Navy; Reserves; Second World War
Commander McKee joined the RCNVR, the Naval Volunteer Reserve when he turned 18, in March ‘43, as an Ordinary Seaman. Planning on becoming a Visual Signalman, since his Father was then overseas commanding an Army Signals Regiment. He was commissioned as an Acting Sub-Lieutenant in ‘44. During the war he served in a couple of shore stations, in an Armed Yacht, one trip in an ex-USN 4-stacker destroyer, another in the corvette SACKVILLE, and served as asdic officer in an Algerine ocean escort, whose blazer crest he wears today. He remained in the Naval Reserves in Ontario and Montreal post-war, specializing in all aspects of anti-submarine warfare. He eventually served in various Canadian and British warships, from 3 aircraft carriers to destroyers, frigates, and twice in submarines. Also as well in a Coastal Command flying Squadron. He retired in 1975 as an active Reserve. He has a library of c. 1,500 naval, Enigma code & maritime books, wrote or co-wrote 6 books on Canadian naval history, a Naval Reserves novel, and a paper on mine warfare for National Defence. He lives in west Toronto, is a widower with 4 grown children.