AN RAF Group Captain, who lives in Grantham, has been recognised in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours List.
Former Wing Commander Richard Barrow, 43, was awarded the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in recognition of his contribution to the development and deployment of the Sentinel aircraft, which is used in intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition and reconnaissance (ISTAR).
The aircraft yielded unprecedented success when it was used in two recent RAF operations, Herrick and Ellamy, in Afghanistan and Libya.
Grp Cpt Barrow, who is now the Military Assistant to the Director General Military Aviation Authority at the MOD in London, commanded 5 (Army Cooperation) Squadron, which used the airborne intelligence system, between April 2009 and June 2011 when serving at RAF Waddington.
He said: “I am delighted to receive this prestigious award, which should be viewed as a reflection of the tireless and continuing efforts of the soldiers, sailors and airmen of 5(AC) Squadron.
“Sentinel remains an essential capability that delivered battle winning information in Libya and continues to provide campaign changing intelligence in Afghanistan. It has been my pleasure and honour to serve with this fine squadron.”
RAF Waddington Station Commander Group Captain Al Gillespie said: “Group Captain Barrow has been an exceptional front line commander and his contribution to the development of Sentinel and the United Kingdom’s Combat ISTAR capability has undoubtedly been decisive.
“His outstanding leadership of this joint squadron under the most extreme pressure of enduring support to both Operation Herrick and Operation Ellamy deserves the highest recognition.”
Chief Technician John Kirk, who also serves at RAF Waddington, was also honoured with the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE).