Air of Authority - A History of RAF Organisation
John Alexander b: 25 Jul 1937 r: 16 Jun 2000 d: 11 Nov 2020
KBE - xx xxx 1991, CSJ – xx xxx xxxx, MB – xx xxx 1961, ChB – xx xxx 1961, ACGI – xx xxx xxxx, MRAeS – xx xxx xxxx,
Flt Lt: 3 Nov 1963 [2 Dec 1962], Sqn Ldr: 2 Dec 1967, Wg Cdr: 2 Dec 1975, Gp Capt: 1 Jul 1985, A/Cdre: 2 Apr 1989, AVM: 1 Jan 1992, AM: 24 Feb 1997.
3 Nov 1963: Appointed to a Short Service Commission (3 + 4) in the Medical Branch (Supplementary List)
10 Mar 1965: Appointed to a Permanent Commission (General List) in the Medical Branch
xx xxx xxxx: Medical Officer, RAF Coningsby
xx xxx xxxx: Medical Officer, RAF Tengah
xx xxx 1967: Attended No 1 Course, RAF Institute of Aviation Medicine
xx xx 1970: Attached to Edwards Air Force Base, California (assigned to an American unit operating the Lockheed U2 “Dragon Lady” reconnaissance aircraft.)
xx xxx 1973: Senior Medical Officer, RAF Valley
xx xxx 197?: Senior Medical Officer, RAF Lossiemouth
xx xxx xxxx: Command Flight Medical Officer, HQ Strike Command
xx xxx 1987: Officer Commanding, RAF Hospital, Ely.
xx xxx 1989: Principal Medical Officer, RAF Germany
xx xxx 1992: Principal Medical Officer, Strike Command
1991 - 2000: Honorary Physician to the Queen
xx xxx 1994: Director General RAF Medical Services
24 Feb 1997: Surgeon General Defence Medical Services
John Baird was born in Blantyre, Nyasaland Protectorate, where his father was a doctor at the Church of Scotland Mission. Initially attending school in Southern Rhodesia, he later attended Merchiston Castle School in Edinburgh, before starting medical school at Edinburgh University in 1955.
After graduating he undertook residencies at the Western General Hospital, Edinburgh, and then did a six-month tour of longhouses along the Baram River in Sarawak. During this time he was involved in setting up a casualty clearing station in the small town of Marudi. As a result of being involved in the rescue of patients during severe flooding, following a typhoon along the Sarawak coast, during which he was often flown in RAF light transports and helicopters, he decided to join the RAF.
After retiring he was a Deputy Lieutenant in Cambridgeshire, patron of the Far East Prisoners of War Association, and served on the Royal Society of Medicine’s United Services Committee as well as the Royal Aeronautical Society Aviation Medicine Group. He was a Fellow of numerous learned bodies.
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