Department of National Defence

Department of National Defence
Canadian Navy

Canadian Navy

December 02, 2008 09:00 ET

Canadian Navy: Honorary Captain(N) Receives Prestigious and Exclusive Military Award

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - Dec. 2, 2008) - On December 2nd, during the honorary navy captain symposium held in Esquimalt, British Columbia, Honorary Captain(N) William "Bill" Wilson achieved a military milestone by being awarded the 4th Clasp to his Canadian Forces Decoration (CD), marking 52 years of honoured service in the Canadian Forces (CF).

"To serve our country is truly an honour," said Canada's Minister of National Defence, the Honourable Peter MacKay. "To have served Canada for 52 years as HCapt(N) Wilson is a tremendous milestone that he and all Canadians can look upon with pride."

"To receive the 4th Clasp to his CD for having given 52 years of honourable service to our country, places HCapt(N) Wilson in an exclusive club of Canadian Forces members," said General Walt Natynczyk, Chief of the Defence Staff. "His loyalty, dedication and service to country are inspiring and an example to us all!"

HCapt(N) Wilson's lifelong connection with the Canadian Navy began with his service during the Second World War and continued when he stayed on as a member of the Naval Reserves and continues today as an HCapt(N). "HCapt(N) Wilson has shown his dedication to Canada's Navy for 52 years and today that dedication was acknowledged by his being awarded the 4th Clasp to his CD." says Chief of the Maritime Staff, Vice-Admiral Drew Robertson. "He exemplifies the Navy's core values of mutual respect, trust, accountability, efficiency, innovation and service to Canada, Canadians and his fellow sailors."

Honorary captains act as bridges between military and civilian communities, representing diverse areas of influence such as politics, business, journalism and the arts, and have the unique skills and connections to strengthen the navy's ties to Canadian communities and to promote a better understanding of maritime defence issues. They are quite visible, attending significant naval, CF and public events and ceremonies in uniform across the country, bridging the gap between military and civilian communities. Honorary captains are appointed by the Minister of National Defence after receiving recommendations from the Chief of the Defence Staff and the Chief of the Maritime Staff. These appointments are generally for a period of three years, however, extensions may be granted.


The CD is awarded to a CF member who has completed 12 years of honourable service and clasps are awarded for each subsequent period of 10 years qualifying service. There have been only 37 recipients of the 4th Clasp since 1998 and only two recipients have ever been awarded a 5th Clasp, the Queen Mother and Air Commodore Leonard Birchall.

To coordinate interviews or to acquire a photo of the event, reporters are asked to contact Eric Cameron, NDPAO Calgary at 403-974-2826.

Contact Information

  • Navy Public Affairs
    Lt Stef Campbell
    Navy Public Affairs
    613-225-3085 (FAX)