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Operational Honours List 2022

The following are some of the Royal Air Force aviators recognised in the Operational Honours List 2022 

Member of the most excellent order of the British Empire (MBE)

Flight Lieutenant Victoria Grace Kellagher

  • Nominated as: 617 Squadron Intelligence Officer - Op FORTIS

Flight Lieutenant Kellagher has been awarded an MBE for her dedication, development, provision and education of intelligence support that has enabled a crucial leap in understanding of air intelligence, increasing the Carrier Strike Group’s tactical capability and safeguarding National security interests.

Through innovative thinking, absolute dedication and exceptional hard work in an unfamiliar working environment, she has honed processes to deliver next generation air intelligence planning and reporting for decades to come.

I am very honoured to have been recognised this year, and to have worked with the team, leadership, squadrons and people who made Op FORTIS the success that it was and who have developed Carrier Strike Group to where it is today.

Flight Lieutenant Victoria Grace Kellagher
617 Squadron Intelligence Officer

Image shows RAF aviator with HMS Battleship and Royal Navy Squadron behind her.
Flight Lieutenant Victoria Grace Kellagher.

Queen’s commendation for valuable service (QCVS)

Warrant Officer Kevin Edward Jones

  • Nominated as: Aircraft Recovery Office - Op PROWLING

Warrant Officer Kevin Jones has been awarded a QCVS for his leading role in the recovery of a F-35B Lightning, that had crashed into the Mediterranean Sea and settled 2000m below the surface.

Displaying exceptional leadership, resilience and considerable bravery, he was responsible for the planning and execution of all activity once the wreckage had been recovered to the recovery vehicle. Having deployed with a four-man team instead of twelve, he stepped up to the mark with his flawless decision making, leadership and performance.

I am extremely humbled to receive this award, both for myself and on behalf of the Joint Aircraft Recovery and Transportation Sqn team that deployed in support of Op PROWLING. I believe the F-35B recovery from the Mediterranean sea bed to be the most complex aircraft recovery of modern times, of which I am immensely proud to have been a part of. It amazes me what can be achieved and this Op has definitely been a highlight of my career.

Warrant Officer Kevin Edward Jones
Aircraft Recovery Office

Image shows official portrait of RAF aviator with union jack flag.
Warrant Officer Kevin Edward Jones.

Flight Lieutenant Graeme John Ritchie

  • Nominated as: Counter Un-Crewed Aerial Systems Detachment Commander - Op SHADER

Flight Lieutenant Ritchie has been awarded a QCVS for demonstrating the highest standards of personal leadership and flawless commitment, whilst extending his tour by three months to ensure vital continuity.

Showing deep professional knowledge, he quickly identified ways that improved siting of some key equipment, significantly enhancing defences. Through his actions, warning times were greatly reduced which would have meant far fewer casualties should there have been an enemy strike. 

His contribution has been truly exceptional and far beyond the expectations of his rank.

I am very appreciative and absolutely humbled to receive this honour. It goes without saying that it is only made possible by the hard work and sacrifice of the men and women that support me.

Flight Lieutenant Graeme John Ritchie
Counter Un-Crewed Aerial Systems Detachment Commander

Image shows RAF aviator and HMS Battleship.
Flight Lieutenant Graeme John Ritchie.

Read the full list of Royal Air Force personnel recognised in the Operational Honours List 2022.