Flight Lt. Christopher Gordon, a Royal Air Force (RAF) Chinook pilot, has received the Distinguished Flying Cross for rescuing British and Afghan troops during a major contact with the Taliban in Helmand Province, Afghanistan. Flying one of two Chinooks, escorted by a Boeing Apache attack helicopter, his mission had required the insertion of the troops into a known insurgent “safe haven.” However, due to heavy fire, the subsequent extraction of the ground troops initially had to be abandoned.
Intelligence reports indicated that the Taliban were preparing for a major assault on the friendly ground forces once the Apache was forced to break contact to refuel and rearm. Gordon persuaded his crews to make a final rescue attempt before this happened, resulting in him placing the Chinook in a position to protect the troops from Taliban fire while they boarded the aircraft. Read the full story at www.rotorandwing.com
Rotary and fixed-wing pilot Jeanette Eaton recently joined the board of the Eastern Regional Helicopter Council. Currently regional manager for North Atlantic sales at Bell Helicopter Textron, Eaton is a member of other various organizations that promote women in aviation, including Whirly Girls, the Ninety-Nines and Woman in Aviation, as well as the Northeast Pilots Group, AOPA and the New England Helicopter Council. Eaton joined Bell in 2004 and previously worked at Sikorsky Aircraft in Stratford, Conn.
Scott’s Bell 47 has named Neil Marshall chief operating officer. He was the general manager of the company during the start-up phase following Scott’s acquisition of the Bell 47 type certificate. Marshall also served as program director for the Bell 429 during its development from 2008 to 2010.
CW4 Stormy Ripley, senior safety officer for the Combat Aviation Brigade, 1st Armored Division, received the Order of Saint Michael and Legion of Merit during a retirement ceremony following 27 years of active duty service in the U.S. Army. She served as a Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk pilot for 21 years.
Cobham has promoted David Ashton to executive vice president of business development and technology, and Julian Hellebrand to executive vice president of lifecycle management (LCM) and program management. Ashton was previously vice president of Cobham’s Tactical Communications & Surveillance (TC&S) unit, and will continue to serve in the role until the company hires a replacement. Hellebrand was formerly chief of staff to the CEO and group director of communications.
Fargo, N.D.-based Spectrum Aeromed has appointed Chad Chad Kost to a newly created position of chief operating officer. He served in a consulting role for brief period before joining Spectrum Aeromed full time, and his previous experience includes 17 years in the banking industry.
FlightSafety International has promoted John Van Maren to vice president of simulation and George Brady (left) to director of product support and simulator operations. The company has also appointed Greg Arend director of commercial programs for its design, manufacturing and support complex in Tulsa, Okla.