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Captain & Flt Lt Alexander "Thommy" R Thomson, 118 Sqn and 93 Sqn pilot.

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Ex-Captain Flt Lt Alexander R 'Thommy' Thomson

Born 12May33 - Died 30Jul17

Commissioned 17Dec53 promoted to Flt Lt 19Dec58 Retired 12May71

     Keith Piggott relates: "It is with sadness that Valerie Thomson informs us her beloved husband Alexander R. 'Thommy' Thomson died on 30 July 2017 at 06:30 in her arms.   He had suffered from severe Vascular Dementia and was not able to walk or sit up.   Val says "We had a short but most wonderful marriage, marriage of 8 short years, and were soul mates in every way".

     'Thommy' Thomson was born in Aberdeen in 1933, he joined the Royal Air Force in 1953, training on Provost T1 at Kirton Lindsey, Ternhill, then Vampires at Oakington where he was awarded his 'Wings' on 29 June 1955 and was posted to the new Hunter day fighter at 229 OCU RAF Chivenor in glorious Devon.

     'Thommy' flew all marks of Hunter, from F1 to DFGA9, first in Germany on 118 Sqn. and 93 Sqn. at RAF Jever - the Hunter's true heydays, the 'Jever Steam Laundry' is still legendary.   From Germany to Eastleigh on 208 Sqn. then to Khormaksar in Aden (1961-63).   Whilst serving in Germany he met Joanna; on returning to England they married and he became step-father to Martin.

     Thommy was senior flight commander on No.1(F)Sqn. (1963-65), in heady days of Gibraltar detachment in 1965, with boss David Brook, and fellow flight commander Jerry Seavers, he led formations for Gibraltar TV, and sea firing at RN towed targets off the Spanish Coast.   He initiated our ultra-low 50ft clearances to engage in weapons and combat training, all without loss.   He was lucky enough to remain in day and ground attack roles before a dreaded desk job at HQ 38 Group (1965-68), but he returned to Chivenor on 79 Sqn. Leaving the RAF on 12 May 1971.   Thommy's log books show him as 'above average' DFGA pilot and weapons instructor.   But log books don't show that he also was a very generous and gregarious man, didactic but firm too - his first-tourists can vouch for that.

     [A little known fact, Thommy was shy - he adopted the Hijab for No.1(F)Sqn. 1966 El Adam APC photograph.   I was lucky to serve under these three splendid flight commanders - Thommy, Jerry, and Al, reunited with boss David Brook at our RAF Cottesmore reunion.]

     When Thommy left the Royal Air Force he moved to Essex where he trained to be a primary school teacher at Saffron Walden.   His first teaching role was at the village school at Duxford - yes with constant reminders of flying days.   He then moved to North Yorkshire and taught at a school in Redcar.   He later became involved in Camphill Village Trust and taught at Botton village school.   Through this he met an elderly lady called Miss Grace Sharman and he and his late wife Joanna cared for Miss Sharman until her death at the age of 99.   He then taught at a primary school in Middlesborough.   Throughout this time he became very close to Joanna's family and he became a very loved uncle to Richard, Susan, Jillian, Joanne, Jackie and Cathie.   After Joanna's death in 2007 he met Valerie and they married in 2009.   Thommy moved to Humberston in Lincolnshire and became a very loved husband, step-father and Grandpa."

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