Early Chinese–Canadian Naval Officers

by John M. MacFarlane 2015

Wm Lore

Lieutenant–Commander William King Lowd Lore RCNVR (1909–2012).

William King Lowd Lore

William King Lowd Lore was born in Victoria BC on 28/02/1909. When the Second World War was declared in 1939 the Royal Canadian Navy began an unprecedented expansion. Through most of the War Chinese Canadians were not among those who were recruited. He saw service in the Pacific and was present in Hong Kong at the liberation and led a detachment of Royal Marines to liberate prisoners of war held in the barracks of HMS Tamar, the naval detachment in Hong Kong. His service was very unusual, as prejudices were reflected in the makeup of the group of officers holding commissions at that time and he was a fore–runner to the uptake of young officer candidates from other Commonwealth countries.

Wm Lore card

An example of the business card of William Lore in his role as the Hong Kong representative of the Sun Life Assurance Co. of Canada. He was a valued link to Canadian naval ships calling at Hong Kong and provided liaison with local officials.

Wm Lore card

The reverse side of business card with his contact information.

After the Second World War (and particularly during the Korean War) RCN ships regularly visited Hong Kong. It has been rumoured that he was the Canadian Navy‘s ‘eyes and ears’ in Hong Kong for a number of years after the Second World War.

Sir Gordon Ying–Sheun Wu

Gordon Wu

Sir Gordon Ying–Sheun Wu

Gordon Wu was living in New Jersey at the time of his recruitment into the navy. He is one of the founders of the Hopewell group and is the Chairman of Hopewell Holdings Ltd and Hopewell Highway Infrastructure Ltd, both companies are listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. Hopewell’s major businesses include PRC infrastructure, property letting, hotel operation and property construction. Sir Gordon graduated from Princeton University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering. Sir Gordon received Honorary Doctorate Degrees from Hong Kong Polytechnic University, University of Strathclyde UK and University of Edinburgh UK.

He was appointed as a Naval Cadet (UNTD) RCN(R) (With seniority dated 02/01/1954). He served in HMCS Chippawa for UNTD 1953–1954. (He was released.) He is presemed to have been commissioned as an A/Sub–Lieutenant RCN(R) on graduation. He has received a number of important decorations including the GBS; the KCMG; the Gold Bauhinia Star by HKSAR (2004); the Chevalier de L’Ordre de la Couronne (Belgium) 1985 and the Officer de L’Ordre de la Couronne (Belgium) 2007.

The University Naval Training Division (UNTD) was a reserve officer training organization which provided a path to commission for university students. One interesting aspect of it was that students of British Commonwealth origins were able to apply. Officer Cadets from a number of countries were accepted and the first African, Asian, Caribbean and other origins were able to enter the navy opening a path to a more balanced and multi–cultural ship’s company.

Sir Gordon has donated $118 million to Princeton University and made significant contributions to universities in Hong Kong, the University of Manitoba and the University of Winnipeg. Before Sir Gordon left for North America, his father, the son of a migrant pig farmer, foresaw the expansion of automotive transportation in China and launched Hong Kong’s first taxi service. Upon returning home from his studies, Sir Gordon showed exquisite business acumen, expanding the family business portfolio to include hospitality and infrastructure interests. This inspired Sir Gordon to create Hopewell Holdings Limited, a Hong Kong based company that has helped modernize China, Hong Kong, the Philippines and Indonesia, by building bridges, superhighways and power stations.


To quote from this article please cite:

MacFarlane, John (2015) Chinese–Canadian Naval Officers Nauticapedia.ca 2015. http://nauticapedia.ca/Gallery/Chinese_Naval_Officers.php

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