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Nairobi, Kenya
I an ex member of both 7 and 8 Squadron's of the Rhodesian war spending most of my operational time on Seven Squadron as a K Car gunner. I was credited for shooting down a fixed wing aircraft from a K Car on the 9 August 1979. This blog is from articles for research on a book which I HAVE HANDED THIS MANUSCRIPT OVER TO MIMI CAWOOD WHO WILL BE HANDLING THE PUBLICATION OF THE BOOK OF WHICH THERE WILL BE VERY LIMITED COPIES AVAILABLE Contact her on yebomimi@gmail.com The latest news is that the Editing is now done and we can expect to start sales and deliveries by the end of April 2011

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Monday, July 21, 2008

SQUADRON CHARACTERS

Kerry Fynn (pilot) killed in mid -air collision during a contact near Selukwe -an ex game ranger Kerry was a true Rhodesian and a good friend.
Flt Lt Kevin Pienke - a great guy excellent pilot and friend -Kevin left 7 Squadron and was killed on active service while doing a bombing run in a Canberra in Mocambique -his crash site was recently found and a small memorial service held -the story in Choppertech

Squadron Leader Harold Griffiths my Squadron O/C on joining 7 Squadron -he took us for our basic gunnery course together with John Blythe Wood at Kutanga bombing range -the only photo I have of him
W/O Geoff Dartnall my 7 Squadron W/O prior to Barry Ord taking over
Ray Bolton pilot, Ray was involved in the helicopter mid air collision just outside Selukwe during a contact with ZANLA terrorists and was the only crewmwn to have survived the crash -saved by his armoured seat and a ditch.
Ian Harvey -7 Squadron Flight Commander and instructor who held the most hours on Alouettes. Ian became Robert Mugabes helicopter pilot after the war. He was a mine of information about Rhodesia and Rhodesian military history and was great fun in the pub.


Flight Sergeant Butch Graydon one of the senior Techs when I joined 7 Squadron a good operator

Flight Sergeant Bert (Bulbous Bert) Keightley a good friend
Greg Todd a pilot and excellent operator in the bush

Fligh Sergeant Henry Jarvie was one of the great characters on 7 Squadron and kept everyone busy with all his antics. Henry was killed in action while on a Fireforce call -out with Norman Maasdorp in 1979.

Bill Sykes a pilot on 7 Sqn who wrote the book A Pride of Eagles

Flight Sergeant Doug Sinclair -Doug was in charge of me on my first bush trip the story in Choppertech

Nick "The Greek" Tselentis Choppertech looking like a big game hunter while on Fireforce ops with Support commando -Nick was a good friend and the two of us enjoyed many a winters night in the Airmens Mess at New Sarum enjoying a pint of Castle sitting near the fireplace in the bar and listening to his incredible collection of long playing records with another friend Rob O' Maker.

Pete Le Roux and Beaver Shaw -Inyanga Downs -I cant say that I enjoyed our stay at this Army Base as the browns were very into playing soldier and making us eat in different messes etc.. Our G Car had electrical problems while doing a Camp cruise organised by PB, I am wearing a new pair of Bata boots given to me by a dead ZANLA terrorist

Beaver Shaw, Pete Caborne, Rob Nelson and Johnny Jacobs Grand Reef 1977

An early picture of Dave Rowe who was an instructor on Seven Squadron by the time I had arrived -Dave was injured in the hand from ground fire while on operations and was assisted by his Tech Brian Warren in landing the helicopter, Brian manipulated the collective lever.



Roger Watt (above) 7 Sqn. pilot was flying with Rob Nelson when their helicopter was hit by ground fire by a group of terrorists they had been following up on. A tracer round ignited thier fuel tank resulting in an intense fire on board the helicopter, this resulted in Rob jumping out of the helicopter as Roger attempted to put the stricken helicopter down. Rob was killed and Roger survived with bad burns -this story is in Choppertech.


Trevor Baynham Chopper pilot of note -don't let the boyish looks here fool you!!!

Willie Knight -I did my first bush trip with Willie and was involved in the Battle of Bangala -this story where the SAS lost some good men is recorded in my book Choppertech.

Grand Reef -Keith "Pops" Rayne, Beaver Shaw, Mario Venutti and Monty Maughn about 1977

JR Blythe-Wood - early photograph JR was a K Car pilot of note and also flew Hawker Hunters with distinction. JR also flew in the Yellow Submarine operations in The Russian Front.

A younger version of Mike Mulligan -I love the blackboard!!!

Mark Jackson front with Chas Goatley wearing flak vest -Chas and I flew many missions together during the war, he was an excellent and very agressive operator -Chas and I were involved in shooting down the BDF Defender in 1979





Gary Carter killed in wirestrike accident with Paddy Bate and Major Bruce Snelgar 1979. Gary was my course 31LAR and also lived next door to me in Hatfield Salisbury.



Norman Maasdorp known to us as Bam Bam (below)


I will add on new characters as I get new material to publish

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I welcome comments from everyone on my book Choppertech.
I am interested especially on hearing from former ZANLA and ZIPRA combatants who also have thier story to tell.