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Keith Smith 53B
10 January 2018
Loved husband of Marion and father of Gregor and Julian on 10th January 2018.
Peter Squire 89A
19 February 2018
Air Chief Marshal Sir Peter Squire GCB, DFC, AFC, DL, FRAeS
ACM Sir Peter Squire joined the Royal Air Force as a Flight Cadet member of No.89 Entry at the RAF College, Cranwell. He was commissioned in August 1966.
In the first years of the most distinguished career that followed, he learned the skills of ground attack flying Hunters on No.20 Squadron in Singapore before serving as an advanced flying instructor at RAF Valley. There he continued to fly the Hunter, an association that culminated in the achievement of first place in the 1972 Wright Jubilee Competition that selected the best aerobatic pilot in Flying Training Command.
In 1975 Sir Peter converted to the Harrier and joined No.3(F) Squadron in RAF Germany as a Flight Commander. After a successful tour that earned him an Air Force Cross he assumed command of No.1(F) Squadron which he was to lead with great courage and admirable determination in the Falklands War. Flying from the entirely new environment of an aircraft carrier (HMS Hermes) the Squadron was principally involved in ground attack operations using for the first time in combat retard bombs, cluster bombs and laser guided bombs. Sir Peter led from the front flying 24 missions, and surviving battle damage to his aircraft on a number of occasions and a crash landing on a newly laid airstrip at Port San Carlos.
Two months after the war he returned to the Falklands and on his first sortie from Port Stanley Airfield he was forced to eject after an engine failure. A Sea King helicopter returned him to dry land having picked him up from the harbour.
The quality of Sir Peter’s leadership and his courage during the Falklands campaign were recognised with the award of the Distinguished Flying Cross. But such distinction only partly reflected the steadfastness of his personal example that never faltered no matter the hair raising scrapes that hall-marked his tour in command of No.(1F) Squadron. His professionalism, his calmness under pressure, his congeniality and his concern for others earned him respect and popularity in equal measure.
So no surprise that within the next eleven years Sir Peter was to advance in rank from Wing Commander to Air Marshal through a succession of high profile appointments in the RAF chain of command and MOD central staffs. His ascent to air rank was made at a time when the Armed Services were enduring cuts in defence spending while having to meet an increasing number of operational commitments.
Sir Peter’s own operational experience, unique in the highest ranks of the Service at that time, and exposure to political pressures emanating principally from the Treasury joined together to forge a formidable identity – one that was well capable of accommodating the many demands made on his leadership when, with a certain and justified inevitability, he was appointed Chief of the Air Staff in April 2000.
Sir Peter’s death, so sudden and so unexpected, has robbed the Service of the wisdom of an elder statesman whose concern for the wellbeing of the RAF never flagged after his departure from active service in August 2003. Many from within and without the ranks of the RAF will mourn his passing and extend their heartfelt sympathy to his wife, Carolyn, and their three sons, Christopher, Richard and Edward.
ACM Sir Richard Edward Johns, GCB, KCVO, CBE
Peter Hunwick 65C
8 January 2018
Peter died peacefully on 8 January 2018, aged 84. Much loved father of Robert and Natasha, and husband of Tania. A thanksgiving service will be held at St Lawrence's, Hungerford, Berks on 28th February at 11am. All inquiries to Dianne Mackinder Funeral Services
27 February 2018
Jan Atkinson 47C
8 March 2018
Allan Loveland 51D
Allan Stuart, Squadron Leader (ret'd). Sadly passed away on 8th March 2018 at home aged 88 years, following an illness. Beloved husband of Valerie and dearly loved father of Giles. Cremation Service on Wednesday 4th April, 1.30 p.m. at Chelmsford South Crematorium. All enquiries to Bakers Funeral Directors please. Tel: 01245 221100.
Ian Weddle 76B
2 April 2018
Peter Le Cheminant 1-39A
10 April 2018
Air Chief Marshal Sir Peter Le Cheminant, who has died aged 97, saw active service in the Second World War as a bomber pilot, for which he was awarded a DFC; he later flew on postwar operations in Korea, where he acquired a Bar to his DFC, as well as in Malaya and during the Indonesian Confrontation.
Le Cheminant, a caring man with a deep affection and loyalty for the RAF, retired from the service in August 1979. A few months later he was appointed Lieutenant Governor of Guernsey, becoming the only native Guernseyman to hold the post. Immensely popular, he enjoyed the social life on the island, where he was known for his generosity, sense of humour and the twinkle in his eye.
23 May 2018
14 May 2018
8 May 2018
2 May 2018
Family, Flying, Sport and France were the main features of the life of Tony Dawes. To fly had been Tony's boyhood ambition and he achieved it via Cranwell as a Flight Cadet in 54 Entry. After graduation he flew fighters, from Vampires and F86 Sabres to Javelins, and was a QFI on the Vampire and Jet Provost. His connection with Cranwell was extended by an appointment as Flight Commander of Junior Entries and, later, as a Squadron Commander in the Flying Wing. Of course, there were a number of staff appointments to be endured but fluency in French gave Tony two very enjoyable posts in France, including one as RAF Liaison Officer with the French Air Defence Command. Tony's love of France led to many holidays there and the purchase of an apartment in the south.
Excelling at sport from schooldays, Tony won colours for cricket and squash as a Flight Cadet and was a superb gymnast. At Rugby Fives he was Public Schools Champion and later All-England Champion. Moving on to golf, Tony's participation in sport continued throughout his life until prevented by illness, and his attendance at Old Boys' days at his school was viewed by some with mixed feelings because of his reputation for always winning the sporting events against the school or in competition with other fathers.
Blessed with and devoted to a loving family, Tony experienced tragedy in the loss to cancer of his wife, Norma, but later found great joy from his marriage to Yvonne, who had lost her husband to the same disease which eventually took Tony as well.
After retiring from the RAF Tony worked as Administrative Services Manager at the Royal Society of Medicine and finally retired to Bexhill-on-Sea. Always good company, he is missed not only by his family but by his surviving friends from happy days at Cranwell.
Ian Weddle arrived at the RAF College in January 1957 from the Royal High School Edinburgh and soon found himself to be a rugby-playing member of 'B' Squadron No 76 Entry. He generally kept out of (too much) mischief and, ahead of the more formal parades, developed a 'buddy' system with one of his 'B' Squadron comtemporaries to check that each was properly dressed for the occasion. As soon as he was allowed to have a car at the College Ian duly appeared with a fine, dark blue Ford V8 Pilot which was the envy of those with less impressive vehicles. Certainly, the car could put up a very fine turn of speed along the 'Leadenham straight'. On graduation and by special selection Ian's first tour was on Shackletons – No 38 Squadron at RAF Luqa, Malta – as co-pilot to the then Flt Lt, later AVM, Andrew Roberts. It was noted that, while flying, Ian had a propensity to fall asleep as soon as the other pilot in the aircraft uttered the immortal words 'I have control'. In lieu of the normal 3 holiday railway warrants a year, those serving in Malta during the 1960s were allowed a return flight to either Tripoli or Sicily. On one such trip to the latter, he and two others hired a nearly-new Fiat 500 to facilitate some sight-seeing. At the end of the 10 day holiday the car appeared to be 'very old'. It was while in Malta that Ian met and married Lynn, a WRNS officer, with whom he shared a love of horses. Subsequent tours of duty included qualifying as a QFI and as Officer Commanding RAF Salalah in Oman in 1968-69, a time when the base was regularly under attack by the Dhofar rebels from the nearby jebel. Apparently, diving for the relative safety of a nearby slit-trench was a regular occurrence. Later in his career Ian was a QFI squadron commander at RAF Oakington, training plots destined for multi-engined aircraft, where he had a reputation for being particularly efficient and energetic. On retirement, Ian and Lynn, who survives him, lived in Helpringham, Lincolnshire. He was someone who was very highly regarded by his many friends and colleagues, who certainly greatly valued the friendship of others and who much enjoyed Old Cranwellian Reunions.
Tony was the boss of IV in 1978/79 and then the Harrier OCU in 1983/4.
8 July 2018
LEGH-SMITH Jeremy Railton, Group Captain (ret'd) died on 24th June 2018, aged 78, after a long struggle with Alzheimer's disease. Loving husband to Wendy, devoted father to Mark and Richard and proud grandfather to Nick, Hannah, Emma and Jonny. He will be greatly missed by many others. Private cremation. A thanksgiving service will be held at the Church of St Paul, Hammoon, Sturminster Newton, DT10 2DB, on Friday 3rd August, at 2pm. No flowers by request. All friends welcome.
Published in The Times on July 14, 2018
28 June 2018
24 June 2018
14 July 2018