A Royal Canadian Navy ship landed at Port Alberni today to a welcome from Tseshaht members.
Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship Ottawa came to the Port Alberni dock at approximately 10 a.m. to begin a two-day stay. The ship is open for free guided tours on Saturday from 1-4 p.m., giving the public a chance to see the vessel and its crew before HMCS Ottawa departs on Sunday morning.
A group of Tseshaht members sang for the 442-foot ship as it docked, while the vessel’s crew members tugged at ropes to secure it to the Port Alberni Port Authority’s Berth 3.
The First Nation welcomed Commander Sam Patrick to its territory, land that the navy vessel is tasked by the Government of Canada to defend. Tseshaht Chief Councillor Ken Watts explained that the ship was docked at the sacred site of ƛuukʷatquuʔis, Wolf Ritual Beach.
Gifts were given by the commander to Tseshaht Ha’wiih. The First Nation also gave artwork and a necklace to Patrick, followed by song and dance and a tour of the vessel for Tseshaht members.