Petty Officer Aircrewman
K. S. CASEY
846 Squadron Fleet Air Arm
Ben, as he was known to his family, was born on the 23rd January 1956 at Pailton near Rugby. Kevin Stuart Casey was the only son of Dennis and Margaret Casey. His father Dennis has sadly passed away and Margaret lives with her daughter Kim and her two grand daughters, Sophie and Charlotte, in Straford on Avon.
Ben was brought up in Long Lawford near Rugby and he attended Long Lawford Primary School then Newbold High school, his main hobbies were football and cross country running. He joined the Navy on the 31st October 1972 as an aircraft mechanic and was posted to RNAS Culdrose where he met his future wife, Elly. She was duty Wren and had to issue his bedding; they became an "item" within a few months. He joined 820 Sqadron on HMS Ark Royal, and before sailing he proposed. Within a month of his return, he and Elly were married and they started married life at Culdrose.
In February 1976, Ben went to HMS Daedalus to start his flying training to become a helicopter crewman, followed by further training at RNAS Culdrose and HMS Osprey. Elly, still serving, had been promoted to Petty Officer and was able to join him at Osprey. His first draft after being presented with his wings in September 1977 was to HMS Nubian as a missile aimer on a Wasp flight. In November 1977 he disembarked from Nubian on a Friday and left on the following Monday on board HMS Alacrity. He was not told where the ship was going nor for how long, but it was to the Falkland Islands as part of Operation Journeyman to forestall a possible Argentine invasion.
Ben remained with the Alacrity flight until he joined 772 Squadron in January 1979 to fly on Search and Rescue operations. He completed his Petty Officer's Aircrewmans course in March 1980 and continued to serve on 772 Squadron until July 1980. He then joined 707 Squadron in September 1980 for his Commando course, on completion of which he joined 846 Squadron flying in Sea King Mk 4's from HMS Hermes.
On the night of 23rd April 1982, Ben became the first casualty of the Falklands War when his Sea King crashed into the sea, in the dark, in bad weather.