Mike joined the RAF from 6th form in December 1962 as a direct entrant AEO. He graduated from RAF Topcliffe in April 1964 and began a long career with the Victor. Mike deployed to Ascension Island in the first K2 wave on 18 April 1982, providing refuelling support for the Vulcan, Nimrod, Hercules, Harrier GR1s and Sea Harrier. In 1982 Mike was awarded the Queens Commendation for Valuable Service in the Air for his role on Black Buck 1. Mike was in the final Victor to leave Ascension Island on 10 June 1985 – some 3 years after the conflict had ended but personally flying during 10 detachments over 300 days on Hercules Air Bridge support. On leaving the tanker force in December 1985, Mike had completed over 5000 hours on the Victor Mk2.
This was turbulence at a level I had never experienced before