Jessie Coade

Newspaper columnist Jessie Coade interviewing a sailor in 1941. She will be honoured Friday at a gathering on HMCS Sackville. (Courtesy HMCS Sackville)

Newspaper columnist Jessie Coade, who chronicled the day-to-day happenings of sailors during the Second World War, will be honoured Friday.

Coade interviewed the sailors that arrived in Halifax on board naval ships, penning the tri-weekly column Messdeck News, which ran on the Halifax Mail from 1940 to 1945. Coade was nicknamed Messdeck Annie by the sailors.

Her son is CBC meteorologist Peter Coade. He says his mother got the idea for the column when riding the streetcar in Halifax and overhearing sailors talk about stories they couldn't tell because of secrecy rules.

She managed to talk her newspaper, and then the navy, into letting her on board ships.

"At that time you don’t get permission to go aboard navy ships, especially at wartime," Peter Coade said. "But she did get permission.

"As a matter of fact I think she was probably the only reporter that was given this permission by the navy to go aboard all their ships that come in."

A gathering to honour Jessie Coade will take place on board the HMCS Sackville Friday at 11 a.m.