Saddened to hear about the passing away of Air Cmde Pete Wilson yesterday. Aged 88, he was a legend to those in the IAF who either knew him or had heard of him.
Of the few heroes I had in Service, he was the first. Have written about my one experience with him, just a few months ago. The photograph above is exactly as he was during those days in 1965. A charismatic personality, it would be impossible to find anyone who had anything but praise and respect for someone who was a loving family man, a thorough professional and a father figure and mentor to youngsters.
For leading the day time bomber raid on Badin in Sep ’65, he was awarded the Vir Chakra. Again in 1971, as Station Commander, Jamnagar, he was awarded the Param Vishist Seva Medal , the last sentance of the citation reads – “In his outstanding career, with his leadership, drive, determination and implacable will. Group Captain Wilson rendered distinguished services of the most exceptional order.” Famously known for his deception plans – which in spite of multiple attacks launched by the PAF at Jamnagar resulted in almost no damage to the base. Most of all, it was his calm, soothing confidence which inspired ground and aircrew alike to give off better than their best during the operations.
For those who came in touch with him at all, his passing away will be felt as a personal loss. A chapter has closed, will not be forgotten.
Our heartfelt condolences to his family.