Aircrewman reaches 3000 hours flying
A Royal Navy Chief Aircrewman serving on Operations has clocked up a significant milestone in his flying career.
Chief Petty Officer Jeffery “Ronnie” Barker serving with 814 Naval Air Squadron (The Flying Tigers) in the Gulf region is celebrating after recording 3000 flying hours in his Log book, whilst away from his home base of Royal Naval Air Station Culdrose. Equivalent to 125 days in the air!
CPO “Ronnie” Barker joined the Royal Navy in October 1987 as ‘Seaman (Radar) Barker’, before transferring to the Fleet Air Arm in June 1990, commencing Flying Training on the Sea King HAS Mk 6 at 706 NAS at Culdrose. His first Front Line Service was on 819NAS based at HMS gannet at RNAS Prestwick in Scotland followed by the first of two frontline tours with 820NAS once again back in the West Country.
During his time on 820 NAS he was involved in Operation Grapple in the formerYugoslaviain 1992, Operation Palliser off the West coast of Africa inSierra Leoneand Operation Barwood, which provided much needed Humanitarian relief to the Flood victims ofMozambiquein 2000.
In 1998 “Ronnie” became a Qualified Aircrewmen Instructor and went on to gain his “A2 Instructor category” in early 2003, immediately prior to his conversion from the Sea King to Merlin Mk 1. He has served as an instructor on several occasions with both 810NAS and 824NAS. In more recent times “Ronnie” has served on 829 02 Flight, onboard HMS Monmouth where he was privileged enough to complete a full nine month global tour in 2007.
Promoted to CPO in 2008, he has been employed on 829NAS HQ and in the role of Ops at Merlin Force HQ. He joined 814NAS in Sept 2012 and is expected to join Naval Flying Standards Flight at the end of 2014.
“I have had an extremely varied and fulfilling career as a Pinger”, said CACMN Ronnie. “I’m very proud that in this day and age, it is comparatively rare for an Anti-submarine Warfare Aircrewman to pass this milestone. It has been a significant achievement in my life”.