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Air Commodore J J Witts (8020843/8020843F)

Jeremy John                b:  18 Jun 1950                       r: 2 Sep 2005                d: 3 Jun 2020

DSO – 29 Jun 1991, FRAeS, ADC

Act Plt Off: 15 Sep 1969, Plt Off: 8 Feb 1971, Fg Off: 26 Feb 1972, Flt Lt: 26 Aug 1975, Sqn Ldr: 1 Jan 1980, Wg Cdr 1Jul 1988, Act Gp Capt xx xxx xxxx, Gp Capt 1 Jul 1994, Act A/Cdre: 1 Jul 2000, A/Cdre:  1 Jan 2001

xx xxx 1968:              Flight Cadet, RAF College Cranwell

15 Sep 1969:             Appointed to a Permanent Commission (General List)

xx xxx xxxx:               Basic Flying Training, RAF College Cranwell

xx xxx xxxx:               Advanced Flying Training, No 5/6 FTS

xx xxx xxxx:               Vulcan Conversion Course, No 230 OCU

xx xxx 1972:               Pilot, No ? Sqn (Vulcan - Cyprus)

xx xxx xxxx:               Attended Buccanerr Conversion Course, No 237 OCU

xx xxx xxxx:               Pilot, No ? Sqn (Buccaneer - Laarbruch)

xx xxx xxxx:               Flight Commander, No ? Sqn (Buccaneer - Laarbruch)

xx xxx xxxx:               Attended RAF Staff College.

xx xxx xxxx:               Attended Tornado Conversion Course, TTTE

xx xxx xxxx:               Attended Tornado Weapons Training Course, TWCU

xx xxx 1989:              Officer Commanding,  No 31 Sqn

xx xxx xxxx:            Tornado Detachment Commander, Saudi Arabia.

xx xxx 1994:              Executive Officer to USAF Commander, Ramstein

xx xxx 1997:              Officer Commanding, RAF Northolt

xx xxx 2000:              Director Support Operations (Fixed Wing), HQ Defence Logistics Organisation.

  1 Jan 2001:              Air Staff, British Defence Staff, Washington.

10 Oct 2002:             Air Attache, Washington.


Citation for the award of the Distinguished Service Order.

“Wing Commander Jeremy John WITTS (8020843), Royal Air Force.

Wing Commander Jeremy John Witts arrived at Dhahran on 1 January 1991 with elements of his own Squadron, No. 31, and those of 9, 14, 17 and 27 Squadrons. He quickly moulded these various elements into a cohesive operational unit which was declared to the Air Commander just prior to the start of hostilities on 16 January 1991. He also exercised command of a reconnaissance element from No. II (AC) and No. XIII Squadrons which arrived in theatre on 12 January 1991. On 17 January 1991 he personally led the first night low level attack on the enemy airfield of Mudaysis only one hour after H hour. This attack was pressed home with great courage and determination, and despite heavy enemy surface to air missile and anti-aircraft artillery defences and degraded navigation equipment, his formation laid down their weapons with unerring accuracy. In the ensuing weeks Wing Commander Witts showed bravery of the highest order when leading 13 further raids into enemy territory. His courage and leadership of his own formation provided an outstanding example to his other formation leaders. His cool and measured performance under fire was inspirational, and his aircrew were similarly driven to emulate their

squadron commander. He insisted that he personally flew all attack profiles before other squadron aircrew should be allowed to do so. On 8 February 1991 he led an eight aircraft formation in a daylight raid against the Al Kut Petroleum Production Facility, and while the rest of his formation completed a level bombing attack from medium altitude, with great skill, determination and an utter disregard for his own safety, Wing Commander Witts dive bombed the heavily defended target and achieved direct hits. His exceptional flying skills and outstanding leadership in the air were complemented by the excellence of his performance on the ground. He personally monitored the progress of his formations, the integrity of their planning and the manner of the execution of their task.  His genuine concern and quiet encouragement of his young crews was fundamental in ensuring that when losses were suffered it did not affect morale.  Wing Commander Witts has led his squadron with consummate courage, outstanding flying skill, and in a manner that reflects the highest traditions of the Service.”

(London Gazette – 29 June 1991)

This page was last updated on 15/04/21

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