USNS Grapple paid a visit to Halifax earlier this month. When She left, she gave a “random” (ie not a major port) destination in Quebec. It now appears that she was tasked with the recovery of remains of the aircrew of a PBY 5A Catalina Aircraft which went down in November 1942 off the coast of Longue-Pointe-de-Mingan, on the north shore of the St. Lawrence River.
Parks Canada Discovered the aircraft in 2009. You can read more about the Recvoery at PC.GC.CA
One of the primary roles for Catalina Aircraft (And the Canadian version, the Canso) was anti-submarine warfare. the PBY was likely patroling the Gulf of St Lawerence when it went down.
USNS Grapple arrived this Morning, and Tied up at NB, Next to the Casino. Still unsure why her arrival was delayed by a day. Grapple was heavily invoved in the recovery of SwissAir 111 off Peggys Cove in 1998.
This years US Navy Port visit will be handled by the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer USS Laboon (DDG-58). Every year the US Navy snds a vessel to hold commemorations for he US Sailors Buried on Deadmans Island from the War of 1812.
USS Laboon Was Commissioned in July 1995, and visited Halifax in September of that year.
The SS Wright (T-AVB-3) is currently in the outer harbour anchorage. She is a Aviation Logistics Support Ships built for the United States Navy in 1968. Despite Being in the ready reserve, she appeared to be conducting Flying operations, which may explain why she is anchored more to the west then normal.
Wikipedia tells us that She is
The lead ship of her class of two, she was originally laid down 1 June 1968 at Ingalls Shipbuilding, Inc. of Pascagoula, Mississippi as SS Mormacsun, a Maritime Commission type (C5-S-78) Ro-Ro vessel under Maritime Administration contract (MA 224) for Moore-McCormack Lines. Launched 1 July 1969, she was delivered to the Maritime Administration (MARAD) 1 February 1970 and subsequently renamed SS Young America (date unknown). Again renamed SS Wright (T-AVB-3) on 14 May 1986, the ship was assigned to MARAD Ready Reserve Force (RRF), MSC PM-5 Sealift Program Office, Logistics Prepositioning Force.
Wright provides support for Marine Corps helicopters and is maintained in reduced status ROS-5 (five day reactivation status) at Baltimore, Maryland.
The Chronicle Herald reported that the boat is USS Boise (SSN-764) – A Improved Los-Angeles class sub based out of Norfolk Va. She was here for Memorial Day Commemorations on Dead Mans Island, where 200 US sailors are Buried from the War of 1812.
She is scheduled to sail today at 1400. (Photos to follow)