The Royal Canadian Navy was active in operations along the Pacific coast from 1939 to 1945, patrolling British Columbia waters and helping to support the Allied war effort. West coast shipyards built ships for the navy and the merchant navy.
This chapel forms part of the naval cemetery at Esquimalt, the final resting place of naval personnel ranging from ordinary seamen to senior officers.
Acquired by Britain's Royal Navy in 1868, "God's acre" had previously been a turnip field. The cemetery accepted burials of sailors and, later, soldiers. The small chapel, built of woods from various parts of the British Empire, was left unconsecrated so it could be used by all faiths. Ships' crews gradually adorned its interior with simple memorials and lanterns from their vessels.
The Naval Chapel
Painted by Tony Law in 1945
Beaverbrook Collection of War Art