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The Second World War
The Merchant Navy  - Serving with the Merchant Navy

During the Second World War, Canadian and Allied merchant mariners faced the constant hard work of operating and maintaining their ships, the threat of enemy attack, and the dangers of accidents and storms.

Merchant Navy War Service Badge, Somer Oscar James
Merchant Navy War Service Badge, Somer Oscar James

Somer Oscar James received this war service badge, bearing the initials "MN" for "merchant navy", for his service as a merchant mariner.

James joined the merchant navy in 1941, sailing in 12 different ships before his war ended in August 1945. The Canadian government created the badge in 1941 to recognize the service of Canada's merchant mariners, most of whom wore civilian clothing ashore because they had no uniforms. In 1948, the Canadian government extended eligibility to Canadian merchant mariners who had served in Allied merchant ships.

War Service Badge
CWM 20040003-002

Merchant Navy War Service Badge, Somer Oscar James
Painting a Life Raft, SS Temagami Park
Engine Room, SS Kelowna Park (CAN)
Shaft Tunnel, SS Kelowna Park (CAN)
Merchant Navy Uniform, Clovis Ira Bordeleau
Balaclava, Clovis Ira Bordeleau
Christmas Card, SS Lady Rodney
Identity Bracelet, Robert Bush
Torpedoed, North Atlantic
Burning Oil Tanker
Torpedo Damage, SS Samtucky
Torpedo Damage, MS Kronprinsen
Storm Damage, SS Joel R. Poinsett
MV Nipiwan Park
Memorial Cross, Third Engineer Alfred Henry Perry, SS Fort Longueuil
Rescuing Survivors
HMCS Longueuil Rescues Survivors
Port of New York Identity Card, Ernest Shackleton
Ordinary Seaman Somer Oscar James
Telegram, Percy Kelly, SS Lady Hawkins
Chief Officer Percy Kelly