Airborne Engineers Association

Roll of Honour



Ian Thomson


Ian passed away on 2nd November 2010 after a long battle with emphysema at the age of 76. He left behind his wife Maureen, three children and five grandchildren.

Ian was born and brought up in the north-east of Edinburgh. Although quite bright academically he left school at 15 and followed his father into the joinery trade. During his apprenticeship he found time to join what was then 2 Troop of 300 Sqn, 131 Indep Para RE (TA). So on being conscripted it was natural — but most unlike the Army — he was posted to 9 Sqn. Ian served from 1955-57 and was with the Sqn in Cyprus and Suez during that period. One of the first people a fresh-faced Jimmy Simpson met in the Sqn was Ian when he issued him with his kit!

On being demobbed Ian returned to Edinburgh where, apart from a short spell working in Libya, he remained for the rest of his life. He resumed work in the joinery trade and finished his career working in that capacity for John Lewis. He also rejoined 300 Sqn where he was involved in many escapades over which a discreet veil will be drawn.

In later life Ian became a bit of a Francophile but with good Scottish thrawnness refused to speak a word of French despite spending many holidays there. He was also a keen bowler and even when his illness prevented him playing still supported his club on the social side and was a mainstay of the quiz nights.

Ian was one of the nine members present at the inaugural meeting of the AEA in Scotland and continued to be a regular at our bi-monthly meetings. A feature of our meetings used to be Ian with his oxygen bottle.

Emphysema may have taken him in the end but he put up stiff resistance — your correspondent remembers him turning up at his home for some AEA related New Year festivities armed with said oxygen bottle along with copious bottles of Beck's.

Farewell friend — you will be missed.



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