Joseph Germain Pilon was born in 1920 and raised in the small Ottawa Valley town of L’Orignal, Ontario, Canada. He was a member of the Royal Canadian Naval Volunteer Reserve. (V49934). He served aboard the Canadian “Flower” Class Corvette, H.M.C.S. Alberni (K 103) which took part in escorting many North American merchant marine convoys to England. During the landings in Normandy, the Alberni took part in Operation Neptune which provided escort for ships transporting men, munitions, supplies and equipment in support of the Allies offensive actions against German troops in France.

On August 21, 1944, just before noon, the Alberni was struck by a German torpedo near the engine room. In no more than 30 seconds the H.M.C.S. Alberni had sunk beneath the surface taking 59 men (4 officers and 55 ratings) to their watery graves. Three officers and 28 men survived. Joseph Germain Pilon’s body was not recovered from its watery grave and he likely remains entombed in the remains of the Alberni.