Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Squadron Leader Brian Jopling: Falkland RAF Hero dies

From This is Oxfordshire

Brian Jopling looks out of a Puma helicopter over Rhodesia during the transition to black majority rule in 1980 

Obituary: Carterton RAF hero Brian Jopling saved lives after attack on ship in Falklands conflict

A ROYAL Air Force veteran honoured for his bravery in helping to save people from a stricken ship during the Falklands War has died aged 62. 

Father-of-two Brian Jopling, from Carterton, spent 40 years in the RAF in a career that included service in the Falklands and Afghanistan and the first Gulf War. 

He also flew as loadmaster on flights carrying many dignitaries, including the Queen, Prince Philip, Prince Charles, Princess Diana and former Prime Ministers Margaret Thatcher, John Major and Tony Blair. 

Mr Jopling, who retired with the rank of Squadron Leader, was awarded the Queen’s Gallantry Medal, which recognises “exemplary bravery”, for his actions when Argentine planes attacked the container ship Atlantic Conveyor off the Falkland Islands on May 25, 1982. 

The ship was carrying RAF helicopters and supplies for the British task force sent to recapture the islands after they were invaded by Argentina that April. 

Two Exocet missiles fired by Argentine jets hit the ship, killing 12 members of the crew. 

The then Flight Sergeant Jopling was part of a contingent from RAF Odiham travelling with their Boeing Chinook helicopters and was acting as an air-defence machine gunner on the ship’s bridge during the attack....

Much more here.

The world is poorer for the loss of this Hero.

No comments: