Historic same-sex kiss marks return of HMCS Winnipeg to Victoria

The first kiss between a sailor and a loved one reuniting after months at sea has always been a celebrated tradition – but in Victoria, it has made history.

See Full Article

With cheers erupting from a crowd at CFB Esquimalt’s dockyard on Tuesday, Master Seaman Francis Legare stepped off HMCS Winnipeg into his partner Corey’s arms as they shared what is believed to be the first-ever “first kiss” between two men.

“It’s just unreal, it’s great. I’m just speechless right now,” said Legare, who had been at sea with his crewmates for 255 days.

Crew members all told CTV News there may have previously been a same-sex first kiss between two women, but this is the first time in Canada they’ve seen two men taking part in the tradition.

“I think it’s wonderful,” said HMCS Winnipeg Rear Admiral Gilles Couturier. “The Canadian Armed Forces embraces people whatever their preferences are, and I think it’s great.”

Legare bought tickets for the raffle that determines which sailor gets to have the coveted first kiss – and won.

He said all of his shipmates were supportive about him and Corey getting the spotlight this time around.

“I just bought a ticket because all the money goes to charity, I wasn’t thinking I was going to win,” he said. “It just proves that the Navy is sending a strong message and we are supported, and it’s very great.”

Legare, who is originally from Quebec, said he and his partner will now relax for the 41 days he has off – and he’ll get back to cooking some authentic French cuisine.

Hutchinson said the Navy has had to evolve on the topic over the years to properly reflect society.

“We have to. We are a reflective society,” he said. “We do recruit across all of the spectrum of society, and if we don’t adapt, we won’t have any sailors joining.”

History made in Esquimalt with traditional first kiss between crew of HMCS Winnipeg and his partner. See @CTVNewsVIpic.twitter.com/fwZ05NgiHf

— Robert Buffam (@CTVNewsRob) February 23, 2016

The ship returned home after participating in operations Caribbe, a multinational campaign against trafficking, and Reassurance, in which the crew took part in NATO-led joint exercises.

It also made headlines when three crew members were detained during a stop in Tokyo, Japan based on allegations of drug use.

Ian Greenwood, the son of retired Rear Admiral Richard Greenwood, faces a charge relating to drug use and remains in custody.

A civilian fitness instructor from the ship has also been charged with drug use.

Both were charged after Japanese police administered drug tests, but the charges have yet to be proven in a court of law.

A third Canadian, Jack Lawson, was taken into custody and subsequently released by police after a drug test.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Early agreement reached in dispute over Suez Canal ship

    World News CTV News
    CAIRO -- The owners and insurers of the giant container ship that blocked the Suez Canal for nearly a week earlier this year have reached an agreement in principle over their dispute with canal authorities, representatives from both sides said Wednesday. Source
  • Canadian women's soccer team wants to climb further up the Olympic podium

    Canada News CBC News
    With the official announcement of the Canadian women's Olympic soccer roster revealed by Canadian coach Bev Priestman Wednesday, the team can now concentrate on a loftier goal. Winners of back-to-back bronze medals, the Canadian players have aspirations of reaching the medal podium for an unprecedented third consecutive time at the Tokyo Olympics. Source
  • Israel's new government OKs first settlement construction

    World News CTV News
    JERUSALEM -- An Israeli defense ministry body advanced plans for 31 West Bank settlement construction projects Wednesday, the first such move under the country's new government. The plans approved by the Civil Administration include a shopping center, a special needs school and a number of infrastructure projects and zoning changes in existing West Bank settlements, Israeli media reported. Source
  • About 50 people forced from their homes as wildfire west of Edmonton keeps growing

    Canada News CBC News
    A wildfire west of Edmonton that triggered evacuation orders in parts of Yellowhead County on Tuesday continues to burn out of control and is expected to keep growing. "We do expect fire activity to pick up today as temperatures rise," Josee St-Onge, a provincial wildfire information officer said in an interview Wednesday. Source
  • Watchdog calls rate of child sexual abuse in Nunavut a crisis

    Canada News CTV News
    Nunavut's representative for children and youth says the territory's high rate of child sexual abuse amounts to a crisis. Jane Bates testified this week before legislature members to discuss her office's 2019-2020 annual report. Source
  • Nearly $37 million needed to fix ‘critical’ deterioration at 24 Sussex Drive: NCC

    Canada News CTV News
    OTTAWA -- It will cost $175 million over 10 years to restore Canada’s six official residences to good condition, according to a new report from the National Capital Commission. The homes—including the prime minister’s residence at 24 Sussex Drive—have deteriorated due to years of underfunding. Source
  • Japanese court says married couples must stick to single surname

    World News CBC News
    Japan's Supreme Court ruled on Wednesday that laws requiring married couples to have the same surname are constitutional, dismissing a challenge by three couples seeking to keep separate names. The decision to affirm a 2015 Supreme Court ruling was a disappointment for rights activists who say the laws violate the constitution's guarantee of gender equality, since women almost always sacrifice their surnames. Source
  • Airstrike in Ethiopia's Tigray kills more than 50: witnesses

    World News CTV News
    NAIROBI, KENYA -- An airstrike hit a busy market in Ethiopia's northern Tigray village of Togoga on Tuesday and killed at least 51 people, according to health workers who said soldiers blocked medical teams from traveling to the scene. Source
  • 'It was a hoot': Owl with broken wing that was coaxed into a dog kennel set free in B.C. after recovery

    Canada News CTV News
    VANCOUVER -- An owl with a broken wing that was rescued by highway patrol officers last fall has been set free after its recovery. Last September, a BC Highway Patrol officer spotted an injured owl on Highway 7 near Ruby Creek between Agassiz and Hope. Source
  • Nova Scotia reports no new cases of COVID-19 Wednesday; active cases drop to 60

    Canada News CTV News
    HALIFAX -- Nova Scotia is reporting no new cases of COVID-19 Wednesday, as well as 14 recoveries, as the active number of cases in the province drops to 60 - the lowest number of active cases reported in the province since April 18. Source