Air Vice Marshal Alan Reed AO RMYS is honoured to be presenting a special Pot, Parma & Chat on Friday April 23rd featuring retired Air Vice Marshal Alan Reed AO.
His family have prepared the following profile of his military career.
He has had a 37 year military career resulting in being promoted from Trainee pilot graduating as a Sergeant through to completing his military career as an Air Vice Marshal.
Alan’s career took him from flying the Lincoln (originally Lancaster Mk 4) on Maritime duties; fortunate not to be with his crew when they were killed on a mercy mission leaving Townsville for Brisbane with a seriously ill ‘Blue’ baby. The wreckage of the Lincoln was found on Mt Superbus the next morning, Alan (a junior pilot) was given the opportunity to get off the aircraft and when spotted at breakfast the next morning was almost considered a walking ghost having had ground crew see him climb aboard the doomed aircraft.
Further developments in aviation took him on the newest Australian Aircraft the Canberra bomber and he represented Australia flying around the world to the Nigerian Independence celebrations in 1960. In 1967 Alan was selected as an exchange pilot to the USAF flying the cutting edge jet the Phantom. His job as an Australian was to train American Pilots and Navigators on American aircraft to fight in an American war in the world of reconnaissance. In realising that he had limitations in training pilots to fly in combat he requested approval from both the Australian and USA governments to participate in the conflict in order to fulfill his training role better equipped. With approval given from both Governments he received an ‘Invitation to war’ as the US Government could not Order him to do so. We believe Alan is one of only a very few to ever be to be ‘Invited to a War’.
Subsequent postings included Command of a RAAF Phantom Squadron, Faculty member of the Joint Services Staff College, Senior flying officer of Australia’s cutting edge F111C and responsible for all air operations at Australia’s largest Air Base. Further postings took him on to CO of the degree conferring RAAF Academy, Air Attaché in Washington a critical role when Australia was starting to take delivery of the F18 Hornet. After promotion to Air Vice Marshal he commanded Support Command with a team of over 12,000 staff reporting to him.
Alan has been recognised by the Queen with a commendation of valuable service to the Air, Awarded the USAF Distinguished flying cross with Oak leaf cluster and appointed the Officer of the Order of Australia in 1989 in recognition of his contribution to the RAAF.
Alan also has flown many types of aircraft and is the only pilot known to have graduated on full tours from Lincolns, Canberra’s, Phantoms and through to the famous F111
He has also recently finished his second book ‘Invited to a War’
Not bad for a guy who had to leave school and get a job at 15.
Alan has been honoured by leading the Melbourne ANZAC parade previously and his topic will be reflecting on his Fathers war and his own war in the ANZAC tradition.