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RAF personnel involved in Tornado incident named

Following confirmation that one crew member has died and two remain missing, presumed dead, after an incident in the Moray Firth area involving two Tornado GR4 aircraft from RAF Lossiemouth on Tuesday, it is with great sadness that the Ministry of Defence must confirm the identities of the three personnel.

Squadron Leader Samuel Bailey, Flight Lieutenant Hywel Poole and Flight Lieutenant Adam Sanders, all of XV (Reserve) Squadron based at RAF Lossiemouth (All rights reserved.)
Squadron Leader Samuel Bailey, Flight Lieutenant Hywel Poole and Flight Lieutenant Adam Sanders, all of XV (Reserve) Squadron based at RAF Lossiemouth (All rights reserved.)

Defence Secretary Philip Hammond announced the details of the crew members today in the House of Commons.

Mr Hammond said:

I am sure the House will wish to join me in paying tribute to the crew from XV (Reserve) Squadron, based at RAF Lossiemouth, who were involved in the Tornado GR4 aircraft incident on Tuesday: Flight Lieutenant Hywel Poole who was killed, and Squadron Leader Samuel Bailey and Flight Lieutenant Adam Sanders who are still missing and must be presumed dead.

My thoughts - and, I am sure, those of the entire House - are with their loved ones at this difficult time, and with the fourth member of the squadron involved in the incident, who is currently in a serious but stable condition in hospital.

Squadron Leader Samuel Edward Bailey BEng (Hons)

Squadron Leader Samuel Edward Bailey was born in Nottingham on 23 June 1976. He completed an aeronautical engineering degree in 1998 at the University of Hertfordshire and commenced RAF Officer Training in February the following year.

Having successfully completed navigator training, he joined the Tornado Force in August 2001, serving on XIII Squadron at RAF Marham, where he deployed on operations over Iraq. He then joined XV (Reserve) Squadron as an instructor in 2004, serving on operations in Afghanistan.

Officer Commanding XV (Reserve) Squadron, Wing Commander Jonathon Moreton, said:

Squadron Leader Samuel Bailey, XV (Reserve) Squadron
Squadron Leader Samuel Bailey, XV (Reserve) Squadron [Picture: via MOD]

After an enormously successful front line tour of duty on XIII Squadron, Sam joined the instructor cadre on XV (Reserve) Squadron in 2004. He excelled in the role and was quickly recognised as a talented mentor and trusted supervisor.

His performance earned him promotion to Squadron Leader in 2010 and, after a tour of duty in Afghanistan, he returned to XV (Reserve) Squadron as a Flight Commander. He had quickly established himself as one of my most trusted instructors and flight commanders.

He touched all the parts of the squadron; an immensely likeable character and professional aviator, he will be sorely missed. Sam was fully committed to all aspects of Service life; however, he valued his family time the most.

The squadron’s and my thoughts are with his wife Fiona and young daughter Erin at this immensely difficult time. This great loss will be felt intensely by all who knew him.

Flight Lieutenant Hywel Tomos Poole BEng (Hons)

Flight Lieutenant Hywel Poole, XV(Reserve) Squadron
Flight Lieutenant Hywel Poole, XV(Reserve) Squadron [Picture: via MOD]

Flight Lieutenant Hywel Tomos Poole was born on 22 April 1984 in Bangor and was educated locally. Whilst at school he was a member of the Welsh National and British National Sailing Squads and became a RYA Dinghy Instructor.

He then went on to read Naval Architecture at Southampton University where he was also a member of the University Air Squadron, graduating from RAF Officer Training on 16 October 2006. He successfully completed basic and advanced flying training and was selected for training on the Tornado GR4, arriving at RAF Lossiemouth in November 2011.

He had recently commenced the penultimate phase of the Conversion Course.

Officer Commanding XV (Reserve) Squadron, Wing Commander Jonathon Moreton, said:

Flight Lieutenant Adam Sanders, XV (Reserve) Squadron
Flight Lieutenant Adam Sanders, XV (Reserve) Squadron [Picture: via MOD]

Flight Lieutenant Hywel Poole had an outgoing personality, was universally liked by his colleagues, and was an enthusiastic member of my squadron and the Royal Air Force.

Displaying a natural talent for flying the Tornado, he quickly established himself on the squadron as a very capable and confident pilot, which, coupled with his keen sense of humour and engaging character, made him a very popular student on the squadron.

Outside the squadron, he dedicated much of his personal time to others; he mentored other station personnel who aspired to gain a commission and would always volunteer to raise money for station charities, including Help for Heroes.

An infectious personality, always cheerful, friendly and immensely likeable, Hywel will be greatly missed by all. My thoughts are with his family and friends at this incredibly difficult time.

**Flight Lieutenant Adam Sanders **

Flight Lieutenant Adam Sanders was born on 24 November 1984. He was educated at Scarisbrick Hall School where he was captain of the cross-country and cricket teams before undertaking higher education at King George V College, Southport.

In his spare time, before joining the RAF, he was a member of the Air Training Corps, achieving the rank of Cadet Flight Sergeant. After graduating from RAF Officer Training in September 2004 he excelled during flying training and he was selected to instruct other pilots to fly the Hawk.

At the end of his instructional tour in 2012, he moved to XV (Reserve) Squadron, RAF Lossiemouth, to undergo Tornado GR4 conversion training.

Officer Commanding XV (Reserve) Squadron, Wing Commander Jonathan Moreton, said:

Flight Lieutenant Adam Sanders was a talented pilot who was recognised early on in his RAF career for his flying ability and professionalism; so much so that, upon completion of his Advanced Flying Training on the Hawk T1, he was specially selected to become an instructor on the aircraft.

After arriving on XV (Reserve) Squadron, he continued to demonstrate very high standards and a real enthusiasm toward flying the Tornado GR4.

I was impressed with his commitment to the squadron; he was a well-liked, hardworking and an enthusiastic individual. He had enormous potential as both a pilot and officer.

Adam was looking forward to joining 617 Squadron after completion of the Operational Conversion Course; I am sure that the loss of this capable and much-admired pilot will be keenly felt by all on my squadron and the Royal Air Force community at large. Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this difficult time.

Additional tributes can be found on the RAF website - see Related Links.