IX Commandant RRMC: 1963 – 1965 / XXVI Commandant RMC: 1967 – 1970
(Researched by E3161 Victoria Edwards)
2576 Commodore William “Willy” Prine Hayes (RMC ’37) was the 26th Commandant of RMC and the 9th Commandant of RRMC. He was born in Swift Current, Saskatchewan in December 1919. He was an Officer Cadet at Royal Military College of Canada in 1937. He served as a Naval Cadet, RCN (Special Entry No. 49) in 1939. He was a Midshipman, with the Royal Canadian Navy in 1940. He was assigned to HMS Liverpool in 1940 for training and torpedoed in HMS Liverpool with the bow being blown off her south of Crete. He was assigned to HMS York for training and torpedoed in HMS York at Suda Bay. He was posted to HMS Isis for training in 1941 and the HMS Issis was hit by a bomb during the Syrian Campaign. He was posted to HMS Valiant for training in 1941, then to Naden in 1942. He served as First Lieutenant on HMCS Iroquois (Tribal Class Destroyer – C89) in 1942. He was awarded Mention in Despatches as per Canada Gazette of 20 June 1945 and London Gazette of 14 November 1944. He was posted to Stadacona in 1945. He served as First Lieutenant on HMCS Nootka in 1946. He was posted to HMS Excellent for RN Long Gunnery School in 1946. he performed Gunnery Duties on HMCS Magnificent in 1948. He was posted to Stadacona for Gunnery School in 1949. He attended the RN Staff College Course in 1951. He was assigned to Niobe as Staff Officer (Gunnery) in 1951. He served as Commanding Officer of HMCS Cayuga (Tribal Class Destroyer – 218) from 23 February 1953 to 31 December 1954 (Korean War Service). He was promoted Commander in January 1954. He was posted to Naden as Executive Officer of RCN Barracks in 1955. He was assigned to Naval HQ as Director of Naval Gunnery in 1956. He served at Naval HQ as Director Surface and Air Warfare 1957. He took the Naval Command Course for Senior Foreign Officers at United States Naval War College in 1958. He was the First Commanding Officer of HMCS Columbia (II) (Restigouche Class Destroyer Escort – 260) from 7 November 1959 to 25 April 1961. He was promoted Captain in 1961 and made Commander Fifth Canadian Escort Squadron. He was posted to National Defence HQ (NDHQ) with Joint Missile Defence Staff in 1961. He served at NDHQ with Directorate of Strategic Studies in 1962. He served as the 9th Commandant, Royal Roads Military College from 1963 to 1965. He was Commander Fourth Canadian Escort Squadron in 1965. He was posted to National Defence College of Canada (Course 20) in 1966. He was promoted Commodore in 1967 and served as 10th Commandant, Royal Military College of Canada from 1967-1973. He was made Honorary AdC to Governor General in 1967. He was Commander Canadian Flotilla Atlantic and Senior Officer Afloat in 1970. He served as Commandant Canadian Forces Staff College in Toronto in 1971 and retired in 1973.