It all began just about a year ago when a lady in England called Sarah enquired on Pprune “Does anyone remember my Dad?” It took a while to get going, but now Sarah knows more about her Dad than she probably expected, and certainly has a whole new understanding of the remarkable circumstances of his very sad death. It turned out to be yet another tale in the inexhaustible history of the Avro Vulcan.As 2007 rolled on, Sarah found ex-servicemen who knew the two crew who did survive the crash of the type in which her father died, and in particular the astonishing story of the captain’s survival. Somebody pointed her at the National Archives for the full details.
Everything then went quiet for a few months, but then yesterday somebody else joined the thread with a bit more info, which encouraged an earlier participant to come up with a Google Earth image of the crash site – that shows just enough faint evidence of the accident to make your skin tingle. And I was pleased to be able to contribute Flight’s account of the coroner’s outspoken remarks at the time.
Neither Sarah nor anyone else in the thread seems to have mentioned it, but according to her Pprune profile she was born on 14 January 1968 – which means she was 16 days old when her father died.
Remarkably, Sarah’s Dad’s squadron – IX Sqn RAF - still exists and is flying Tornadoes from RAF Marham in eastern England. One of the Ppruners has suggested that a four-ship overflying the accident location at the accident time of 12:30 on the 40th anniversary in a couple of weeks would be appropriate. Hard to disagree with that.