 (D-Day) and 08 May 1945.
    Canadian Volunteer Service Medal with Clasp
    Canadian Volunteer Service Medal with Clasp
    awarded for military service overseas during WW II. The Canadian Volunteer Service Medal is granted to persons of any rank in the Naval, Military or Air Forces of Canada who voluntarily served on Active Service and have honourably completed eighteen months (540 days)(18 mths) total voluntary service from September 3, 1939 to March 1, 1947.
    War Medal 1939-1945 with oak leaf.
    War Medal 1939-1945 with oak leaf.
    awarded for military service overseas during WW II. The Star was awarded for six months service on active operations for Army and Navy, and two months for active air-crew between 02 September 1939 and 08 May 1945 (Europe) or 02 September 1945 (Pacific).
    Defence Medal WW II
    Defence Medal WW II
    Left to Right:
Royal Canadian Navy White Ensign,
Royal Canadian Navy Volunteer Reserve RCNVR,
Royal Canadian Navy Regular Force RCN, 
Royal Canadian Navy Reserve RCNR and 
Royal Canadian Navy Blue Ensign
    Left to Right: Royal Canadian Navy White Ensign, Royal Canadian Navy Volunteer Reserve RCNVR, Royal Canadian Navy Regular Force RCN, Royal Canadian Navy Reserve RCNR and Royal Canadian Navy Blue Ensign
    "I Need Your Help" - WW II recruiting slogan for the Royal Canadian Navy WW II
    John Wilfred Beattie 1921-1978 partner of Lois Wendy Stewart Campbell 1932-2004
    John Wilfred Beattie 1921-1978 partner of Lois Wendy Stewart Campbell 1932-2004

    Headstones
    John Wilfred Beattie 1921-1978 & Lois Wendy Stewart Campbell 1932-2004
    John Wilfred Beattie 1921-1978 & Lois Wendy Stewart Campbell 1932-2004
    John Wilfred Beattie RCNVR on the Canadian minesweeper HMCS Cowichan J-146 as RCNA. 31st Minesweeping Flotilla Plaque, Omaha Beach, Normandy, France commemorates their landing on Normandy.
    John Wilfred Beattie RCNVR on the Canadian minesweeper HMCS Cowichan J-146 as RCNA. 31st Minesweeping Flotilla Plaque, Omaha Beach, Normandy, France commemorates their landing on Normandy.
    The following is written on the plaque; 31st Canadian Minesweeping Flotilla Commemorative Plaque,Omaha Beach, Normandy. Minesweepers were vital to the success of Allied landings in Normandy. Bangor Class minesweepers of the Royal Canadian Navy, from the beginning of May until D-Day, 6 June 1944, opened up the channels for the Western Task Force landing on Omaha and Utah Beaches. HMCS Caraquet (Commander A.H.G. "Tony" Storrs, RCNR), HMCS Cowichan, HMCS Malpeque, HMCS Fort William, HMCS Minas, HMCS Blairmore, HMCS Milltown, HMCS Wasaga, HMCS Bayfield and HMCS Mulgrave formed the 31st Canadian Minesweeping Flotilla; HMCS Thunder, HMCS Vegreville, HMCS Kenora, HMCS Guysborough, HMCS Georgian and HMCS Canso joined the British 4th, 14th and 16th Flotillas. Just after midnight on 6 June, using electronic navigation aids of extreme precision, unable to take evasive action if under attack, sometimes within a mile and a half of the German coastal guns, and thus the spearhead for the landings, the 31st, 4th and 14th flotillas off Omaha Beach, and the 16th flotilla off Utah Beach, successfully cleared the assault channels, undetected by the enemy, in spite of moonlight that "provided ample illumination" for the defences of Germany’s vaunted ‘Atlantic Wall’.

  • Notes 
    • Wilfred was born Dec. 28 1921. Passed away Aug.27 1978. Buried in Colborne Cemetery (across from St. Peters.) He joined the Royal Canadian Navy Voluntary Reserve (RCNVR) in London Ont (at HMCS Prevost, 19 Becher St.) and went to HMCS Cornwallis, near Digby, Nova Scotia for his Basic Training. He served on the minesweeper HMCS Cowichan J-146 as RCNA (ABNA? Able Seaman Naval Armament?). He was deployed on the raid on the beaches of Normandy. The first minesweeper going in was destroyed, he was on the second minesweeper (HMCS Cowichan) and made it in & out and the third mineweeper was also destroyed. He was very lucky to ever have made it home. Quite an experience. He never talked about it much.
      He was the greatest big brother to me. One week he would send a letter to Mom & Dad and the next week to me. All his mail was censored before sending by having certain parts cut out of them. Wish I had of kept them. He also sent me a $50.00 War bond and it felt like winning the lottery!

      Wilfred sent the head shot picture to me in a cardboard frame in which it said (always thinking of you.) I forgot to send his Service Number was V45403 in the Royal Canadian Navy Volunteer Reserve (RCNVR)

      Wilfred's medals and decorations shown in order of precedence were: 1939-1945 Star, France and Germany Star, Canadian Volunteer Service Medal with clasp (awarded for 60 or more days service outside Canada) and The War Medal 1939-1945 and The Atlantic Star 1939-1945.

      above written with Love by Betty (Beattie)Young 30 Nov 2011(with edits by Peter Etue)

      During the war, the Ship's Captains of HMCS Cowichan were:
      Lt. R. Jackson, RCNR 13 Jun 1941 to 20 Jun 1941
      Lt. J.R. Kidstin, RCNVR 01 Jul 1941 to 6 Feb 1942
      Skpr Lt. H.W. Stone RCNR 7 Feb 1942 to 25 Oct 1942
      Skpr Lt. K.N.W. Hall RCNR 26 Oct 1942 to 09 Oct 1945. John would have served under one or more of the above mentioned Captains of HMCS Cowichan. After their arrival in Plymouth England 13 Mar 1944, Skpr Lt K.N.W. Hall RCNR took HMCS Cowichan on the D Day invasion of Normandy beaches in Jun 1944

      HMCS - Her Majesty's Canadian Ship
      RCN - Royal Canadian Nanvy Regular Force member
      RCNR - Royal Canadian Navy Reserve member.
      RCNVR - Royal Canadian Navy Volunteer Reserve member.
      RCNA - Royal Canadian Navy ????

      His friend was Lois Wendy Stewart Campbell 1932-2004.

      The History of the COWICHAN (1st)
      HMCS Cowichan (J146) was a Bangor-class minesweeper that served in the Royal Canadian Navy during World War II. Commissioned at Vancouver on July 4, 1941, she sailed from Esquimalt for Halifax on August 6, arriving on September 10. After working up in Bermuda she was initially assigned to Halifax Local Defence Force, but was transferred in January, 1942, to Newfoundland Force and in September to WLEF. With WLEF'S division into escort groups in June, 1943, Cowichan became a member of EG W-6. She remained with the group until February, 1944, when she was order- ed to the U.K. for invasion duties. She left Halifax on February 19 with Caraquet, Malpeque and Vegreville via the Azores for Plymouth, arriving on March 13. Assigned to the 31st Minesweeping Flotilla, she was present on D-Day. Cowichan returned to Canada for refit late in February, 1945, but resumed her duties overseas in June 1945. Proceeding home in September 1945 she was paid off on October 9, 1945, and was placed in reserve at Shelburne, Nova Scotia. She was sold in 1946 to a New York buyer and converted for mercantile purposes under Greek flag, she still existed in 1956 under her original name.
      Statistical Data
      Pendant: J146
      Type: Minesweeper
      Class: BANGOR Class (39-40 Programme)
      Displacement: 672 tonnes
      Length: 180 ft
      Width: 28.5 ft
      Draught: 8.3 ft
      Speed: 16 kts
      Compliment: 6 Officers and 77 Crew
      Arms: 1-4" Gun, 1-3" Gun, 2-20mm
      Builder: North Van Ship Repairs Ltd., Vancouver, B.C.
      Keel Laid: 24-Apr-40
      Date Launched: 08-Sep-40
      Date Commissioned: 4-Jul-41
      Paid off: 09-Oct-45

      31st Canadian Minesweeping Flotilla Commemorative Plaque
      at Omaha Beach Normandy, France.
      Minesweepers were vital to the success of Allied landings in Normandy. Bangor Class minesweepers of the Royal Canadian Navy, from the beginning of May until D-Day, 6 June 1944, opened up the channels for the Western Task Force landing on Omaha and Utah Beaches. HMCS Caraquet J38 (Commander A.H.G. "Tony" Storrs, RCNR), HMCS Cowichan J146, HMCS Mapleque J148, HMCS Fort William J311, HMCS Minas J185, HMCS Blairmore J314, HMCS Milltown J317, HMCS Wasaga J162, HMCS Bayfield J08 and HMCS Mulgrave J313 formed the 31st Canadian Minesweeping Flotilla. HMCS Thunder 156, HMCS Vegreville J257, HMCS Kenora J281, HMCS Guysborough J52, HMCS Georgian J144 and HMCS Canso J21 joined the British 4th, 14th and 16th Flotillas. Just after midnight on 6 June 1944, using electronic navigation aids of extreme precision, unable to take evasive action if under attack, sometimes within a mile and a half of the German coastal guns, and thus the spearhead for the landings, the 31st, 4th and 14th flotillas off Omaha Beach, and the 16th flotilla off Utah Beach, successfully cleared the assault channels, undetected by the enemy, in spite of moonlight that "provided ample illumination" for the defences of Germany's vaunted Atlantic Wall.