Military (& related) obituaries

I don’t think I’m mistaken, but didn’t Powel put his hand up and say the Int about the WMD in Iraq had been wrong ?
If he did, that’s the sign of a great diplomat!
He may well have done - after the event.
He most certainly would not have played a leading role as a general if he had known it was based on a lie.
 
He may well have done - after the event.
He most certainly would not have played a leading role as a general if he had known it was based on a lie.

Why not?
 
He was US Secretary of State when helping to build the case for the 2003 attack on Iraq, not a serving general.
So he was - soldier turned Statesman.
Still would not have taken his country to war again on a known lie.
That is more a politicians trick.
 
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He had fought from Platoon Commander up to General and had nothing to prove to himself or anyone from a military point of view.
As SoS - a decision NOT to go to war again would have been the right one - if the Int had been good.
Whilst the ultimate decision is the Presidents - Powells opinion of Go / No go was probably the same as most people - too risky not to.
In the US some politicians may be swayed by the financial backing of Industry - but he was never a politician.
 

Colonel David Storrie, Royal Marine aviator who undertook perilous missions in the Far East – obituary​

He often had to land through clearings in the jungle canopy, using maps that sometimes had little more information than ‘Here be dragons’
Colonel David Storrie

Colonel David Storrie
Colonel David Storrie, who has died aged 82, reintroduced flying into the Royal Marines, and achieved many “firsts” during his career.
In 1961, when the Royal Marines saw their opportunity to resume one of their previous roles as aviators in the Fleet Air Arm, Storrie was among the first volunteers. He was awarded his wings in May 1962 and joined 845 Naval Air Squadron flying Wessex helicopters from the commando carrier Albion, which sailed later that year for a two-year commission in the Far East Fleet.
In the next few weeks Storrie landed 41 Commando in Aden and 40 Commando in Kenya before crossing the Indian Ocean to Singapore when Konfrontasi, the Indonesian assault on the newly formed Federation of Malaysia, began.
On December 14, Storrie landed Marines on the racecourse at Kuching, on Borneo, to assist the civilian population during floods, then operations seamlessly morphed into fighting Indonesian incursions. This caused Albion’s captain to cancel Christmas “due to operational commitments”, but after Storrie and his fellow officer, David Rowe, were invited to the senior rates’ mess, events led to their wine bills being stopped.


In the New Year, 845 NAS deployed to Sabah and Sarawak, and for the next 16 months Storrie flew his single-engined Wessex in support of Gurkhas, RM Commandos and the SAS in the most testing of conditions.
They endured 40-degree temperatures at high latitude, refuelling by hand pump from primitive landing sites cut out of the jungle. They landed through clearings where the jungle canopy was 250ft high and Storrie was unable to see the right-hand side of the aircraft, carefully calculating the pay-off between range and payload. He and his aircrewman often operated on their own. Maps, too, were rudimentary, Storrie recalled, often with little more information than “Here be dragons”.
Once he was forced to carry out an engine-off landing; on another occasion he provided airborne fire support for an attack on an enemy camp, and fired – for the first time in British usage – the SS.11 air-to-surface missile which he had earlier spent six weeks being trained on in Paris.
For his outstanding operational flying, Storrie was Mentioned in Despatches.
Storrie had joined the Royal Marines in 1957 after a failed attempt to join the Royal Australian Navy. Still under training, he joined 45 Commando in Cyprus during the Emergency there – learning in B Troop the importance of the relationship between a troop subaltern and experienced Senior NCOs, who guided him as the 19-year-old found his feet. On the unit’s return to Malta he rescued a man drowning offshore, for which he was awarded the Ralph Garrett Memorial Award.
Storrie in Borneo

Storrie in Borneo
On returning to the UK after flying with 845 NAS, Storrie and Rowe were selected to fly helicopters into the gardens of Buckingham Palace as part of the Royal Marines Tercentenary Royal Review.
In 1966 he became a qualified helicopter instructor and converted to the Sioux light helicopter. Storrie’s compelling personality, allied to his very evident experience, ensured that a majority of his pupils graduated with confidence.
He next commanded 3 Commando Brigade Air Squadron in Singapore, where once again his dynamism and professionalism ensured that the squadron dealt efficiently with a wide range of routine and emergency tasks, including the evacuation of an injured Royal Marine from the casing of a submarine off the coast of Malaysia.
In 1972, at the height of the Troubles in Northern Ireland, Storrie was the youngest and most junior company commander of M Company, 42 Commando, under the legendary Jeremy Moore. During two demanding Belfast tours, Storrie showed his ebullient, enthusiastic and positive character. As a senior officer recalled: “An exemplary Royal Marine. Very fit, he was a natural leader with high personal and military standards, being tough and demanding when necessary, yet compassionate and sensitive to the needs of the individual Marine.”
Promoted major in December 1974, he attended the US Marine Corps Command and Staff College in Quantico, Virginia, before returning to Belfast as second-in-command of 41 Commando. In 1979 he assumed command of Royal Marines Poole, a diverse establishment comprising the Special Boat Service, the Landing Craft Branch, RM technical training, as well as Army personnel specialising in naval gunfire support. Little escaped Storrie’s scrutiny, but he watched with envy and frustration as his friends and much of his command went to war in 1982.
In 1984 Storrie was appointed OBE. His career culminated in his appointment, the first for a RM officer, as Director of Naval Physical Training and Sport.
In retirement he joined Holts’ Tours as a battlefield guide. Perfectly balanced by the calmness of his wife Linda, and by her constant smile and kindness, he became one of Holts’ most popular guides, building a following who chose to travel with the Storries wherever they went.
He had met Linda Cole, an air hostess based at Gatwick, while undergoing flying training with British Airways at Redhill. They married in 1963, and she survives him with their two sons, one of whom joined the Royal Marines; both are successful gold and diamond mining engineers.
Colonel David Storrie, born November 16 1938, died August 21 2021
 

Sir Archie Lamb, fighter pilot and diplomat who served as Ambassador to Norway and Kuwait and established himself as a leading expert on the oil industry – obituary​

He survived for eight days on a lifeboat after his ship was sunk and went on to become the first FCO clerk to rise to ambassador
Sir Archie Lamb

Sir Archie Lamb CREDIT: Uppa.co.uk
Sir Archie Lamb, who has died a few days before his 100th birthday, joined the Foreign Office aged 17 as a filing clerk and retired from it 43 years later as Ambassador to Norway, the first of its clerical staff to reach such a height as the FO began basing promotion on talent rather than privilege.
Over a career punctuated by eight days in a lifeboat after the torpedoing of his troopship and service with the RAF which earned him a DFC, he became one of the FCO’s leading experts on oil.
Lamb served in, among other places, Oman, Bahrain, Kuwait and Abu Dhabi, and on the FCO’s “oil desk”, before being appointed Ambassador in Oslo in 1978 at the urging of James Callaghan.
A visit there convinced the prime minister that Britain and Norway were getting at cross purposes over offshore development. The countries had agreed a North Sea “median line” and were developing fields that straddled it, but tensions had arisen over who should provide equipment and services to the Norwegian sector. Britain saw it as a natural outlet for its exports, Norway to develop its own offshore industries.


Moved to Oslo from his embassy in Kuwait, Lamb tried to stall intergovernmental contacts while he investigated the situation, but could not prevent a visiting junior minister infuriating his Norwegian counterpart. He managed to iron out their differences over a quiet lunch.
He put together a “political overview” of offshore issues to be accepted by both governments, ran it past the Norwegian energy minister, then secured approval from the Foreign Secretary David Owen. Lamb then refocused the Oslo embassy to match the new objectives.
Albert Thomas Lamb (he gained the nickname “Archie” in the RAF) was born in Swansea on October 23 1921, the eldest child of Reginald Lamb, a commercial traveller gassed in the First World War, and the former Violet Haynes. One of his teachers at Swansea Grammar School was Dylan Thomas’s father.
Albert Lamb senior became too ill to work, so instead of trying for Oxford as his headmaster intended, his son was entered at 16 for the Civil Service clerical class examination. Wanting to study languages, he joined the FO, starting in its registry in December 1938.
Lamb volunteered for the RAF when war broke out, but was not called up until early 1941. He underwent pilot training in Southern Rhodesia, receiving his wings in September 1942. He sailed for home from Cape Town in the unescorted 20,045-ton liner Oronsay, with 50 other airmen, 20 rescued British seamen and eight gunners, plus a cargo of copper and oranges.
Early on October 9, Oronsay was sunk 500 miles off Freetown, Sierra Leone, by the Italian submarine Archimede. Four torpedoes were fired; the first, which killed five stokers, blew Lamb out of his bunk. He left the ship – via a rope from the deck to a lifeboat – in his RAF jacket and pyjama trousers, leaving all his possessions, including the engagement ring he had bought.
Lamb in 1984

Lamb in 1984 CREDIT: UPPA/Photoshot
Oronsay sank at 8.05am, leaving 406 survivors in 17 lifeboats, with some water, biscuits and pemmican. The captain organised them to row and sail to Freetown, but after three days a violent storm scattered the flotilla.
On the fourth day, sharks were circling Lamb’s group of five boats. On the fifth, one man tried to throw himself overboard; on the sixth, thirst took a grip. On the seventh, a flying boat brought survival packages.
After eight days and 20 hours, Lamb’s group of 261 survivors were rescued by the destroyer Brilliant. The corvette Armeria picked up a further 61, while 26, including the ship’s surgeon (the Antarctic explorer James McIlroy), were rescued by the Vichy French aviso Dumont d’Urville, and interned at Dakar.
Lamb was transferred in Freetown to a “survivors’ ship”; back in Glasgow he was given two weeks’ leave and £20 for a new uniform.
He joined 184 Squadron, flying rocket-firing Hurricanes and converting to Typhoons early in 1944. He flew two missions from Westhampnett, West Sussex, on D-Day, his squadron knocking out several German tanks near Caen.
He was soon flying from makeshift strips in Normandy. On July 27 Churchill visited in a captured Fieseler Storch, followed by the Air Minister Sir Archibald Sinclair – who did not impress Lamb – and Ernest Hemingway.
After supporting US forces resisting a German counter-attack at Mortain, he transferred to 245 Squadron as a flight commander. They moved to Antwerp to support operations at Arnhem, but bad weather limited them to four attacks on German positions. Lamb then led attacks on new Messerschmitt Me 262 jet fighters on the ground; for all these activities he was awarded his DFC.
Early in December he was rested after 106 sorties. He was posted as a Typhoon instructor, then a glider trainer for the invasion of Japan, and ended his service in June 1946 as adjutant at RAF Membury.
Lamb went back to the registry, then in 1947 was posted as archivist to the Embassy in Rome. Two years later he had to type and deliver on a Sunday a Note informing the Italian foreign minister that sterling had been devalued.
He next spent three years in Bucharest. Charged with evacuating the “remaining British subjects living in penury in Roumania”, he managed to get 40 out. For this he was invested with the MBE at Buckingham Palace – making up for having received his DFC in the post.
Back at the FO in 1953 as an administrator, Lamb recruited James Craig, later its leading Arabist, as chief instructor for Mecas, Britain’s “spy school” in the Lebanon; he also learnt Arabic himself.
In October 1954 he was appointed a private secretary to the Foreign Secretary. Anthony Eden annoyed him by refusing to lock up confidential papers each evening, saying there was no risk of their being stolen.
From 1955 to 1957 – spanning the Suez intervention which he considered a disastrous mistake – Lamb himself studied at Mecas. He was then promoted to the diplomatic ranks proper.
Lamb's 2003 memoir

Lamb's 2003 memoir
Lamb first served in the Gulf from 1957 to 1961 (before oil was struck there) as first secretary to the political resident in Bahrain, and later commercial secretary. When he urged British industry to export to the Gulf, Land Rover told him they were producing enough vehicles already, the car makers refused to install air conditioning, and the woollen merchants refused to believe sheikhs would buy warm clothes.
After a few months at the FO looking after Muscat and Oman, Lamb moved in 1961 to the “oil desk”. After a short spell in Kuwait, in 1965 he became political agent for Abu Dhabi – Britain’s diplomatic representative and advisor on defence and foreign affairs to the Ruler, Sheikh Shakhbut.
Lamb inherited a house known as “dysentery hall”; a special sitting room had to be built for his wife as she had to retire to her bedroom when Arab males visited; a governess was accommodated behind a “purdah wall”, as Abu Dhabi had no school until his wife started one.
Oil revenues had started to flow, but Shakhbut, who had ruled since 1928, would not spend them, and Lamb could not persuade him to make any reforms. While Lamb was home on leave in the summer of 1966, Shakhbut was overthrown by his brother Zayed, who immediately accepted reforms, including an Investment Board. Lamb left Abu Dhabi in 1968 with buildings starting to rise; in two years the expat population had increase from 85 to too many to invite to his Christmas party.
In November 1967 the FO minister Goronwy Roberts came to reassure the Ruler that Britain would maintain its “special position” in the Gulf. Two months later, he was back to say British protection would end in 1971 after 150 years. Six of the seven “trucial states” formed the United Arab Emirates, with Abu Dhabi in the lead.
Lamb next spent six years in the FCO’s Inspectorate, from 1973 to 1974 as chief inspector. The unit’s main purpose was to keep down the costs of overseas posts consistent with “policy and operational requirements, local circumstances and the good morale of the staff”. His powers of diplomacy tested to the limit, Lamb concentrated on reviving commonsense practices dropped after management studies.
In 1974 he was appointed Ambassador to Kuwait, finding it a “disaster area” for British exports. “The British stood back politely and let the others rush in,” he noted. “We are inventors, not salesmen.”
Wealth was surging into the Gulf after the 1973 oil price hike, and Kuwait was now defending itself, with a British military liaison team. Lamb oversaw the sale of Chieftain tanks and six cargo ships to Kuwait; Govan Shipbuilders spurned a first approach because their order book was full, but Lamb stopped the order going to Korea.
Lamb moved to Oslo at the start of 1978, and retired to Dorset in November 1981. Sir Michael Palliser, head of the Diplomatic Service, wrote to him: “Your rise from clerical officer to ambassador has been an inspiration.”
He became a director of the British National Oil Corporation until the Thatcher government wound it up in 1982, and later of British Shipbuilders and the National Bank of Kuwait International.
After the US-British invasion of Iraq in 2003, Lamb joined 51 other former British diplomats in condemning both the intervention and the West’s support for Israel’s hardline government. When critics suggested he was parti pris because of his commercial links with Kuwait, he retorted: “My entire career has been about protecting and promoting Britain. British interests will only be attended to by a settlement of the Israeli-Palestine issue, not by making it worse, as Mr Bush and Mr Sharon are doing.”
Lamb published four books: A Long Way from Swansea (2003) – with a foreword from Callaghan – Abu Dhabi 1965-68 (2003), The Last Voyage of SS Oronsay (2004) and The World Moves On (2015). He was appointed MBE in 1953, CMG in 1974 and KBE in 1979.
Archie Lamb married Christina Wilkinson in 1944. She predeceased him, and he is survived by their son Robin (Ambassador in Bahrain from 2003-06) and two daughters.
Archie Lamb, born October 23 1921, died October 19 2021
 

Air Chief Marshal Sir John Rogers, Cold War fighter pilot who later oversaw procurement of all military aircraft and associated weapon systems – obituary​

He also had a passion for motorsport and took part in events at Silverstone and Brands Hatch, his cars including Aston Martins and a Darracq
John Rogers

John Rogers: strict but knowledgeable and fair
Air Chief Marshal Sir John Rogers, who has died aged 93, was a former aircraft apprentice and Cold War fighter pilot who rose to serve on the Air Force Board of the Defence Council.
Rogers became Controller Aircraft (CA) in the MoD in January 1983, a job in which he was responsible for the procurement of all military aircraft and associated weapon systems – a complex process involving, political, industrial and financial interests.
A new aircraft type could not be used by the forces without a CA Release, which Rogers would issue once all the necessary system testing had been satisfactorily carried out. CA was also responsible for post design services on in-service aircraft.
Rogers worked closely with industry and the MoD’s procurement executive. He met regularly with all his project directors and conducted individual reviews with them every quarter. He was regarded as strict but very knowledgeable and fair by all his staff.

Among many other projects at that time, he had the overall responsibility for the procurement of the Tornado and Hawk aircraft, and the in-service support for the Phantom and Buccaneer aircraft.
John Robson Rogers was born in Brentwood, Essex on January 11 1928. He was educated at Brentwood School and in 1944 joined the RAF as an aircraft apprentice.
For three years he trained as a ground radio fitter. He finished near the top of the order of merit and was awarded a cadetship at the RAF College Cranwell where he completed his training as a pilot. He was commissioned in April 1950 and began training as a night fighter pilot.
Rogers’ long association with fighter aircraft commenced when he joined 141 Squadron, which was equipped with the Mosquito. After six months he headed for Egypt where he joined 219 Squadron, based at Kabrit in the Canal Zone, and where he became the squadron’s tactics instructor.
With regular detachments to Malta, Cyprus, Libya and Iraq, three months of the year was spent away from his base on the shores of the Great Bitter Lakes. Before leaving Egypt, the Mosquitos were replaced by the night-fighter version of the twin-engine Meteor jet fighter.
On his return to Britain after three years in Egypt, he joined the All Weather Development Squadron of the Central Fighter Establishment. The Meteor was still operational but was being replaced by the delta-wing Gloster Javelin, and Rogers and his fellow aircrew were responsible for devising and developing all-weather and night fighting tactics.
By 1956 he was a highly experienced and accomplished fighter pilot and was sent to the USAF’s Tyndall Air Force base in Florida for three years to train pilots and weapons system operators on all-weather and night fighters.
His return to Britain in January 1960 saw him appointed to command 56 Squadron at Wattisham in Suffolk. The squadron was flying the Hunter, but by the end of the year it began to receive the new supersonic Lightning aircraft. Fully equipped by the following spring, the squadron carried out a number of long-range flights pioneering the use of air-to-air refuelling.
After serving as the personal staff officer to the Commander-in-Chief Fighter Command, Rogers took command of the Air Fighting Development Squadron at the Central Fighter Establishment. The latest version of the Lightning was entering service and Rogers flew many trial flights.
In early 1965, the then Labour Government cancelled a number of projects including the replacement for the RAF’s long-serving Hunter. It was decided to procure the US-built Phantom powered by Rolls-Royce Spey engines.
With his previous experience of service with the USAF, and his wide experience of fighter operations, Rogers left for Washington in April 1965 to be the RAF Phantom Procurement Manager, a post he held for almost three years, to oversee an initial order for 200 aircraft, later substantially reduced.
In February 1968, he became the station commander at RAF Coningsby, the base selected for the first Phantom units. He first oversaw the considerable work programme to prepare the former V-bomber base for Phantom operations. The first aircraft arrived direct from the US in August and flying training began almost immediately. By the time Rogers relinquished command, two squadrons and a training unit were operational.
Rogers, right, with his navigator and their Mosquito night fighter

Rogers, right, with his navigator and their Mosquito night fighter
In August 1970 he moved to HQ 38 Group as group captain operations, the parent group for the Phantom squadrons, in addition to other front-line squadrons. On promotion to air commodore, he served as a director of operational requirements in MoD.
Rogers returned to the RAF College Cranwell in January 1974 to take up the post of Deputy Commandant. He was also responsible for the newly established Department of Air Warfare, which provided specialist courses in air weapons, navigation and electronic warfare.
After attending the 1976 Royal College of Defence Studies course, he was promoted to air vice-marshal to become the Director General of Organisation in MoD. In November 1979 he became the Air Officer Commanding Training Units, which gave him responsibility for supervising all aspects of air and ground training in the RAF. A proud moment came when he presented his son David with his pilot’s wings.
Rogers was appointed to the Air Force Board in July 1981 as the Air Member for Supply and Organisation his responsibilities including engineering, equipment and RAF organisation and the RAF Regiment. After 18 months in post, and promotion to air chief marshal, he remained on the Air Force Board to take up the appointment of Controller Aircraft.
He retired from the RAF in March 1986 having been appointed CBE (1971) and KCB (1982). He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society in 1983.
During his RAF career he maintained his long-standing interest in motorsport, and in the late 1980s took part in many events at Silverstone, Brands Hatch, Cadwell, and Donington Park. By this time, he had acquired LM6, a 1931 Aston Martin Team car, and regularly featured in races in the same event as his two sons who took it in turns to drive their second Aston Martin Le Mans.
Rogers with his wife Elspeth driving his Darracq 4 in the Brighton Run

Rogers with his wife Elspeth driving his Darracq 4 in the Brighton Run
His motoring hobby eventually turned into a second career and in 1986 he became a director of David Wickens’ British Car Auctions, which encouraged him to renew collecting. His daughter’s wedding became a spur to buy a 1923 Rolls Royce. His job took him all over the world to different motoring events, and he regularly competed in classic car trials.
His involvement in the organisation of the Brighton Run led him to take part driving an Orient Buckboard, which he described as, “Not my shrewdest choice. We never got to Brighton. My sons picked me up and we decided to get a serious motor car.” He acquired a 1904 Darracq.
Rogers considered himself to be a “rebuilder” rather than a “restorer”. He acknowledged that he was no purist and commented: “I like things original but it is not a fetish. Cars are for driving. I like to drive them and I like something to do with them. That’s why I like the RAC’s three classic car runs.”
In 1989 he became the executive chairman of RAC Motor Sports Association, a position he held for 10 years before being made a Life Vice-President. In 1995 he became a member of the Federation International d’Automobile (FIA) World Motor Sport Council, a role which took him to many international Formula 1 motorsports events as governing official and UK representative.
In 1955 John Rogers married Elspeth Campbell. She survives him with their two sons and two daughters.
Air Chief Marshal Sir John Rogers, born January 11 1928, died October 11 2021
 

Colonel Alastair Campbell, accomplished Arabist and soldier who served as military attaché in Iraq during a tense three years – obituary​

At a St Andrew’s Day Ball in 2006 Campbell found that the dance-loving Kurds took to Scottish reels with exuberance
October 2021 • 6:54am

Alastair Campbell in Oman

Campbell in Oman
Colonel Alastair Campbell, who has died aged 69, brought style, charm and a great sense of fun to a distinguished career in soldiering.
In June 2004, Campbell moved to the British Embassy in Baghdad as military attaché. It was a crucial time. Direct rule by the US-led Coalition Provisional Authority had ended and a caretaker Interim Government had assumed the responsibility and authority of the state.
Campbell was an accomplished Arabist, and with his language skills he worked his way very effectively into the Iraqi MoD. He would wander along the corridors of power listening to what was being said in the sure knowledge that the Iraqis would not know that he was almost fluent in their language.
On a visit to the naval base at Umm Qasr, he came to a lonely outpost where he engaged the sentry in conversation in the same informal manner that he would have used with one of his soldiers. It turned out that the post had never been visited by an Iraqi officer. Campbell learned much about the morale and practices at the base.
Campbell as defence attaché

Campbell as defence attaché
The average length of a posting was 12 months, punctuated by breaks every two months. He was in Iraq for three years, a most exacting test of physical and mental stamina, but it enabled him to build trust among American and Iraqi colleagues.


It also made him an invaluable source of advice, comfort and wisdom for the stream of British officials unused to living under rocket and mortar fire.
In the sometimes unavoidably brutal conditions, he retained an unshakeable grip on civilisation and culture; it was sensitively worn but ready to share if he thought a colleague needed it.
Campbell piping in combat kit

Campbell piping in combat kit
Alastair James Calthrop Campbell, the younger son of Lord Campbell of Croy, MC, PC, DL, and a former Secretary of State for Scotland, was born in London on January 6 1952. At his preparatory school he excelled at sport and he went on to Eton, where he developed a passion for poetry and modern languages.
He played the piano, sang, acted and learnt to play the bagpipes. He was also a fine athlete and played for the first XV at rugby. Later in life, he added sailing and skiing to his sporting repertoire.
Campbell went up to Wadham College, Oxford, where he read Arabic, before going to Sandhurst in 1973. Commissioned into the 1st Battalion Queen’s Own Highlanders (1 QOHLDRS), he joined the Battalion at Osnabrück, West Germany, as a platoon commander.
The following year, he undertook a four-month emergency tour in Northern Ireland. A comrade recalls a cold, red dawn in Crossmaglen, an area notorious for the activities of IRA snipers, with Campbell playing his bagpipes in the back of a Land Rover to make sure that the locals knew that the “Jocks” were in town.
A move to Canada to take part in a company combat team exercise was followed by a course at the Royal Marines Training Centre, Lympstone, Devon. He rejoined 1 QOHLDRS at Osnabrück as Intelligence Officer and then served in Belize and Kirknewton, Edinburgh, where he was Royal Guard Captain.
After a two-year secondment to the Sultan of Oman’s Armed Forces, he became 1 QOHLDRS’s Operations Officer in Hong Kong before being posted to Sandhurst as a platoon commander. While there, he represented the Army at squash.
As ADC outside Government House, Hong Kong, 1980

As ADC outside Government House, Hong Kong, 1980
He commanded a company at Fort George and Belize before being posted to the MoD. A posting to 1 Royal Tank Regiment at Hildesheim, West Germany, as a squadron commander was followed by a six-month tour in Qatar as a military liaison officer.
In 1991 he moved to Abu Dhabi as an acting lieutenant-colonel before undertaking the Army Command & General Staff Course as a student at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. In 1994, 1 QOHLDRS amalgamated with the 1st Bn Gordon Highlanders to form 1st Bn Highlanders (Seaforth, Gordons and Camerons).
Campbell commanded 3 Highlanders, based at their HQ at Elgin, from January 1996 to March 1998. He might have become lost in the MoD bureaucracy but he embarked upon a career path that would take him to an environment that he loved and where his language skills were at a premium.
Studying at the US Army Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas

Studying at the US Army Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas
Appointments as military attaché in Kuwait and Cairo were followed by his posting to the British Embassy, Baghdad. After dinner, as guests gathered at the bar beside the swimming pool, Campbell would play the pipes up and down the sides of the pool to the accompaniment of the screech and blast of incoming munitions.
In 2006, when the invitations to the St Andrew’s Day Ball were sent out, they included as many nationalities as possible. These included the Kurds, whose love of dancing is unsurpassed. Campbell was determined that the British, as hosts, would be able to perform the reels with confidence and efficiency so that they could guide the novices through the steps with confidence.
In the four-week lead-up to the Ball, he organised reeling classes for the British participants, cajoling the reluctant and sceptical to enjoy their lessons and converting those with awkward feet and little sense of rhythm into passable reelers.
The Ball was a great success. The Kurds danced the Dashing White Sergeant, Strip the Willow and the Gay Gordons with such exuberance that it was a difficult job getting them to leave before the curfew. The Americans could not understand how “you Brits” could hold such a Black Tie event in the middle of a war – but they loved it.
It was said that the evening may have done more to polish the reputation – or change perceptions – of Britain than any other single event undertaken by the Embassy. Without Campbell’s exuberance, infectious enthusiasm and panache, it would not have been possible.
Piping in full Highland dress

Piping in full Highland dress
In 2007 he retired from the Army in the rank of colonel and joined the UN High Commission as security adviser based in Amman. He was subsequently appointed director of the Royal United Services Institute in Doha, Qatar, where he was a frequent commentator on Middle East events on Al Jazeera and the BBC.
In 2009 he joined Aegis, the British security company, in Iraq as a project director. He was a security adviser to the Aga Khan Foundation before becoming Director North Africa of the Salamanca Group. He was working for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Stabilisation Group when he became ill.
Alastair Campbell married, in 1993, Primrose Palmer who was a great support to him throughout their married life. She survives him with their two sons and three daughters.
Alastair Campbell, born January 6 1952, died August 24 2021
 
quite sad, and the Telegraph SHOULD know better:

For his bravery he was awarded the Purple Heart and the Bronze Star, two of America’s highest honours.
The Purple Heart is awarded to those injured or killed in action, not for being brave.
 

Missed this very impressive one earlier in the month, one of the gallant crews of the Swordfish the 'string bags'!

Peter Jinks, Swordfish air gunner who survived five crashes in the Mediterranean and Atlantic – obituary​

Despite joining the ‘Goldfish Club’, he flew many successful missions, including convoy escorts and Allied landings in Africa and Italy
Peter Jinks

Peter Jinks
Peter Jinks, who has died aged 99, was a schoolmaster whose wartime flying career was jinxed.
Jinks’s most serious accident occurred on September 22 1943 on board the escort carrier Battler off Gibraltar. The sea was calm and sparkled in the sunshine as his Swordfish, flown by New Zealand sub-lieutenant Percy Craig, made a long, steady run-in for a perfect landing with the hook down ready. The plane caught the first arrestor wire but, in a misunderstanding, was waved off.
Craig applied full throttle, but the aircraft stalled and crashed over the side, where it hung half in and half out of the water. It was battered against the ship’s side before falling into the sea, just missing Battler’s thrashing propeller. Jinks recalled: “After the noise and turmoil of the last couple of minutes it seemed peaceful as we drifted clear, gently sinking in the warm waters of the Mediterranean.”
Jinks and Craig scrambled on to the upper wing, where a dinghy was stowed, but found it too mangled. Fortunately, one of the ship’s Carley floats was entangled in the wreckage – but climbing into it, they realised that they were about to be pulled underwater until Jinks used his knife to cut the raft free.
Within 15 minutes they were picked up by a boat from the cruiser Carlisle and returned to Battler, where, Jinks recalled, the only counselling was double brandy. However, he was enrolled in the Goldfish Club: members wear a special badge showing a white-winged goldfish flying above two symbolic blue waves.
Jinks in his Swordfish

Jinks in his Swordfish
Peter Charles Jinks was born on September 21 1921 and educated at Leicester Grammar School. He had always yearned to fly, and though he was in a reserved occupation as a fitter at a local machine tool manufacturer, in November 1939 he volunteered to be a Telegraphist Air Gunner and trained at HMS Kestrel, the Royal Naval Air Station at Worthy Down, near Winchester.
He recalled his first flight: “I had a large grin on my face and enjoyed every minute, noisy, windy and looking down on the world from a low altitude. This was real flying!”
He was appointed to 771 Naval Air Squadron (NAS) based at Hatston in the Orkneys, where one of his first pilots was a youthful midshipman, Peter Twiss, “who likes to throw the aircraft about a bit”; postwar Twiss became Fairey Aviation’s chief test pilot and the first man to fly at more than 1,000 mph.
Jinx’s first accident came in March 1942 when landing on the escort carrier Archer at the end of a dusk patrol. His Swordfish biplane, piloted by a sub-lieutenant Pratt, bounced over all the restraining wires and ran into the crash barrier.
On May 14 he crashed again, heavily damaging the undercarriage, and six days later his Swordfish came in too low and wiped off the undercarriage on the round-down (the rear end of the flight deck). It ploughed along the wooden deck and stopped with the nose hanging over the ship’s side. After the crew had climbed out safely, the wreckage was pushed over the side.
Jinks took part in the Allied landings in North Africa

Jinks took part in the Allied landings in North Africa
Still in Archer, in the Atlantic, Jinks’s fourth accident came when his Swordfish landed safely but the arrestor wire hydraulics failed and his aircraft again ran into the crash barrier: there it stuck nose down, tail up.
There were also successful operations, and in 834 NAS, Jinks took part in Atlantic convoy escorts, the Allied landings in North Africa and Italy, and in January 1943, after the aircraft had been painted matt black, anti-E-boat operations in the English Channel. Later, the squadron developed Combined Attack Team tactics, whereby cannon-armed Seafire and two Swordfish – one armed with depth charges and another with rockets – would hunt for U-boats.
Battler was redeployed to the Indian Ocean, where Jinks experienced a final accident, on December 15 1943, after several hours on anti-U-boat patrol; they became lost, and glided to a crash-landing in the dunes on the island of Socotra. After walking for two days they found a Dutch naval airbase, whence they were returned by sea via Aden and Bombay to Ceylon, and eventually to Britain.
Postwar, Jinks trained on a one-year emergency training scheme to become a teacher, and for many years taught at primary schools, finishing as headmaster of Eldene in Swindon. On his 80th birthday he enjoyed a 15-minute flight in a Swordfish of the Navy’s Historic Flight.
Peter Jinks married Audrey Jordan in 1949. She and a daughter predeceased him and he is survived by two daughters and son.
Peter Jinks, born September 21 1921, died July 21 2021
 

Not often we have a Field Marshal, let alone one who both fought against us at Suez in 1956 and then with us against Saddam Hussein.

Field Marshal Mohamed Tantawi, veteran of the Suez crisis who took the reins in Egypt after Hosni Mubarak was ousted in the Arab Spring – obituary​

He commanded Egyptian forces in the American-led campaign to drive Iraq out of Kuwait after Saddam Hussein annexed the Gulf emirate in 1990
Mohamed Tantawi: ‘charming and courtly’ but also ‘change-resistant’, according to an American diplomatic assessment

Mohamed Tantawi: ‘charming and courtly’ but also ‘change-resistant’, according to an American diplomatic assessment CREDIT: MARWAN NAAMANI/AFP/Getty Images
Field Marshal Mohamed Tantawi, who has died aged 85, held the ring, as a respected Egyptian soldier, during the 16 months between the end of Hosni Mubarak’s long dictatorship and the advent of short-lived democracy under Mohamed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood.
However, it was not long before the demonstrators who had ousted Mubarak targeted the army for its handling of the transition and, shortly after coming to power, Morsi sacked Tantawi as Chairman of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces and Minister of Defence and Military Production.
A veteran of the Suez Crisis of 1956, the Six-Day War of 1967 and the Yom Kippur War of 1973, Tantawi rose steadily through the ranks after receiving his officer’s commission in 1955. In 1991 he was appointed defence minister by Mubarak and commander-in-chief of the Egyptian Armed Forces, and promoted to lieutenant-general. Two years later he became a field marshal.

When President Mubarak resigned in February 2011, after 18 days of massive popular protest, the vice-president, Omar Suleiman, announced that power would be transferred to the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces headed by Tantawi. Parliament was dissolved, a referendum on temporary constitutional amendments was held and summonses against Mubarak and leading figures of the old regime were issued.
As de facto ruler of Egypt Tantawi preferred to keep a low profile but in November, after more than 30 people had been killed and 2,000 injured by police during protests in Tahrir Square in Cairo, he appeared on national television and promised to speed up the holding of elections.
In a parliamentary poll held between November 2011 and January 2012, a coalition of parties in which Morsi’s Islamist Freedom and Justice Party was the largest member came out top with 37.5 per cent of the vote. The second round of the presidential election in June gave Morsi a narrow victory over his opponent.
The ousting of Mubarak and the subsequent polls were momentous stages in what became known as the Arab Spring, a movement against entrenched oppression which had claimed its first scalp when President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali fled Tunisia for Saudi Arabia in January 2011.
In August 2012, after armed men had ambushed a military base in the Sinai peninsula, killing 16 soldiers and stealing two armoured cars, President Morsi ordered Tantawi to retire and replaced him as armed forces chief and defence minister with Abdel Fattah el-Sisi. The following year, following mass anti-government demonstrations, el-Sisi led a military coup which removed Morsi.
On his retirement, Tantawi was appointed a presidential adviser and decorated with the Grand Collar of the Order of the Nile, Egypt’s highest honour. Thereafter he kept a low profile.
Tantawi greeting the US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Cairo, 2012

Tantawi greeting the US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Cairo, 2012 CREDIT: BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/GettyImages
Mohamed Hussein Tantawi Soliman was born in Cairo on October 31 1935. Of Nubian origin, he took a master’s degree in military science, then served as a fellow of the Egyptian Military Academy in the capital.
Having received his commission in the infantry, he commanded a platoon during the invasion by Israel, Britain and France in 1956. Promoted to major, he led a company during the North Yemen civil war in which Egypt under Nasser supported the republican side against the royalists.
By the Six-Day War Tantawi was a battalion commander and during the Yom Kippur War, as a lieutenant-colonel, he commanded a mechanised infantry battalion.
He served as military attaché to Pakistan from 1983-85. On returning home he became chief of staff, then commander, of the Second Field Army. He headed the Republican Guard Forces, whose job is to defend the president, between 1989 and 1991, and commanded Egyptian forces in the American-led campaign to drive Iraq out of Kuwait after Saddam Hussein had annexed the Gulf emirate in 1990.
Having attained the rank of field marshal in 1993, it was thought that he would have become president had an assassination attempt on Mubarak in Addis Ababa two years later been successful.
An American diplomatic cable published by WikiLeaks in 2008 described Tantawi as “charming and courtly” but also “aged [he was then in his mid-70s] and change-resistant”. He and Mubarak, the cable read, “are focused on regime stability and maintaining the status quo”. They simply lacked “the energy, inclination or world view to do anything differently”.
As de facto head of state, Tantawi tried to appease the Islamists by freeing their jailed members. At the same time he cracked down on dissent, leading demonstrators to brand him a dictator and demand his resignation. He was again seen as a possible successor to Mubarak as president but did not stand for election in 2012, apparently because of his age, state of health and absence of political ambition.
Among his foreign honours, Tantawi was a Knight of the Order of St Michael and St George.
He is survived by his wife and two sons.
Mohamed Tantawi, born October 31 1935, died September 21 2021
 

Colonel Alastair Campbell, accomplished Arabist and soldier who served as military attaché in Iraq during a tense three years – obituary​

At a St Andrew’s Day Ball in 2006 Campbell found that the dance-loving Kurds took to Scottish reels with exuberance
October 2021 • 6:54am

Alastair Campbell in Oman

Campbell in Oman
Colonel Alastair Campbell, who has died aged 69, brought style, charm and a great sense of fun to a distinguished career in soldiering.
In June 2004, Campbell moved to the British Embassy in Baghdad as military attaché. It was a crucial time. Direct rule by the US-led Coalition Provisional Authority had ended and a caretaker Interim Government had assumed the responsibility and authority of the state.
Campbell was an accomplished Arabist, and with his language skills he worked his way very effectively into the Iraqi MoD. He would wander along the corridors of power listening to what was being said in the sure knowledge that the Iraqis would not know that he was almost fluent in their language.
On a visit to the naval base at Umm Qasr, he came to a lonely outpost where he engaged the sentry in conversation in the same informal manner that he would have used with one of his soldiers. It turned out that the post had never been visited by an Iraqi officer. Campbell learned much about the morale and practices at the base.
Campbell as defence attaché

Campbell as defence attaché
The average length of a posting was 12 months, punctuated by breaks every two months. He was in Iraq for three years, a most exacting test of physical and mental stamina, but it enabled him to build trust among American and Iraqi colleagues.


It also made him an invaluable source of advice, comfort and wisdom for the stream of British officials unused to living under rocket and mortar fire.
In the sometimes unavoidably brutal conditions, he retained an unshakeable grip on civilisation and culture; it was sensitively worn but ready to share if he thought a colleague needed it.
Campbell piping in combat kit

Campbell piping in combat kit
Alastair James Calthrop Campbell, the younger son of Lord Campbell of Croy, MC, PC, DL, and a former Secretary of State for Scotland, was born in London on January 6 1952. At his preparatory school he excelled at sport and he went on to Eton, where he developed a passion for poetry and modern languages.
He played the piano, sang, acted and learnt to play the bagpipes. He was also a fine athlete and played for the first XV at rugby. Later in life, he added sailing and skiing to his sporting repertoire.
Campbell went up to Wadham College, Oxford, where he read Arabic, before going to Sandhurst in 1973. Commissioned into the 1st Battalion Queen’s Own Highlanders (1 QOHLDRS), he joined the Battalion at Osnabrück, West Germany, as a platoon commander.
The following year, he undertook a four-month emergency tour in Northern Ireland. A comrade recalls a cold, red dawn in Crossmaglen, an area notorious for the activities of IRA snipers, with Campbell playing his bagpipes in the back of a Land Rover to make sure that the locals knew that the “Jocks” were in town.
A move to Canada to take part in a company combat team exercise was followed by a course at the Royal Marines Training Centre, Lympstone, Devon. He rejoined 1 QOHLDRS at Osnabrück as Intelligence Officer and then served in Belize and Kirknewton, Edinburgh, where he was Royal Guard Captain.
After a two-year secondment to the Sultan of Oman’s Armed Forces, he became 1 QOHLDRS’s Operations Officer in Hong Kong before being posted to Sandhurst as a platoon commander. While there, he represented the Army at squash.
As ADC outside Government House, Hong Kong, 1980

As ADC outside Government House, Hong Kong, 1980
He commanded a company at Fort George and Belize before being posted to the MoD. A posting to 1 Royal Tank Regiment at Hildesheim, West Germany, as a squadron commander was followed by a six-month tour in Qatar as a military liaison officer.
In 1991 he moved to Abu Dhabi as an acting lieutenant-colonel before undertaking the Army Command & General Staff Course as a student at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. In 1994, 1 QOHLDRS amalgamated with the 1st Bn Gordon Highlanders to form 1st Bn Highlanders (Seaforth, Gordons and Camerons).
Campbell commanded 3 Highlanders, based at their HQ at Elgin, from January 1996 to March 1998. He might have become lost in the MoD bureaucracy but he embarked upon a career path that would take him to an environment that he loved and where his language skills were at a premium.
Studying at the US Army Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas

Studying at the US Army Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas
Appointments as military attaché in Kuwait and Cairo were followed by his posting to the British Embassy, Baghdad. After dinner, as guests gathered at the bar beside the swimming pool, Campbell would play the pipes up and down the sides of the pool to the accompaniment of the screech and blast of incoming munitions.
In 2006, when the invitations to the St Andrew’s Day Ball were sent out, they included as many nationalities as possible. These included the Kurds, whose love of dancing is unsurpassed. Campbell was determined that the British, as hosts, would be able to perform the reels with confidence and efficiency so that they could guide the novices through the steps with confidence.
In the four-week lead-up to the Ball, he organised reeling classes for the British participants, cajoling the reluctant and sceptical to enjoy their lessons and converting those with awkward feet and little sense of rhythm into passable reelers.
The Ball was a great success. The Kurds danced the Dashing White Sergeant, Strip the Willow and the Gay Gordons with such exuberance that it was a difficult job getting them to leave before the curfew. The Americans could not understand how “you Brits” could hold such a Black Tie event in the middle of a war – but they loved it.
It was said that the evening may have done more to polish the reputation – or change perceptions – of Britain than any other single event undertaken by the Embassy. Without Campbell’s exuberance, infectious enthusiasm and panache, it would not have been possible.
Piping in full Highland dress

Piping in full Highland dress
In 2007 he retired from the Army in the rank of colonel and joined the UN High Commission as security adviser based in Amman. He was subsequently appointed director of the Royal United Services Institute in Doha, Qatar, where he was a frequent commentator on Middle East events on Al Jazeera and the BBC.
In 2009 he joined Aegis, the British security company, in Iraq as a project director. He was a security adviser to the Aga Khan Foundation before becoming Director North Africa of the Salamanca Group. He was working for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Stabilisation Group when he became ill.
Alastair Campbell married, in 1993, Primrose Palmer who was a great support to him throughout their married life. She survives him with their two sons and three daughters.
Alastair Campbell, born January 6 1952, died August 24 2021

His obit reads like something from another age, just wonder that this sort of life will not be possible in the future. Sad to see him go as he should have had a few more good years yet.
 

Air Chief Marshal Sir John Rogers, Cold War fighter pilot who later oversaw procurement of all military aircraft and associated weapon systems – obituary​

He also had a passion for motorsport and took part in events at Silverstone and Brands Hatch, his cars including Aston Martins and a Darracq
John Rogers

John Rogers: strict but knowledgeable and fair
Air Chief Marshal Sir John Rogers, who has died aged 93, was a former aircraft apprentice and Cold War fighter pilot who rose to serve on the Air Force Board of the Defence Council.
Rogers became Controller Aircraft (CA) in the MoD in January 1983, a job in which he was responsible for the procurement of all military aircraft and associated weapon systems – a complex process involving, political, industrial and financial interests.
A new aircraft type could not be used by the forces without a CA Release, which Rogers would issue once all the necessary system testing had been satisfactorily carried out. CA was also responsible for post design services on in-service aircraft.
Rogers worked closely with industry and the MoD’s procurement executive. He met regularly with all his project directors and conducted individual reviews with them every quarter. He was regarded as strict but very knowledgeable and fair by all his staff.

Among many other projects at that time, he had the overall responsibility for the procurement of the Tornado and Hawk aircraft, and the in-service support for the Phantom and Buccaneer aircraft.
John Robson Rogers was born in Brentwood, Essex on January 11 1928. He was educated at Brentwood School and in 1944 joined the RAF as an aircraft apprentice.
For three years he trained as a ground radio fitter. He finished near the top of the order of merit and was awarded a cadetship at the RAF College Cranwell where he completed his training as a pilot. He was commissioned in April 1950 and began training as a night fighter pilot.
Rogers’ long association with fighter aircraft commenced when he joined 141 Squadron, which was equipped with the Mosquito. After six months he headed for Egypt where he joined 219 Squadron, based at Kabrit in the Canal Zone, and where he became the squadron’s tactics instructor.
With regular detachments to Malta, Cyprus, Libya and Iraq, three months of the year was spent away from his base on the shores of the Great Bitter Lakes. Before leaving Egypt, the Mosquitos were replaced by the night-fighter version of the twin-engine Meteor jet fighter.
On his return to Britain after three years in Egypt, he joined the All Weather Development Squadron of the Central Fighter Establishment. The Meteor was still operational but was being replaced by the delta-wing Gloster Javelin, and Rogers and his fellow aircrew were responsible for devising and developing all-weather and night fighting tactics.
By 1956 he was a highly experienced and accomplished fighter pilot and was sent to the USAF’s Tyndall Air Force base in Florida for three years to train pilots and weapons system operators on all-weather and night fighters.
His return to Britain in January 1960 saw him appointed to command 56 Squadron at Wattisham in Suffolk. The squadron was flying the Hunter, but by the end of the year it began to receive the new supersonic Lightning aircraft. Fully equipped by the following spring, the squadron carried out a number of long-range flights pioneering the use of air-to-air refuelling.
After serving as the personal staff officer to the Commander-in-Chief Fighter Command, Rogers took command of the Air Fighting Development Squadron at the Central Fighter Establishment. The latest version of the Lightning was entering service and Rogers flew many trial flights.
In early 1965, the then Labour Government cancelled a number of projects including the replacement for the RAF’s long-serving Hunter. It was decided to procure the US-built Phantom powered by Rolls-Royce Spey engines.
With his previous experience of service with the USAF, and his wide experience of fighter operations, Rogers left for Washington in April 1965 to be the RAF Phantom Procurement Manager, a post he held for almost three years, to oversee an initial order for 200 aircraft, later substantially reduced.
In February 1968, he became the station commander at RAF Coningsby, the base selected for the first Phantom units. He first oversaw the considerable work programme to prepare the former V-bomber base for Phantom operations. The first aircraft arrived direct from the US in August and flying training began almost immediately. By the time Rogers relinquished command, two squadrons and a training unit were operational.
Rogers, right, with his navigator and their Mosquito night fighter

Rogers, right, with his navigator and their Mosquito night fighter
In August 1970 he moved to HQ 38 Group as group captain operations, the parent group for the Phantom squadrons, in addition to other front-line squadrons. On promotion to air commodore, he served as a director of operational requirements in MoD.
Rogers returned to the RAF College Cranwell in January 1974 to take up the post of Deputy Commandant. He was also responsible for the newly established Department of Air Warfare, which provided specialist courses in air weapons, navigation and electronic warfare.
After attending the 1976 Royal College of Defence Studies course, he was promoted to air vice-marshal to become the Director General of Organisation in MoD. In November 1979 he became the Air Officer Commanding Training Units, which gave him responsibility for supervising all aspects of air and ground training in the RAF. A proud moment came when he presented his son David with his pilot’s wings.
Rogers was appointed to the Air Force Board in July 1981 as the Air Member for Supply and Organisation his responsibilities including engineering, equipment and RAF organisation and the RAF Regiment. After 18 months in post, and promotion to air chief marshal, he remained on the Air Force Board to take up the appointment of Controller Aircraft.
He retired from the RAF in March 1986 having been appointed CBE (1971) and KCB (1982). He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society in 1983.
During his RAF career he maintained his long-standing interest in motorsport, and in the late 1980s took part in many events at Silverstone, Brands Hatch, Cadwell, and Donington Park. By this time, he had acquired LM6, a 1931 Aston Martin Team car, and regularly featured in races in the same event as his two sons who took it in turns to drive their second Aston Martin Le Mans.
Rogers with his wife Elspeth driving his Darracq 4 in the Brighton Run

Rogers with his wife Elspeth driving his Darracq 4 in the Brighton Run
His motoring hobby eventually turned into a second career and in 1986 he became a director of David Wickens’ British Car Auctions, which encouraged him to renew collecting. His daughter’s wedding became a spur to buy a 1923 Rolls Royce. His job took him all over the world to different motoring events, and he regularly competed in classic car trials.
His involvement in the organisation of the Brighton Run led him to take part driving an Orient Buckboard, which he described as, “Not my shrewdest choice. We never got to Brighton. My sons picked me up and we decided to get a serious motor car.” He acquired a 1904 Darracq.
Rogers considered himself to be a “rebuilder” rather than a “restorer”. He acknowledged that he was no purist and commented: “I like things original but it is not a fetish. Cars are for driving. I like to drive them and I like something to do with them. That’s why I like the RAC’s three classic car runs.”
In 1989 he became the executive chairman of RAC Motor Sports Association, a position he held for 10 years before being made a Life Vice-President. In 1995 he became a member of the Federation International d’Automobile (FIA) World Motor Sport Council, a role which took him to many international Formula 1 motorsports events as governing official and UK representative.
In 1955 John Rogers married Elspeth Campbell. She survives him with their two sons and two daughters.
Air Chief Marshal Sir John Rogers, born January 11 1928, died October 11 2021

His life story and career are typical of many who rose to high command in the RAF from it's start to 1970's, Halton Apprentice, pass out top of the shop, Cranwell then all the way up the career greasy poll! Up to 1950's add the additional option of SNCO pilot, Commission and up the poll. Cannot see a 16 year old joining with education at GCSE O level standard reaching this career level now.
 
Well worth a read.
Possibly one of the finest Obits I have seen for a while. He was even Returned to his Unit by Lt Col Blair “Paddy” Mayne, CO of 1st SAS Regiment!

Stanley Perry, troop commander who survived a sniper’s bullet and a mortar bomb in ferocious fighting after the Normandy landings – obituary​

He had a narrow escape when shrapnel was slowed up by a wallet in the breast pocket of his battledress, a present from his wife

Stan Perry

Stan Perry
Stanley Perry, who has died aged 97, served with the Sherwood Rangers Yeomanry (SRY) and saw some of the fiercest fighting in the Second World War.
The SRY, part of 8th Armoured Brigade, landed on Gold Beach, Normandy, on D-Day, June 6 1944. They were equipped with swimming Sherman tanks fitted with canvas flotation screens and propellers driven by the tank’s engine.
Perry commanded No 4 Troop, C Squadron. Two months later, in mid-August, he was involved in his Regiment’s attempt to navigate the River Noireau and climb through steep, wooded hills and capture the Berjou Ridge.
Lieutenant-Colonel Stanley Christopherson, his commanding officer, had to find out whether the river could be crossed and Perry was ordered to make a night reconnaissance.
Crawling through thick bocage, accompanied by an infantryman and a sapper, he came across a German machine-gun post. The infantryman was armed with a Sten gun and wanted to attack it. “Not bloody likely,” Perry told him, “that would tell the Germans we’re here.” They crept around the post and discovered that the bridge had been destroyed.

The river, however, was not more than a few feet deep and easily fordable. On their return journey, they knocked out the enemy post with Mills bombs. Perry reported to his CO and got into his sleeping bag at two o’clock in the morning.
An hour later, he was shaken awake and told that the SRY had to be over the river at first light and that his troop was to lead the way. Shortly after he set off, he came across a dead sapper who had been blown up on a mine.
A sapper officer told him that they were still clearing a minefield and he should halt until they had finished. But Perry had his orders. His troop followed in his tank tracks and they crossed the river without loss.
As his tank climbed up the opposite bank, a rocket from a Panzerfaust carried away his aerial and he lost all wireless contact. Shortly afterwards, his corporal’s tank was hit by a mortar bomb and he was blown out of the turret. His sergeant dismounted from his tank and was running across to help the wounded man when he was mown down by a machine gun.
Both were killed.
Stan Perry's troop of tanks, early 1945, during the advance to the Rhine

Stan Perry's troop of tanks, early 1945, during the advance to the Rhine
A few moments later, Perry was hit by a sniper’s bullet and lost the use of an arm. Then steering was lost because a Panzerfaust rocket jammed one of the tank tracks.
Somehow, they managed to return to the river. The bridge had been repaired and they got back to the squadron HQ. A medic took one look at Perry and called for a full medical team. He had to be evacuated at once.
Back in England, he was on a hospital train which had halted for an hour when he spotted a nearby pub. He was heavily bandaged, but could walk a little and managed to make his way there.
He ordered a pint of beer and put his hand in his pocket to pay for it. The landlord said: “Are you insulting me, sir?”
“No,” replied Perry, “I’m paying for my pint.”
“You’re not paying for beer in here,” said the landlord, and a few moments later there were five pints lined up on the counter.
Stanley Arthur Perry was born in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, on November 8 1923. His father worked in a factory processing sugar beet. Young Stan won a scholarship to Culford School. Aged 12, he started playing rugby. He played until he was 42 and represented RMA Sandhurst and the Army.
His parents were devout Christians and on Sundays he attended church four times. One night a week he manned the warden’s First Aid post and once the bombing started he was called out to help with the casualties.
He gained a scholarship to read Mathematics at Cambridge but enlisted in the Army instead. He had wanted to serve with the RAF as an air gunner but was persuaded to join the Young Soldiers Training Regiment, Royal Armoured Corps, at Bovington, Dorset.
An American medical unit was experimenting with a new drug. Perry and fellow “volunteers” were injected with a mumps serum. They developed jaundice, but being looked after by attractive nurses provided some consolation.
He applied for a commission, passed the War Office Selection Board and went to RMA Sandhurst in autumn 1941.
Matt Busby, who subsequently managed Manchester United and was knighted, was a PT instructor there. Busby took his charges on a six-mile cross-country run every morning. He used to lead and, at regular intervals, would turn around and say: “I’ll sweat the beer out of you idle beggars.”
Perry was trained on Valentine, Matilda and Churchill tanks. The course included instruction in gunnery, wireless telegraphy and the principles of commanding a tank crew. In summer 1942 he was commissioned into the Suffolk Regiment, but to his considerable disappointment he was posted to a north country training depot, nominally as motor transport officer but actually sports officer.
Perry applied to transfer to the SAS and was accepted. He completed a parachute course at Ringway, Manchester, and was posted to Egypt. He was interviewed by Johnny Cooper but the two men did not take to each other. During a heated argument, Perry struck Cooper. He was posted back to his unit at Darvel, Ayrshire, where Lt Col Blair “Paddy” Mayne, CO of 1st SAS Regiment, gave him the choice of facing a court martial for striking a superior officer or finding another regiment.
Mayne covered up the affair, and when Perry applied to join the SRY he was accepted. In the training for D-Day he went to Portsmouth, where he practised escaping from a submerged tank, a task made more difficult by the fact that he had never learnt to swim.
His tank crew talked about him, sometimes disparagingly, using slang to disguise the meaning. But he was a linguist and quickly learnt the language and used it to tell them off. They were abashed, but it was the beginning of a close relationship.
During the Battle of Normandy, the SRY were in action for 55 days and lost 200 men killed or wounded. Perry was wounded several times. On the second occasion, his life was saved by a wallet that his wife had given him. Shrapnel from a mortar bomb which would have killed him pierced the wallet in the breast pocket of his battledress and lodged in the wall of his heart.
There were other narrow escapes. As he was leading his troop through a village, a length of wire strung across the street caught him in the throat. He shouted to his driver to stop and just managed to free himself in time.
He often dismounted when going along narrow roads in villages. There was always the danger of someone lobbing a grenade from an upper window into the turret.
Other hazards were less easily avoided. Perry met a Frenchman on the outskirts of a village. The man said he believed that almost all the Germans had left, but he pointed to a house and said that there might still be enemy soldiers there.
Perry had his pistol and took his gunner, who was armed with a Sten. They went to the house. Perry kicked in the door. He saw a movement inside and shot. He hit the grandfather clock.
On the table was a full bottle of wine with the cork drawn and a glass beside it. The gunner was reaching for it when Perry shouted: “Stop!” He had spotted some wiring under the table. The bottle was connected to a deadly anti-personnel device.
After he was repatriated following the battle for Berjou, he was treated at Baguley Hospital at Wythenshawe in Manchester, where he met Lisa Berg. After he had recovered, he had a week’s embarkation leave and the two got married.
Perry then rejoined the SRY near Maastricht and, in mid-January 1945, as his Regiment prepared to attack Heinsberg to the north-east, he was returning to his tank after an O Group when he heard the screeching of incoming rockets from a Nebelwerfer. He dived for cover but was hit by shrapnel in the face, arm, chest and leg.
He was sent to an American hospital in Brussels and when he regained consciousness he found a replica Purple Heart on the locker beside his bed. An American clergyman came to his bedside to present him with the award but when he found out that Perry was serving with a British regiment, he took it back again.
Perry was on the danger list for several weeks. He became addicted to morphine and drifted in and out of consciousness. A GI came and asked him if he had any last wishes. Perry said he would like some pineapple juice and the next day two dozen cans of tinned pineapple arrived.
Back in England, he was operated on by a chest surgeon. It was found that he had shrapnel in his lung and pieces of his ribs were removed. He was medically downgraded and after returning to duty in December 1945, he was made adjutant of a PoW camp holding 3,000 German prisoners. He finished his service in the rank of captain.
Perry subsequently moved to Denmark, and for the next three years he worked for a company making coated paper. There was high unemployment in the country, and when his work permit expired he returned to England and worked for Unilever.
He finally retired in 1994, but he was the church treasurer of the village of Holton le Moor, Lincolnshire, until he died. In 2015 he was presented with the Légion d’honneur.
Stan Perry married, in 1944, Anne-Lise (Lisa) Berg. She predeceased him and he is survived by their son and two daughters.
Stanley Perry, born November 8 1923, died October 6 2021
 
Well worth a read.
Possibly one of the finest Obits I have seen for a while. He was even Returned to his Unit by Lt Col Blair “Paddy” Mayne, CO of 1st SAS Regiment!

Stanley Perry, troop commander who survived a sniper’s bullet and a mortar bomb in ferocious fighting after the Normandy landings – obituary​

He had a narrow escape when shrapnel was slowed up by a wallet in the breast pocket of his battledress, a present from his wife

Stan Perry

Stan Perry
Stanley Perry, who has died aged 97, served with the Sherwood Rangers Yeomanry (SRY) and saw some of the fiercest fighting in the Second World War.
The SRY, part of 8th Armoured Brigade, landed on Gold Beach, Normandy, on D-Day, June 6 1944. They were equipped with swimming Sherman tanks fitted with canvas flotation screens and propellers driven by the tank’s engine.
Perry commanded No 4 Troop, C Squadron. Two months later, in mid-August, he was involved in his Regiment’s attempt to navigate the River Noireau and climb through steep, wooded hills and capture the Berjou Ridge.
Lieutenant-Colonel Stanley Christopherson, his commanding officer, had to find out whether the river could be crossed and Perry was ordered to make a night reconnaissance.
Crawling through thick bocage, accompanied by an infantryman and a sapper, he came across a German machine-gun post. The infantryman was armed with a Sten gun and wanted to attack it. “Not bloody likely,” Perry told him, “that would tell the Germans we’re here.” They crept around the post and discovered that the bridge had been destroyed.

The river, however, was not more than a few feet deep and easily fordable. On their return journey, they knocked out the enemy post with Mills bombs. Perry reported to his CO and got into his sleeping bag at two o’clock in the morning.
An hour later, he was shaken awake and told that the SRY had to be over the river at first light and that his troop was to lead the way. Shortly after he set off, he came across a dead sapper who had been blown up on a mine.
A sapper officer told him that they were still clearing a minefield and he should halt until they had finished. But Perry had his orders. His troop followed in his tank tracks and they crossed the river without loss.
As his tank climbed up the opposite bank, a rocket from a Panzerfaust carried away his aerial and he lost all wireless contact. Shortly afterwards, his corporal’s tank was hit by a mortar bomb and he was blown out of the turret. His sergeant dismounted from his tank and was running across to help the wounded man when he was mown down by a machine gun.
Both were killed.
Stan Perry's troop of tanks, early 1945, during the advance to the Rhine's troop of tanks, early 1945, during the advance to the Rhine

Stan Perry's troop of tanks, early 1945, during the advance to the Rhine
A few moments later, Perry was hit by a sniper’s bullet and lost the use of an arm. Then steering was lost because a Panzerfaust rocket jammed one of the tank tracks.
Somehow, they managed to return to the river. The bridge had been repaired and they got back to the squadron HQ. A medic took one look at Perry and called for a full medical team. He had to be evacuated at once.
Back in England, he was on a hospital train which had halted for an hour when he spotted a nearby pub. He was heavily bandaged, but could walk a little and managed to make his way there.
He ordered a pint of beer and put his hand in his pocket to pay for it. The landlord said: “Are you insulting me, sir?”
“No,” replied Perry, “I’m paying for my pint.”
“You’re not paying for beer in here,” said the landlord, and a few moments later there were five pints lined up on the counter.
Stanley Arthur Perry was born in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, on November 8 1923. His father worked in a factory processing sugar beet. Young Stan won a scholarship to Culford School. Aged 12, he started playing rugby. He played until he was 42 and represented RMA Sandhurst and the Army.
His parents were devout Christians and on Sundays he attended church four times. One night a week he manned the warden’s First Aid post and once the bombing started he was called out to help with the casualties.
He gained a scholarship to read Mathematics at Cambridge but enlisted in the Army instead. He had wanted to serve with the RAF as an air gunner but was persuaded to join the Young Soldiers Training Regiment, Royal Armoured Corps, at Bovington, Dorset.
An American medical unit was experimenting with a new drug. Perry and fellow “volunteers” were injected with a mumps serum. They developed jaundice, but being looked after by attractive nurses provided some consolation.
He applied for a commission, passed the War Office Selection Board and went to RMA Sandhurst in autumn 1941.
Matt Busby, who subsequently managed Manchester United and was knighted, was a PT instructor there. Busby took his charges on a six-mile cross-country run every morning. He used to lead and, at regular intervals, would turn around and say: “I’ll sweat the beer out of you idle beggars.”
Perry was trained on Valentine, Matilda and Churchill tanks. The course included instruction in gunnery, wireless telegraphy and the principles of commanding a tank crew. In summer 1942 he was commissioned into the Suffolk Regiment, but to his considerable disappointment he was posted to a north country training depot, nominally as motor transport officer but actually sports officer.
Perry applied to transfer to the SAS and was accepted. He completed a parachute course at Ringway, Manchester, and was posted to Egypt. He was interviewed by Johnny Cooper but the two men did not take to each other. During a heated argument, Perry struck Cooper. He was posted back to his unit at Darvel, Ayrshire, where Lt Col Blair “Paddy” Mayne, CO of 1st SAS Regiment, gave him the choice of facing a court martial for striking a superior officer or finding another regiment.
Mayne covered up the affair, and when Perry applied to join the SRY he was accepted. In the training for D-Day he went to Portsmouth, where he practised escaping from a submerged tank, a task made more difficult by the fact that he had never learnt to swim.
His tank crew talked about him, sometimes disparagingly, using slang to disguise the meaning. But he was a linguist and quickly learnt the language and used it to tell them off. They were abashed, but it was the beginning of a close relationship.
During the Battle of Normandy, the SRY were in action for 55 days and lost 200 men killed or wounded. Perry was wounded several times. On the second occasion, his life was saved by a wallet that his wife had given him. Shrapnel from a mortar bomb which would have killed him pierced the wallet in the breast pocket of his battledress and lodged in the wall of his heart.
There were other narrow escapes. As he was leading his troop through a village, a length of wire strung across the street caught him in the throat. He shouted to his driver to stop and just managed to free himself in time.
He often dismounted when going along narrow roads in villages. There was always the danger of someone lobbing a grenade from an upper window into the turret.
Other hazards were less easily avoided. Perry met a Frenchman on the outskirts of a village. The man said he believed that almost all the Germans had left, but he pointed to a house and said that there might still be enemy soldiers there.
Perry had his pistol and took his gunner, who was armed with a Sten. They went to the house. Perry kicked in the door. He saw a movement inside and shot. He hit the grandfather clock.
On the table was a full bottle of wine with the cork drawn and a glass beside it. The gunner was reaching for it when Perry shouted: “Stop!” He had spotted some wiring under the table. The bottle was connected to a deadly anti-personnel device.
After he was repatriated following the battle for Berjou, he was treated at Baguley Hospital at Wythenshawe in Manchester, where he met Lisa Berg. After he had recovered, he had a week’s embarkation leave and the two got married.
Perry then rejoined the SRY near Maastricht and, in mid-January 1945, as his Regiment prepared to attack Heinsberg to the north-east, he was returning to his tank after an O Group when he heard the screeching of incoming rockets from a Nebelwerfer. He dived for cover but was hit by shrapnel in the face, arm, chest and leg.
He was sent to an American hospital in Brussels and when he regained consciousness he found a replica Purple Heart on the locker beside his bed. An American clergyman came to his bedside to present him with the award but when he found out that Perry was serving with a British regiment, he took it back again.
Perry was on the danger list for several weeks. He became addicted to morphine and drifted in and out of consciousness. A GI came and asked him if he had any last wishes. Perry said he would like some pineapple juice and the next day two dozen cans of tinned pineapple arrived.
Back in England, he was operated on by a chest surgeon. It was found that he had shrapnel in his lung and pieces of his ribs were removed. He was medically downgraded and after returning to duty in December 1945, he was made adjutant of a PoW camp holding 3,000 German prisoners. He finished his service in the rank of captain.
Perry subsequently moved to Denmark, and for the next three years he worked for a company making coated paper. There was high unemployment in the country, and when his work permit expired he returned to England and worked for Unilever.
He finally retired in 1994, but he was the church treasurer of the village of Holton le Moor, Lincolnshire, until he died. In 2015 he was presented with the Légion d’honneur.
Stan Perry married, in 1944, Anne-Lise (Lisa) Berg. She predeceased him and he is survived by their son and two daughters.
Stanley Perry, born November 8 1923, died October 6 2021
I agree your comments, every day of his life after WW2 was bonus.
 

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