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202 Squadron Association

Short 184

The plaque mounted on a granite background states”The ships bell from the M.S. Perseus as presented to the SAR Flight at RAF Lossiemouth after one of its most audacious rescues on the night of 2 Oct 1980”

M.S. Fineagle was on fire in gale force conditions  at night all crew were saved. The bell was presented on 1 April 2015 upon the arrival of D flight 202 Squadron to RAF Lossiemouth as a token of gratitude Their outstanding support

Flt Lt Mike Lakey was awarded the George Medal; Flt Lt Bill Campbell the Air Force Cross; Sgt Rick Bragg the Air Force Medal; Flt Lt Dave Simpson and Sqn Ldr Hamish Grant were awarded Queens Commendations.

All 5 were awarded the Silver Medal of the Swedish Society for the Rescue of Shipwrecked Seamen.

The crew were the first recipients of the Edward & Maisie Lewis Award from the Shipwrecked Fishermen and Mariners Royal Benevolent Society.

Mike Lakey was awarded the International Helicopter Heroism Award from the Aviation & Spacewriters Guild of the USA, the Order of the Golden Lions of Sweden, and was also voted '1980 Scot of the Year' by Radio Scotland listeners.

Several of the awards were accompanied by generous cheques to the RAF Benevolent Fund.

The Johannson Group, owners of Finneagle, presented the crew with a replica ship's bell with an engraved plaque which reads:

 "The crew members, their families and the owners of Finneagle express their gratitude for the most courageous rescue of all on board the vessel when she was burning and in a gale and had to be abandoned at 03:10hrs on October 2, 1980. The bravery and endurance of the crew are beyond all praise. "

The Fineagle Bell

On the closure of D Flight 202 Squadron at RAF Lossiemouth the Squadron agreed that the Bell should remain at Lossiemouth in the custody of the QRA accomodation to be rung whenever they are scambled.