The HMCS Nanaimo sails past the Fisgard Lighthouse upon its return to Victoria following a two-month deployment. (Arnold Lim/Black Press)

Sailors reunited with family for Christmas in Victoria

HMCS Nanaimo and HMCS Edmonton return following a two-month deployment

After two months combatting illicit drug trafficking, 100 sailors are home again.

HMCS Nanaimo and HMCS Edmonton returned from Operation CARRIBE, a multinational effort into the Caribbean and eastern Pacific Ocean targeting the drug trade. The two ships docked at CFB Esquimalt a day earlier than expected, but not too early for dozens of friends and family that lined the dockyard to welcome the sailors back.

RELATED: Submariners come home after 197-day deployment

“I am so happy that he is home, we are so, so thrilled, excited to get the Christmas celebrations going now,” said Megan Ronaldson.

She welcomed her husband Mike home with a sign reading “welcome home daddy” with her daughter and in-laws, showering him with hugs and kisses for the first time in approximately 10 weeks.

“I’m just ecstatic to be home, it’s been a little over two months and these are the most important people in my life and I am glad to be back to them,” Mike said. “Every time you come back it is the best day and super exciting.”

The two ships, operated by approximately 50 people respectively, arrived to cheers and jubilation after working in what Commander Jason Bergen said were “challenging” conditions for an important mission.

ALSO SEE: Navy ships return from overseas deployment

“As a team, [HMCS] Edmonton seized over 2,000 kilograms of drugs,” Bergen said. “Which makes over 17,000 kg of cocaine for the year for the Canadian Armed Forces, so that is a success and a success for the U.S. Coast Guard as well.”



arnold.lim@blackpress.ca

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