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Sqn Ldr Mark Hare

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Sqn Ldr Mark Hare

Old 8th Sep 2021, 17:29
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Sqn Ldr Mark Hare

I have just read that Sqn Ldr Mark Hare, Falklands War Harrier pilot has passed away at the age of 66. I believe his Obituary is in the Telegraph. RIP Sir and thank you! (Mods please delete if a better thread reports this).
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Old 9th Sep 2021, 10:25
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Mark was one of the intrepid 1(F) Sqn pilots that came down with Atlantic Conveyor and cross-decked to Hermes on 18th May. None of them had any experience of shipboard ops and found themselves in a very hostile command environment. The Captain wanted to launch them into the fight immediately but we managed to secure them a couple of sorties to get used to ship's operations before they started operating over the islands.

We were very glad to see them as we had already discovered that ground attack in wartime was not the fun that it is in peacetime! Mark flew 20 missions during the conflict and was responsible for a successful attack on a couple of helicopters near Mt Kent on 21st May, during which he was hit by small-arms fire. On another, seemingly uneventful, sortie on 10th June, he returned with F95 photos of two Argentine soldiers trying to take him out with MANPADs. Good debrief point!

Sad to loose you too soon, mate.

Mog
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Old 9th Sep 2021, 11:20
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Squadron Leader Mark Hare, who has died aged 66, flew RAF Harriers on operations during the Falklands War.

The son of an RAF group captain, Mark William James Hare was born in Tidworth on January 9 1955 and educated at Rugby School and King’s School, Worcester. He was awarded an RAF flying scholarship and gained his private pilot’s licence before he could drive. He was given a university cadetship to Southampton University where he graduated in Law, having served and flown with the University Air Squadron.

Hare entered the RAF College Cranwell, where he excelled, winning the sword of honour and five major prizes, including that for the best pilot.

After converting to the Harrier jump jet, Hare was posted in November 1979 to No 1 Squadron based at Wittering near Peterborough. The squadron’s role was to support forces on NATO’s northern and southern flanks and it regularly deployed to bases in northern Norway, operating from basic bases and in extreme weather.

During his time on No 1 Squadron Hare, together with his colleagues, was detached to the Harrier flight based at Belize to provide a deterrent against possible incursions by Guatemalan forces.

On April 8 1982, six days after the Argentine invasion of the islands, the RAF’s No 1 Squadron was ordered to prepare for operations from an aircraft carrier as attrition replacements for anticipated Sea Harrier combat losses. After an intensive period of pilot training, and an engineering programme to modify the Harrier GR.3s, the first aircraft headed south on May 3.

Hare was flying one of the first three aircraft to take off from St Mawgan in Cornwall. Using air-to-air refuelling from a Victor aircraft, he and a colleague reached Ascension Island after a 4,600-mile non-stop flight in their single-engine aircraft (the third aircraft had been forced to divert to Gambia).

After the arrival of further aircraft, they were embarked in the Atlantic Conveyor and set sail for the South Atlantic on May 8. By May 19 all the RAF Harriers had transferred to the carrier Hermes.

Flying as the No 2 to his flight commander, Hare flew his first operation on May 21, when they attacked an Argentine forward operating base near Mount Kent. He destroyed a Chinook helicopter on the ground, while the Harrier’s cannons damaged two other helicopters. His aircraft was hit by small-arms fire.

Over the following days he bombed Stanley Airport and shared in the destruction of a Puma helicopter on the ground. On May 26 he destroyed enemy guns at Goose Green. Returning in the afternoon to support 2 Parachute Regiment, his leader was shot down, ejected and avoided capture over the next three days.

During further attacks on Stanley Airport, his Harrier was damaged. He flew an armed reconnaissance mission searching for a land-based Exocet missile launcher and on July 11 he was flying No 2 to his commanding officer. They attacked gun positions at Moody Brook Barracks when shoulder-launched anti-aircraft missiles were fired against the two attacking Harriers.

On July 13 he flew his final mission when his leader dropped a [email protected] bomb on positions near Tumbledown and Hare followed up this attack by dropping bombs on enemy positions. The following day, the Argentine forces surrendered.

Hare had flown 22 operational missions, most against heavy anti-aircraft and small-arms fire and his aircraft had been damaged on a number of occasions.

No 1 Squadron’s Harriers were reconfigured with Sidewinder air-to-air missiles to supplement the Royal Navy’s Sea Harrier force. On July 4 they disembarked from Hermes and deployed to a site on Stanley Airport to provide air defence for the islands.

By the end of June, the original RAF Harrier pilots, including Hare, began their return journey home. For his services during the campaign, Hare was Mentioned in Despatches.

Six months after returning from the Falklands, Hare was posted to join No 3 Squadron flying from Gütersloh in Germany, where the squadron frequently deployed to operate from field sites in support of the 1st British Corps in the central region of Nato.

He was one of two pilots who regularly demonstrated the Harrier at European air shows and his outstanding ability as a Harrier pilot resulted in the award of the AFC at the end of his tour of duty in June 1986.

He was posted to the air staff at HQ Strike Command, a ground appointment he did not relish. He made strenuous efforts to return to flying – his campaign was taken up in the national press – but he remained at Strike Command “to progress his career”. He decided to seek voluntary retirement and left the RAF in April 1988.
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Old 9th Sep 2021, 13:08
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Originally Posted by Minnie Burner View Post
...During further attacks on Stanley Airport, his Harrier was damaged. He flew an armed reconnaissance mission searching for a land-based Exocet missile launcher and on July 11 he was flying No 2 to his commanding officer. They attacked gun positions at Moody Brook Barracks when shoulder-launched anti-aircraft missiles were fired against the two attacking Harriers.

On July 13 he flew his final mission when his leader dropped a [email protected] bomb on positions near Tumbledown and Hare followed up this attack by dropping bombs on enemy positions. The following day, the Argentine forces surrendered...
I assume this is lift and shift from the Telegraph. If so, they really need to get a better sub-editor...or maybe they just don't care about little things like accuracy and attention to detail...
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Old 9th Sep 2021, 16:22
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From The Telegraph

Squadron Leader Mark Hare, who has died aged 66, flew RAF Harriers on operations during the Falklands War.

On April 8 1982, six days after the Argentine invasion of the islands, the RAF’s No 1 Squadron was ordered to prepare for operations from an aircraft carrier as attrition replacements for anticipated Sea Harrier combat losses. After an intensive period of pilot training, and an engineering programme to modify the Harrier GR.3s, the first aircraft headed south on May 3.

Hare was flying one of the first three aircraft to take off from St Mawgan in Cornwall. Using air-to-air refuelling from a Victor aircraft, he and a colleague reached Ascension Island after a 4,600-mile non-stop flight in their single-engine aircraft (the third aircraft had been forced to divert to Gambia).

After the arrival of further aircraft, they were embarked in the Atlantic Conveyor and set sail for the South Atlantic on May 8. By May 19 all the RAF Harriers had transferred to the carrier Hermes.

Flying as the No 2 to his flight commander, Hare flew his first operation on May 21, when they attacked an Argentine forward operating base near Mount Kent. He destroyed a Chinook helicopter on the ground, while the Harrier’s cannons damaged two other helicopters. His aircraft was hit by small-arms fire.

Over the following days he bombed Stanley Airport and shared in the destruction of a Puma helicopter on the ground. On May 26 he destroyed enemy guns at Goose Green. Returning in the afternoon to support 2 Parachute Regiment, his leader was shot down, ejected and avoided capture over the next three days.

During further attacks on Stanley Airport, his Harrier was damaged. He flew an armed reconnaissance mission searching for a land-based Exocet missile launcher and on July 11 he was flying No 2 to his commanding officer. They attacked gun positions at Moody Brook Barracks when shoulder-launched anti-aircraft missiles were fired against the two attacking Harriers.

On July 13 he flew his final mission when his leader dropped a [email protected] bomb on positions near Tumbledown and Hare followed up this attack by dropping bombs on enemy positions. The following day, the Argentine forces surrendered.

Hare had flown 22 operational missions, most against heavy anti-aircraft and small-arms fire and his aircraft had been damaged on a number of occasions.

No 1 Squadron’s Harriers were reconfigured with Sidewinder air-to-air missiles to supplement the Royal Navy’s Sea Harrier force. On July 4 they disembarked from Hermes and deployed to a site on Stanley Airport to provide air defence for the islands.
Mark Hare and his Harrier jetBy the end of June, the original RAF Harrier pilots, including Hare, began their return journey home. For his services during the campaign, Hare was Mentioned in Despatches.

The son of an RAF group captain, Mark William James Hare was born in Tidworth on January 9 1955 and educated at Rugby School and King’s School, Worcester. He was awarded an RAF flying scholarship and gained his private pilot’s licence before he could drive. He was given a university cadetship to Southampton University where he graduated in Law, having served and flown with the University Air Squadron.

Hare entered the RAF College Cranwell, where he excelled, winning the sword of honour and five major prizes, including that for the best pilot.

After converting to the Harrier jump jet, Hare was posted in November 1979 to No 1 Squadron based at Wittering near Peterborough. The squadron’s role was to support forces on Nato’s northern and southern flanks and it regularly deployed to bases in northern Norway, operating from basic bases and in extreme weather.

During his time on No 1 Squadron Hare, together with his colleagues, was detached to the Harrier flight based at Belize to provide a deterrent against possible incursions by Guatemalan forces.

Six months after returning from the Falklands, Hare was posted to join No 3 Squadron flying from Gütersloh in Germany, where the squadron frequently deployed to operate from field sites in support of the 1st British Corps in the central region of Nato.

He was one of two pilots who regularly demonstrated the Harrier at European air shows and his outstanding ability as a Harrier pilot resulted in the award of the AFC at the end of his tour of duty in June 1986.

He was posted to the air staff at HQ Strike Command, a ground appointment he did not relish. He made strenuous efforts to return to flying – his campaign was taken up in the national press – but he remained at Strike Command “to progress his career”. He decided to seek voluntary retirement and left the RAF in April 1988.

He joined Monarch Airlines and first flew the Boeing 737 on European routes before transferring to the Airbus 320 and 321. He became the company’s senior pilot at Manchester, where he flew competency checks on all Monarch pilots operating from the airport.

Hare enjoyed walking and hang gliding in his younger days. He and his wife bought a small farm in North Wales where they kept sheep.

Mark Hare is survived by his wife Kathi, by their three daughters and a son, and by a daughter from an earlier marriage.
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Old 9th Sep 2021, 16:44
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Mark and I joined Southampton UAS together and had parallel paths through training. He was always a true character who everyone knew. His departure certainly is a reminder to those of his vintage of our mortality. RIP, mate.
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Old 10th Sep 2021, 01:45
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This is such very sad news! I had the great pleasure to know Mark very well during our time at Monarch, especially during the Berlin days. He will be remembered fondly by all who knew him.

On closer inspection of the Harrier pic above I noticed the glass of wine! That is the Mark I remember so well! R.I.P Mark.
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Old 10th Sep 2021, 07:52
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Saw the headline and thought 'Oh, no - surely not?' But alas. I remember Mark - and the other 1(F) Sqn - chaps with really happy memories from my time at Port Stanley immediately after the cessation of hostilities (I was in the vanguard of the REMFS) and ATC and 1 Sqn always got on really well. Mark was always welcome in the 'Twr' (such as it was!) and could tell a good yarn. Somewhere in the aviation pictorial archive is a snap Mark took of an Argentine soldier hefting a Blowpipe; said soldier has a look of - shall we say - bemusement on his face as he looks ACROSS at Mark's Harrier which someone I believe calculated was about 15 ft agl......
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Old 10th Sep 2021, 08:42
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Clearly a top bloke. So young - so sad.
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Old 10th Sep 2021, 09:45
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Had the pleasure of meeting Mark when I was a holding ‘Kev’ and he was a first tourist with 1(F)Sqn back in 1979. Mark was indeed a real character and great company. I thoroughly enjoyed my time with the guys and was happy to volunteer as duty driver for those epic nights out in Stamford. RIP Mark.
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Old 10th Sep 2021, 13:07
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Originally Posted by Downwind.Maddl-Land View Post
Saw the headline and thought 'Oh, no - surely not?' But alas. I remember Mark - and the other 1(F) Sqn - chaps with really happy memories from my time at Port Stanley immediately after the cessation of hostilities (I was in the vanguard of the REMFS) and ATC and 1 Sqn always got on really well. Mark was always welcome in the 'Twr' (such as it was!) and could tell a good yarn. Somewhere in the aviation pictorial archive is a snap Mark took of an Argentine soldier hefting a Blowpipe; said soldier has a look of - shall we say - bemusement on his face as he looks ACROSS at Mark's Harrier which someone I believe calculated was about 15 ft agl......
Blow pipe AND SA7, but both facing wrong way - see page 90
https://www.rafmuseum.org.uk/documen...rier-Story.pdf
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Old 10th Sep 2021, 13:18
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I'm glad you said page 90.
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Old 10th Sep 2021, 15:34
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Originally Posted by 212man View Post
Blow pipe AND SA7, but both facing wrong way - see page 90
https://www.rafmuseum.org.uk/documen...rier-Story.pdf
Probably taken during the same 'event' as that referred to above, attached should be the image I was referring to. Just look at the relative position of the rocks in the foreground!



Acknowledgements due to Paul Jackson's article 'Strike Force South', Air International, April 1983 edition.

Last edited by Downwind.Maddl-Land; 15th Sep 2021 at 17:30.
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Old 11th Sep 2021, 21:04
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I am truly sorry and not just a little shocked to read of Mark's death. Very sad indeed. We were on the same Flying Scholarship at Sywell aerodrome, near Northampton, in 1972 and occasionally bumped into one another during our flying careers. His father flew Mosquitos in WW2 and was the last station commander at RAF Pershore, now Throckmorton airfield. My condolences to Mark's family.
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Old 14th Sep 2021, 18:48
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Mark was an intelligent man, a great pilot, and a good friend. A good "cabin fellow" on HERMES, matched, perhaps, by another fellow Crab who had the misfortune to fly SHARs rather than proper Harriers doing the difficult tasks. Mark was as guilty as I (plus one other!!) in using the Captain's en-suite shower facility which was part of the cabin the three of us were using (one of his two cabins, I believe) before we were banned and the en-suite facility was locked down to save it from us. A bit petty, we thought!! But just one of the many enjoyments of life on HERMES in 1982!!

Mark flew many difficult and challenging missions, but he was never one to try for the easier option.

He was taken far too early at the age of just 66, but he leaves a wonderful family who are understandably devastated.

RiP Mark - it was good to have known you.

Last edited by ex-fast-jets; 15th Sep 2021 at 11:57.
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Old 18th Sep 2021, 10:24
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An entertaining colleague, excellent pilot and fine friend to whom I owe a debt of gratitude. My condolences to his family who have lost him far too early.
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