Department of National Defence

Department of National Defence

March 24, 2014 13:50 ET

Governor General Returns Colour to 450 Tactical Helicopter Squadron

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - March 24, 2014) - Department of National Defence

His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada and Commander-in-Chief of Canada, today returned the 450 Tactical Helicopter Squadron (450 THS) Colour to squadron personnel during a ceremony held today at Canadian Forces Base (CFB) Petawawa, Ontario.

The 450 Squadron Colour - a special, consecrated flag that is specific to military units - has been retired since 1998 when the unit was stood down. It was returned to the re-activated Squadron with all the protocol befitting the occasion, with military music and a ceremonial inspection of 450 THS members by His Excellency.

It was a proud milestone for members of 450 THS - which was reactivated on May 2, 2012, at CFB Petawawa - as the Squadron phases the Chinooks into full operational capability by 2017. Since re-activation, 450 THS has been forging the skills and expertise needed to establish an in-Canada training capability.

Quick Facts

  • 450 Tactical Helicopter Squadron (450 THS) was originally formed as 450 Heavy Transport Helicopter Squadron in 1968 from 1 Army Helicopter Transport Platoon, Royal Canadian Army Service Corps, was re-designated 450 Transport Helicopter Squadron in 1970, and re-designated 450 THS in 1993. It was disbanded January 1, 1998, and re-activated May 2, 2012.

  • A squadron is eligible to receive its Colour - which is a standard bearing the squadron badge, motto and battle honours (if they have been awarded) - after 25 years of existence. They are held in the highest esteem and are brought out on display for only important parades and occasions, under the escort of an armed 'Colour Party' consisting of an Officer and at least two Non-Commissioned Officers.

  • On April 10, 1958, Her Majesty approved the awarding of Standards to operational squadrons of the RCAF, stipulating "a rectangular silk flag two feet eight inches on the staff and four feet in the fly. It shall be light blue in colour and have a border composed of the floral emblems of the ten provinces of Canada in coloured silks, and in the centre shall be the Squadron badge, with white scrolls as required on which the Battle Honours of the Squadron shall be inscribed in black."

  • 450 THS flies the CH-147F Chinook helicopter. The Royal Canadian Air Force accepted the first Canadian F-model Chinook on June 27, 2013. The tenth helicopter was delivered less than two weeks ago.


"I would like to congratulate the members of 450 Tactical Helicopter Squadron on the receipt of their Colour. Its return demonstrates our continued pride in the Royal Canadian Air Force and the Canadian Armed Forces as a whole."

The Honourable Robert Nicholson, Minister of National Defence

"The receipt of the Standard marks the trust placed in the Squadron by all Canadians who will be well served by 450 Squadron as it moves forward as an operational squadron of the Royal Canadian Air Force. The ceremony is a milestone in the life of the Squadron as it builds a new heavy-lift helicopter capability for the Canadian Armed Forces."

Major-General Richard Foster, Deputy Commander, Royal Canadian Air Force.

"This is a proud moment for 450 Squadron. It reminds us of our devotion to duty, Canada and our Queen, as we move ahead with the job of bringing the Chinook towards operational capability."

Lieutenant-Colonel Duart Townsend, Commanding Officer, 450 Tactical Helicopter Squadron.

Associated Links

450 Tactical Helicopter Squadron:

National Defence Directorate of History and Heritage - Official Lineages, 450 Squadron:

CH-147F Chinook helicopter:

Royal Canadian Air Force:

Contact Information

  • 450 Tactical Helicopter Squadron:
    Captain Martin Bergeron
    Unit Public Affairs Representative
    (613) 687-5511 x3878

    1 Wing Headquarters:
    Captain John-Hugh MacDonald
    Public Affairs Officer
    (613) 541-5010 x8264

    Media Relations:
    Department of National Defence
    (613) 996-2353
    Toll-Free: 1 866 377-0811