Tony Mason (RAF officer)

Summary

Air Vice-Marshal Richard Anthony Mason, CB, CBE, DL (22 October 1932 – 12 November 2023) was a Royal Air Force officer who served as Air Secretary.

Tony Mason
Born(1932-10-22)22 October 1932
Died12 November 2023(2023-11-12) (aged 91)
Cheltenham, England
AllegianceUnited Kingdom
Service/branchRoyal Air Force
Years of service1956–89
RankAir Vice-Marshal
Commands heldAir Secretary (1985–89)
AwardsCompanion of the Order of the Bath
Commander of the Order of the British Empire

Early life

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Richard Anthony Mason was born on 22 October 1932,[1] as the son of William and Maud Mason.[2] He was educated at the then all-boys private Bradford Grammar School and at the University of St Andrews, from where he graduated with a Master of Arts (MA).[2]

Military career

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Mason was commissioned into the Education Branch of the Royal Air Force as a flying officer on 29 June 1956 with the service number 504826.[3] Promoted to flight lieutenant on 29 December 1958,[4] he was appointed to a permanent commission on 1 July 1959.[5] He was promoted to squadron leader on 17 February 1963[6] and to wing commander on 1 July 1970.[7] He attended the United States Air Forces's Air War College located in Maxwell Air Force Base, Montgomery, Alabama in 1971 and the RAF's Staff College in Bracknell, Berkshire in 1972.[1]

Mason became Director of Defence Studies in 1976.[2] He was promoted to group captain on 1 January 1977.[8] In the 1981 Birthday Honours, he was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE).[9] He was appointed Director of Personnel (Ground) in 1982,[2] and promoted to air commodore on 1 January 1983 as part of the half-yearly promotions.[10] He became Air Secretary in 1985, having been Deputy Air Secretary in 1984.[2] He was promoted to air vice-marshal on 1 January 1986, once again as part of the half-yearly promotions.[11] He was appointed Companion of the Order of the Bath (CB) in the 1988 Birthday Honours.[12] He was succeeded as Air Secretary by Air Vice-Marshal Robert Honey on 10 February 1989.[13]

Mason retired from the Royal Air Force on 22 April 1989.[14]

Later life

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Following his retirement from the RAF, Mason became an academic. In 1996, he was made an honorary professor of the University of Birmingham.[2] He had been Director of its Centre for Studies in Security and Diplomacy[15] from 1988 to 2001.[2] He was a specialist air adviser to the House of Commons Defence Committee between 2001 and 2006.[2][16]

Mason was made an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society (Hon FRAeS) in 2006.[2] In March 2002, he was commissioned a deputy lieutenant (DL) to the Lord Lieutenant of Gloucestershire.[17]

Personal life and death

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In 1956 he married Margaret Sneddon Stewart; they had two daughters Lindsay and Pamela (died 1985).[18] Margaret Mason died in 2023.[19]

Mason died on 12 November 2023, at the age of 91.[20]

Published works

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  • The Aerospace Revolution: Role Revision and Technology – An Overview
  • Mason, Tony To Inherit the Skies: From Spitfire to Tornado, Brassey, 1990, ISBN 0-08-040708-0
  • Mason, Tony Air Power: a Centennial Appraisal, Brassey's, 2003, ISBN 978-1-85753-322-4

References

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  1. ^ a b "Air Vice Marshal Tony Mason, CB, CBE, DL". People of Today. Debrett's. Retrieved 4 November 2012.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i "MASON, Air Vice-Marshal Richard Anthony, (Tony)". Who's Who 2012. A & C Black. November 2011. Retrieved 4 November 2012.
  3. ^ "No. 40875". The London Gazette (Supplement). 7 September 1956. p. 5162.
  4. ^ "No. 41598". The London Gazette (Supplement). 2 January 1959. p. 159.
  5. ^ "No. 41859". The London Gazette (Supplement). 30 October 1959. p. 6937.
  6. ^ "No. 42924". The London Gazette (Supplement). 15 February 1963. p. 1616.
  7. ^ "No. 45138". The London Gazette (Supplement). 26 June 1970. p. 7195.
  8. ^ "No. 47117". The London Gazette (Supplement). 10 January 1977. pp. 371–373.
  9. ^ "No. 48639". The London Gazette (Supplement). 12 June 1981. p. 1.
  10. ^ "No. 49237". The London Gazette (Supplement). 17 January 1983. p. 759.
  11. ^ "No. 50398". The London Gazette (Supplement). 13 January 1986. p. 562.
  12. ^ "No. 51365". The London Gazette (Supplement). 10 June 1988. p. 3.
  13. ^ "No. 51650". The London Gazette (Supplement). 20 February 1989. p. 2179.
  14. ^ "No. 51754". The London Gazette (Supplement). 5 June 1989. p. 6664.
  15. ^ "About". Speakeasier Charity. 2012. Retrieved 5 November 2012.
  16. ^ "R. A. "Tony" Mason" (PDF). Global Air Power Contributor Bios. Retrieved 5 November 2012.
  17. ^ "No. 56516". The London Gazette. 22 March 2002. p. 3601.
  18. ^ Debrett's People of Today 1994
  19. ^ Mason
  20. ^ "Lieutenancy Team". Lord Lieutenant of Gloucestershire. Retrieved 14 November 2023.
Military offices
Preceded by Air Secretary
1985–1989
Succeeded by