It is with deep regret that the MOD must confirm the death of Sergeant Gary Paul Quilliam RAF, who was killed following the crash of a RAF Nimrod MR2 aircraft in Afghanistan on Saturday 2 September 2006.
Sergeant Gary Quilliam, 42, was originally from Manchester. Gary, or “Q” as we all knew him, was in the best sense of the word a ‘character’. His dry wit, sense of humour and smile were his trademark, and all went towards making him an undoubtedly warm and lovely person.
Gary was an experienced SNCO who had recently returned to the job he loved - on the Front Line, in his third tour of duty on the Nimrod MR2.
Gary was an extremely popular individual not just on the Squadron, but especially amongst his many friends in the RAF sub-aqua fraternity. This was the sport in which he excelled, sharing his experience with countless people over his years as a Kinloss club instructor.
A devoted and committed family man, he leaves behind his wife, Rayna, and daughter, Angela.
Shortly after the incident RAF Kinloss Station Commander Group Captain Chris Birks said:
I am very deeply saddened about the deaths of twelve air crew from Royal Air Force Kinloss in a Nimrod accident over Afghanistan. All twelve were from Number 120 Squadron based here at Kinloss. All were long serving and experienced air crew and were known to me personally.
As well as first class personnel these were colleagues and friends of myself and my other personnel. The station is in mourning. The main priority now is to provide support for the families of those lost, their friends and colleagues. Our thoughts and prayers are with them.
Officer Commanding 120 Squadron, based at RAF Kinloss, Wing Commander Martin Cannard added:
120 Squadron has suffered a profound loss. We have lost good friends and colleagues, many known personally to us over many years. I have been humbled by the commitment and determination of all of my people to do all that they can for those that have lost loved ones and friends and this will be our sole focus in the coming days.