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RIP Mark Long

We are sad to announce that Squadron Leader Mark Long (201 IOTC) was killed on 25th May 2024 when his Spitfire crashed near RAF Coningsby.

Mark was born in Bury St Edmunds and graduated Initial Officer Training in 2003 before being sent to RAF Linton-on-Ouse to fly the Tucano, gaining his ‘wings’ in 2003.

His Advanced Flying Training was on the Hawk and he was selected to remain on 208(R) Squadron to take on the role of an Instructor. Mark later converted to the Harrier GR7/9 and was posted to 1(F) Sqn RAF Cottesmore. He was the last RAF Harrier pilot qualified to conduct operations off an aircraft carrier.

 In 2012, Mark joined the Typhoon Force at RAF Coningsby and in 2016, he was the Typhoon Display Pilot with his primary role teaching student pilots.

Alongside these instructional duties, Mark was also doing his share on Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) duties, both in the UK and in the British Forces South Atlantic Islands (Falklands Islands), and additionally conducting QRA duties whilst on Baltic Air Policing Operations in Lithuania. Also, of course, Mark was flying for the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (BBMF) and was to be the next OC.

Mark L 1.JPG
RIP Mark Long: News

“In life, we are occasionally privileged to meet incredible people like Mark. Mark touched the hearts of everyone that he met, always prioritising the needs of others before himself. The epitome of a military fighter pilot, he personified the very best of the Royal Air Force and the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight. We were lucky to have him as part of the team and part of our BBMF family. Always a vision of calm, Mark faced life’s obstacles with a wry smile, a knowing nod and a pint of tea. Above all, he was a devoted husband and a proud father. Whilst words alone cannot adequately convey our loss, he will remain forever “the best boss that BBMF never had”."

Sqn Ldr Mark Sugden,  OC BBMF

RIP Mark Long: Quote
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