Air Mshl KJ ‘Max’ Mathews RIP



Like the rest of the Marut family, was shocked to hear the tragic news of Max passing away two days ago.

Have memories of him from the Jodhpur days of the early ’80s, where I recollect a quiet, soft spoken gentle young person. Our paths crossed many, many years later at the first Marut get together at Pavanika in Dec 09. By then he was the second senior most serving Marut  officer, after Pramod Athawale. Yet he was the same – quiet, soft spoken and gentle – to which one could add a liberal dose of humility. Interacting with him was a pleasure. After that get together Max was instrumental in getting the Jodhpur do organised, thanks to the fact that he was then the Commodore Commandant of 10 Sqn based there and did all the heavy lifting.

What struck me most about Max was his brief speech at Jodhpur. Where all else were recalling their Marut days and the fun of the past & the present, Max made us aware of his immense kindness and sensitivity towards others. His talk was focussed on those retired officers who could not make it to the venue, maybe because some were not as fortunate as the rest of us. It was Max who reminded of us our duty to help those of our lot who were not as fortunate. That told me all I wanted to know about the man.

Max was also the Chief Guest at the Bangalore celebrations in June 2011. Those few days were the last I saw of him. We spoke a few times thereafter but it will always be my regret that after his retirement, I often thought of giving him a call and just shoot the breeze him with him for a bit. Alas I never did. Left it too late. He will be missed.

Our heartfelt condolences to Mrs Mathews and the family and God give them the strength to bear this heart wrenching parting. Rest in peace Max.









7 Responses to Air Mshl KJ ‘Max’ Mathews RIP

  1. MS Pradeesh says:

    I have not met Mr. Max. It was a mail that I as an Airman send to “The Week” magazine that got us connected by cosmic sense and ever since I have been hearing about him and following him. Adieu sir. Like always u will be watching over me from heaven. Thanks for all your good faith in your men..I am sure they will never let u down.

  2. Dara says:

    On email:

    Very very sad news. An exceptional officer in every respect. May His Soul Rest in Peace & May the LORD Give strength to his family to bear his loss. GOD BLESS – Sandy

  3. Dara says:

    Received on email:
    May he RIP. A very well liked & admired person.

    Girish Kumar

  4. Dara says:

    Received from Anil Mathur on email:

    Extremely shocking !! Just cant get over it. I joined the Marut Club just 6 months behind him, in 10 Sqn. Forever helpful and cheerful. my deep condolences go out to the bereaved family. Max, Rest in Peace.
    Anil Kalpana

  5. Ravi Burli says:

    Zindagi badi honi chaheye, lambi nahin…..

    Hasn’t he given us all an object lesson in life and profession ?

    I got to know Max later than other Marut types because he had left Jodhpur when we joined the Fleet. But when we met several years later (he was AA to the Chief), it was enough for him that I had been in 10 Sqn to provide a platform for instant rapport. I knew him to be a committed officer and a thorough professional, ever balanced and proper in conduct with juniors and seniors alike.

    Wherever he is, I feel sure he will enrich his surroundings in much the same manner as he did when he was with us.

    Rest in peace.

    Ravi Burli

  6. Air Cmde.V.K.Murthy AVSM.VM (G) Retd says:

    Dear Dara,
    I covey my heartfelt condolences to Mrs Mathews and their family through this blog in your post. I met Air Marshal for the very first time during Golden JUBLEE and had a brief and intelligent conversation during the get together. I was thoroughly impressed by his humility and futuristic knowledge and his ideas about Air Force. It is a great tragedy and loss to loose such a personality at very young age.
    May his soul rest in peace.

    4022 (F) P
    First C.O of No 10 Sqn ( HF-24 )

  7. Dara says:

    Received on email:

    Dear Dara Sir,

    Sad news, indeed.

    Vicky Sheorey and I were with Maxie in Adampur, soon after we left Maruts in Jul 81. He was a senior bachelor, staying in the ‘MiG Alley’ there with hordes of singles, from 3 fighter sqns; he was our coolest ‘leader’, even when others hijacked his brand new Yezdi and made off with it to Jullundur Cantt …!

    Met him many times thereafter in all his ranks up the ladder, including as the ACAS (Ops) when he gave me his typically wry briefing, when I was Contingent Cdr for the Suryakirans going abroad in 2007 …phenomenal sense of humour, always! Of course, will never forget our interactions during the Bangalore Marut Reunion …

    May his soul rest in peace …

    – Rags

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