Video: Proud family make military history

WHEN Flight Sergeant Andy Brown became the proud father of three sons, little could he have imagined his brood would one day make military history.

Laurence Cawley

WHEN Flight Sergeant Andy Brown became the proud father of three sons, little could he have imagined his brood would one day make military history.

But with the graduation today of his 16-year-old son Leading Aircraftsman Ben Brown as a Gunner in the RAF Regiment, the family, formerly of Stanton, near Bury St Edmunds, became the first since World War Two to have a father and his three sons serving in the same regiment.

After his graduation, LAC Brown said: “I am very proud of myself and my family, with two brothers and my Dad in the RAF. My Dad has always said we could do whatever we wanted to do and I think if we had wanted to do something else he would have been fine.“But I decided this was what I wanted to do from a very young age. I'm looking forward to getting into 1 Squadron and going oversees will be good.”

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Fl Sgt Brown, who will soon be involved in training his youngest son at the RAF's School of Signals, said: “We believe this is unique.

“We were formed in 1942 and I don't think this (a father and three children serving in the RAF simultaneously) has happened before.

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“It is a proud day for me and a proud day for the regiment. I'm looking forward to training my own son. He will be making me lots of cups of tea! In all seriousness, he will be treated no differently to anybody else.”

Fl Sgt Brown said he was not planning to have any more children in the future, so the chance of having four children in the regiment were very slim.

LAC Brown's eldest brother Senior Aircraftsman Matthew Brown, 20, flew back from his current duties in Afghanistan with 1 Squadron RAF Regiment, to see his brother graduate.

“It is great to be back for this. I'm really proud of him,” SAC Brown said. “I missed Sam's (the third brother) graduation because I was in Iraq.”

Senior Aircraftsman Sam Brown, 18, who will be departing for Iraq next month with 15 Squadron Regiment, said: “I'm proud of him too. It is good that all of us have got a good job. I've always known I was going to join.”

LAC Brown was one of 25 airmen graduating at RAF Honington yesterday, earning their RAF Regiment “mudguards” in the process.

Station commander of RAF Honington, Group Captain Nick Bray said: “This is a tremendously proud moment for all of these young men and their families.

“It is made all the more special by the fact that the fourth member of the Brown family is now joining the RAF Regiment, in which his father and two elder brothers are already serving.”

The 25 airmen who graduated yesterday have completed a 23 week long course and each will now be posted to an RAF Regiment Squadron where they will undergo further professional training.

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