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Ray Knowles - RIP

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Ray Knowles - RIP

Old 22nd Jan 2015, 11:45
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Ray Knowles - RIP

Sadly, I hear that RFK has recently slipped the surlies.

No further details as yet - but he was undoubtedly one of the real characters of the RAF and tales of his many deeds could fill a book!
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 12:50
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Very sorry to hear that Beagle! A real character. Very useful to have around as he took most of the sh1t when the bomb went off! RIP old Mate. You will long be remembered especially by those in senior positions who sometimes failed to agree with your wonderful sense of mischief!
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 12:52
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RFK Gone!! Very sad news indeed.
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 13:21
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Sad news, he made me laugh many times. RIP mate.
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 13:22
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Far too young; can still hear that accent.

Top man.

RIP
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 15:36
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On more than a few occasions I was subjected to the guidance/instruction of RFK and it was thanks to his fortitude that I got through the course.

His gentle, all encompassing, tolerant, soft, Irish lilt still comes to me now and again. As does the essence of Shankhkill Road and Ian Paisley.

God Bless Ray Fu(£!ng Knowles.
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 15:49
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Ray Knowles

What a shock, and very sad. I was at Valley when he banged out of a Lightning whilst delivering the static Lightning for the Valley show. The ejection worked perfectly and he was uninjured. I'll never forget the party that evening.
RIP Ray.
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 15:53
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Ray was my QFI on BFTS at Cranwell in 81-82 and we ended up at Brize together a few years later - Ray on 101 and me on 10.

Very sad to hear this news and would appreciate more details, with funeral arrangements if possible.

RIP mate.
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 16:06
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In his VC10K days on 101, Ray was obviously held in great esteem by his former Lightning mates - at Ray's wedding in Binbrook church, there was a brief moment between the 'amen' of whatever we were mumbling at the time and the vicar beginning the next part of the ceremony.

Somehow, the Lightning mates had arranged a practice scramble a little earlier - and in that brief pause the aircraft came back over the church.....

....at about rooftop height and M0.9lots! How did they get the timing so spot-on?

RIP, mate.
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 16:16
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What a shock, and very sad. I was at Valley when he banged out of a Lightning whilst delivering the static Lightning for the Valley show.
Gosh - I saw that one - I was delivering the static Gazelle.

One of the undercarriage legs wouldn't come down IIRC and many of us were stood outside the Mess watching. A gentle (if there is such a thing!) pre-planned ejection with 22 Sqn's finest waiting for him to "splash down".

He reckoned the rescue was so quick he was only wet from the waist down!

And it was a good party that evening.

RIP
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 16:32
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Very sad to hear the passing of a VC10 colleague and ex Frightning mate.
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 16:34
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2200 hrs (or thereabouts) one evening on MDA watch:

“Leeming, BIN 123 on handover from Binbrook, Hdg 335, FL 45 on a PD for radar to PAR”

“BIN 123, traffic left 10 o’clock, 8 miles, left-right, DC-9 inbound Teesside descending to FL55 against you.”

“Leeming, he’s no threat – oi’ve splashed him already………”

RIP
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 17:33
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Very sad to hear. "Could of been woorse", he might have said himself!

OAP
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 17:35
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Sad to hear.

Ray was my introduction to the RAF when I arrived at METS. Sat on the jumpseat on a famil and I got a bollocking for not keeping a good enough lookout! Frankly he scared the crap out of me!

Lovely chap though, enjoyed learning from him.

RIP
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 18:40
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Ray said he had been careful to point his Lightning at the Republic before banging out.....RIP Ray.
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 18:56
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Ray

Where to begin?! Probably Binbrook where we shared many a memorable evening. Friday happy hour was not epic if Knowlesy wasn't there! but when he was it was guaranteed to be epic. He would recite poetry, sing songs and play the spoons and then set fire to himself (inadvertently I hasten to add)(which he did on several occasions!). He blew up the C in C Strike Command at the 25th anniversary dining in night of the Lightning and was largely responsible for the explosions in the OM toilets of the same evening. He got a bucket load of grief for this which was a shame as there were several very senior officers who encouraged him at the time but magically new nothing later when the shit hit the fan.
He was my best man and was a VERY good best man and reduced a room full of wedding guests to howling laughter.
We lost contact later in life and now I regret doing so.
Ulsterman, Irishman, RAF Officer, Fighter Pilot,VC10 Pilot. R.I.P.
Gone but definitely not forgotten WIWOL colleague.
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 19:43
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Very sad - I seem to remember he was on one of the last OCU courses at Colt - what a guy! RIP.
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 20:02
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Thanks again Ray! Raising (a few!) glasses to you.
Maybe some of your stories can come out now?!

OAP
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Old 22nd Jan 2015, 22:40
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RFK - my QFI on METS in 91/2

RIP

Duncs
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Old 23rd Jan 2015, 04:08
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Ray was my secondary QFI on BFT at Cranwell. We had flown only a few trips when he told me "your ability and my temperament do not match. I will never fly with you again'. Although we never did fly again Ray, at some risk to himself, told me that my course record file was being rewritten in order to chop me. Without this "heads up" I wouldn't have been able to avoid the axe. Thank you Ray. RIP.
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