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

  • A nurse and six of her family members have COVID-19, and it began with a small act of kindness

    World News CTV News
    New Jersey nurse Sofia Burke said it took one family member letting their guard down "for one second" for COVID-19 to infect seven of the eight people in her household. Burke spoke with CNN's Don Lemon through an oxygen mask Wednesday. Source
  • China hits out at U.S. after report of new visa restrictions

    World News CTV News
    BEIJING -- China on Thursday accused critics in the U.S. government of "an escalation of political suppression" against Beijing following a report of new visa restrictions on members of China's ruling Communist Party and their immediate family members. Source
  • Kyle Rittenhouse has preliminary hearing on Wisconsin charges

    World News CTV News
    KENOSHA, WIS. -- A 17-year-old from Illinois accused of killing two men during an August protest in Wisconsin is due in court Thursday for a preliminary hearing in the case. Kyle Rittenhouse, of Antioch, is also charged in the wounding of a third person on Aug. Source
  • Hundreds of Ethiopian immigrants get warm welcome in Israel

    World News CTV News
    BEN-GURION INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, ISRAEL -- Hundreds of Ethiopian immigrants on Thursday arrived to a festive ceremony at Israel's international airport, as the government took a step toward carrying out its pledge to reunite hundreds of families split between the two countries. Source
  • This London, Ont. teen wants a national, three-digit suicide help line and politicians are taking action

    Canada News CBC News
    After not being able to access help herself, a 19-year-old Ontario woman is pushing for a three-digit suicide help line and politicians are starting to listen. Madi Muggridge, from London, Ont., struggled with anxiety and depression at a young age, but the situation got particularly bad when she was 13 years old and scary thoughts started to trickle in, she told CBC News. Source
  • Fishing tournament organizer fined after nearly 200 fish found in dumpster

    Canada News CBC News
    A fishing tournament organizer and TV personality has brought his business to New Brunswick after being fined $9,000 and losing his Ontario fishing licence for not reporting the nearly 200 dead bass he threw into a dumpster. Ben Woo was convicted of failing to abide by the terms and conditions of the licence allowing tournament organizers to transport fish to be weighed and measured before they were returned live to the water. Source
  • Alberta planning COVID-19 field hospitals for 750 patients, internal document shows

    Canada News CBC News
    An internal Alberta government document shows the province has been planning for more than a week to set up indoor field hospitals to treat 750 COVID-19 patients. The Alberta Health Services (AHS) document, dated Nov. 28 and obtained by CBC News, details a draft implementation plan for two or more facilities, with 375 beds each in Calgary and Edmonton for patients with mild-to-moderate symptoms. Source
  • Canada-U.S. border rules: Why some travellers get to cross while others are shut out

    Canada News CBC News
    Kim Zavesky is desperate to return to her home in Golden, B.C. After retiring last year, she and her husband — both Americans — sold their house in Chandler, Ariz., and moved most of their belongings to their second home in Golden, in southeastern British Columbia. Source
  • Why the 1976 U.S. swine flu vaccinations may offer lessons for the COVID-19 pandemic

    Canada News CBC News
    For Pascal Imperato, a communicable disease epidemiologist who in 1976 was in charge of immunizing New York City against a potential swine flu epidemic, the effort to vaccinate the population against COVID-19 feels like a familiar challenge. "We were going to vaccinate six million people in six weeks," he said in a phone interview. Source
  • Annamie Paul's low profile isn't helping the Greens, polls suggest

    Canada News CBC News
    Annamie Paul made history two months ago when she became the first Black permanent leader of a federal party in Canada — but polls suggest she has yet to make an impact on support for the Green Party she leads. Source