F/Sgt David Jones

David Jones left the Royal Air Force in 1989, having joined in 1955. During those years he set height records for parachute jumps and much more.

FTR Dave Jones 01Now Dave finds himself in his mid-80s in a care home trying to get home to his wife and he needs help.

But let me continue to tell you more about Dave, whom I met in the late 90s, when he rolled up on a Harley after riding down to Granada. Pulling out a pipe as soon as he had parked, he could have just finished a publicity spot for a tobacco company.

He had come a long way, not only in kilometres crossing Spain, but also in years, from the jungle of Borneo as a young airman during those crisis years to hurtling down through the air, grinning, holding onto a tray with teacups and teapot attached to it. The teapot stunt was a ‘piece of cake’ compared to jumping from 40,000 feet to set a height record – his oxygen mask had frozen up with spittle and he nearly blacked out.

He also invented the now universally used system for the Ram Air Parachute, static-line, deployment mechanism – the RAF gave him 3,000 pounds for it but kept the patent. After all, the forces pay you for 24/7 employment so anything you make during their time is technically theirs.

He picked up his fair share of gongs: the Air Force Medal in 1977. Air Commodore Brownlow wrote a letter of congratulations for “an exceptional practical contribution to a military parachute development and evaluation” during his years served at Boscombe Down. Yes, you certainly get noticed for jumping out of perfectly serviceable aeroplanes! He also received the Meritorious Service Medal (MSM), the Long Service and Good Conduct (LSGC) and the General Service Medal (GSM) for serving in Borneo and another two that I shall have to look up.

Now, you would think that a man who served his country many long years, spending an uncommon amount of time hurtling towards Earth hoping that the pack on his back will successfully spawn something suitable to avoid certain death, would be enjoying his last years in the company of his wife, at home, a good pipe and a garden to potter around.

Unfortunately, he is in the later stages of a degenerative disease that has left him with little ability to communicate or move and consequently he is in a care home. Yet what he wants is to be at home with his wife for the little time that he has left, because this time, there is no ripcord to avoid fast approaching death.

FTR Dave Jones AppealThe care home he is in – whose name I will not publish here – is under investigation. When his wife, who turns 70 this year, visits, it is to find him with yet another head injury.

She desperately wants him home but she cannot cope by herself but can do so with just a couple of hours a day, with somebody to look after Dave, whilst she shops or gets his medicine, and it is only Monday to Friday, which is why, out of desperation she has started a gofundme campaign to pay for coming to do precisely this.

The Covid pandemic made things worse, as it did for everybody but if you have served, or might even remember Dave from when you did, then please contact his wife, Bo, through me, Martin, at the Seaside Gazette, and I will pass on any questions or suggestions you have. You can also go make a small donation via the gofundme.com.

(News: F/Sgt David Jones Request)

  7 comments for “F/Sgt David Jones

  1. Bill Curran
    February 8, 2022 at 9:03 am

    RAFBF should help. Also, RBL can send in a Professional Living Advisor to assess his at home needs and social care would take over based on the outcome.

  2. Rachael
    February 7, 2022 at 9:20 pm

    RAF Benevolent Fund helps ex RAF in cases like this.
    Telephone: 0300 102 1919.
    That will be a UK number.

  3. paul eddy
    February 7, 2022 at 6:39 pm

    is there a RAFA association near him GET ON TO THEM hes xRAF

  4. February 7, 2022 at 9:21 am

    Bill: Yes, of course, and thank you; I will pass this on to his wife.

  5. February 7, 2022 at 8:56 am

    Martin, she could contact SSAFA https://www.ssafa.org.uk/ they are good at these things. I can share the story to Veterans 4 Veterans on faceache as I am sure they will come up with lots of others that could help. Are you ok with that?

  6. February 5, 2022 at 11:28 am

    Billy: They are in the UK (Amesbury). She has been on to he Canopy Club (he was a member of the RAF Parachute Display Team and they meet up at Brize Norton every year. What used to be RAF Old Sarum are setting up a display dedicated to him, as well, although Dave probably won’t live to see it. Thanks for the advice, 😉

  7. Billy
    February 5, 2022 at 9:42 am

    Martin, may I suggest his wife contacts the Royal British Legion in Nerja and also I believe there is an active RAF Association in Benalmadena. Those two organisations should either be able to assist and/or offer some short term aid while a longer term plan with other Veteran’s charities can be found.

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