Melba Croft Notes: Particulars of Canadian War- Vessels Building & Projected., Glenada [C.N.534] launched 23/11/1943. Canadian List of Shipping 1956: Glenada [C.177886] registered at Montreal; built at Owen Sound in 1943, 73'2 x 20' x 7'5; 101 g.t.; 25 n.t.; 320 hp. Owned by National Harbours Board, Ottawa. GAO Notes: Steel tug Glenada [C.177886] built by Russel Bros, Ltd., at Owen Sound, Ontario in 1943. Owned by Sandrin Bros., Sarnia until 1995, when acquired by Thunder Bay Tug Services, Thunder Bay Ontario. See also Griffon, F. A, Johnson and Donna B. and Richard M. Marshall clipping files.
This classic tug was built in 1944 by Russel Brothers Ltd. as the yard tug Glenada for the Royal Canadian Navy. In 1947, she was sold to the National Harbours Board. The St. Lawrence Seaway Authority acquired the tug in 1956, and in 1965 she was passed to the Minister of Transport. The Glenada was sold civilian in 1973, when she was bought by Sandrin Brothers of Sarnia, Ontario. Thunder Bay Tug Services acquired the vessel in 1995.
The Glenada works in ship assistance and towing in Thunder Bay.
Type: Single Screw Tugboat
Year Built: 1944
Builder: Russel Brothers Ltd., Owen Sound, ON
Engines: 1 Caterpillar D399
Horsepower: 1,125 bhp
Length: 80' 06?
Breadth: 25' 00?
Depth: 10' 01?
Port of Registry: Thunder Bay, ON.
Cornwall, Aug. 3 1957. Dan McCormick photo courtesy Rene Beauchamp. Rene Beauchamp notes (May 25, 2017): The photo was taken by my friend, the late Dan McCormick. Glenada was in the Bingley's drydock at Cornwall. My historical notes has the following... "In 1946, sold to Sincennes-McNaughton by the navy. The following year, sold to the NHB and in 1954 to unkown buyers (to me) By 1960, she was owned by the St.Lawrence Seaway Authority. Then went into the hands of the DOT, name change for the CCG later on."
Matthew Carlson notes (Oct. 2016): "Glenada was heavily modified after she was retired from the Canadian Navy with a blown engine in 1973. She was widened by 2 feet on each side using sponson tanks, new wheelhouse, back rooms removed from the lower deck and re-powered with a Caterpillar D399 v16 Diesel engine producing 1300hp."
Glenada downbound passing the Fort Gratiot Light, Port Huron. Photo by Skip Meier, boatnerd.com.
1978 tow of the disabled Pierson Daughters with an unusual deck cargo of fabricated steel by the tugs Barbara Ann and Glenada. Passing upbound is the Montrealais. St. Clair River. Photo courtesy George Lee.
GLENADA in the St.Lawrence Seaway, St.Lambert section. She was towing an old laker, the R. BRUCE ANGUS on her way to a shipbreaking yard overseas. July 18, 1985. Marc Piche photo courtesy Rene Beauchamp.
Matthew Carlson notes (Oct. 14, 2016): The second Russel tug I work on, the WW2 tug Glenada. Built in 1943, 76' long, 23' beam. Heavily modified after she was retired from the Canadian Navy with a Blown engine in 1973. She was widened by 2 feet on each side using sponson tanks, new wheelhouse, back rooms removed from the lower deck and repowered with a Caterpillat D399 v16 Diesel engine producing 1300hp. The Glenada was purchased by Thunder Bay Tug Services in 1995 from Sandrin Brothers in Sarnia, Ontario. This tug has gained some local fame for several rescues of pleasure boats, fishing boats and for rescuing the crew of the Grampa Woo cruise boat in a bad storm.
Plaque reads: "Tug Glenada" Capt. Gerry Dawson, Chief Engineer Jack Olson, Deckhand James Harding are highly commended for their courage and skilful seamanship in the rescue and saving of two men from the vessel "Grampa Woo" on Oct. 31, 1996 during storm force winds and 18 ft. seas on Lake Superior. Congratulations on a job well done.
Published on 18 Dec 2015
On ‘Devil’s Night’ October 30, 1996, in pitch blackness, hurricane force winds and a 20 foot cross-sea on Lake Superior, the crew of the Thunder Bay tug Glenada rescued 2 Americans stranded onboard a drifting yacht named Grampa Woo. What has been called a "mysterious lull" - a momentary calming of the waves - occurred during the rescue attempt, placing both vessels on the same level for an instant and allowing the standed sailors be lifted aboard Glenada, literally by the seat of their pants. Grampa Woo later smashed against Isle Royale and sank (the beginning of the film shows the mangled wreckage).
A Canadian Coast Guard cutter, the Westfort, was standing by during the rescue but unable to help because it was icing up in the freezing spray and rolling rail-to-rail as the crew desperately tried to avoid capsizing.
Once the Americans were safely aboard Glenada, both vessels ran for shelter on the Sleeping Giant penninsula. But Lake Superior - and whatever dark forces were swirling around them that night - took one more stab at Westfort: catatonic winds spun the vessel in a circle just 100 feet from shore. Glenada shone it's searchlight to help the crew get its bearings and both ships finally beached like whales at Tee Harbour to wait out the storm.
2013. The Kam River and docked, in Thunder Bay. Photos by Matthew Carlson.
For more Russel exhibits visit Owen Sound Marine & Rail Museum 1165 1st Ave West, Owen Sound, ON N4K 4K8 (519) 371-3333 http://marinerail.com