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Irish Air Corps Centenary Veterans Day

Earlier today the Irish Air Corps celebrated a special centenary Veterans Days in Casement Aerodrome, Baldonnel.

Earlier today the Irish Air Corps celebrated a special centenary Veterans Days in Casement Aerodrome, Baldonnel. As part of the event the Royal Air Force 'Battle of Britain Memorial Flight’, accompanied by the Irish aerobatic display team 'The Silver Swallows', flew in formation across Dublin City and landed at Casement Aerodrome.  

The VVIP guest for the event was proud Irish man, Group Captain (Retired) John ‘Paddy’ Hemingway (Distinguished Flying Cross), ​a Battle of Britain Pilot who flew with distinction during World War 2. In Casement Aerodrome, John was reunited a Hurricane Aircraft, the same type he flew in WW2. On its arrival, the Hurricane came to a stop and powered up its engines so that the wartime pilot could see, hear and smell what he called his 'office' throughout WW2.  John is a resident in South Co. Dublin and celebrated his 103rd birthday this week.

The Chief of Staff of the Irish Defence Forces, Lieutenant General Seán Clancy and Royal Air Forces Deputy Commander Operations Sir Rich Knighton and General Officer Commanding the Irish Air Corps, Brigadier General Rory O'Connor were in attendance along with a range of other invited guests and veterans. 
Speaking at the event General Officer Commanding of the Irish Air Corps Brigadier General Rory O'Connor said:  "Seeing the iconic and historic Lancaster and Hurricane flying in Irish skies was very special. The arrival of the aircraft serves as a reminder that the Irish Air Corps flew Hurricanes during the Emergency. I was also honoured to host Group Captain Hemingway and be there when he was reunited with his World War 2 aircraft type. Today we are both proud Irishmen".
Royal Air Forces Deputy Commander Capability, Air Marshal Sir Rich Knighton said: "Group Captain Paddy Hemingway, the last of The Few is a true inspiration and hi accomplishments are as relevant today as they were more than 80 years ago. As a fighter pilot during the Battle of Britain, he defended the skies over the UK daily, much as our typhoons pilots do today. He fought bravely to uphold our values and way of life in the face of tyranny, laying the foundation for the way we deliver collective Air Defence through NATO to deter those who would do us harm. Paddy deserves our deep gratitude for all he did to preserve the freedoms we now enjoy".