An Cosantóir

An Cosantóir March & April Issue 2022

An Cosantóir the official magazine of the Irish Defence Forces and Reserve Defence Forces.

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Page 5 of 79

6 100TH ANNIVERSARY MESSAGE TO THE IRISH AIR CORPS April 2022 A Chairde, to the personnel of the Irish Air Corps, as previously noted in this publication and elsewhere, I was proud to return as Minister for Defence in 2020. The pride that I felt then continues today and I would like to congratulate you and celebrate with you on your 100th Anniversary during this important Decade of Centenaries. I was pleased and honoured to be able to join you in Casement Aero- drome last month for the official centenary celebrations on a beautiful sunny morning. Meeting crews and their families was a special highlight of the day for me, while seeing the fleet touch down in sequence was quite 100TH ANNIVERSARY MESSAGE TO THE IRISH AIR CORPS Minister of Defence Simon Coveney the spectacle to behold. Well done to all involved! At no time in your illustrious history has the worth and importance of a strategic national aviation solution been more pronounced or more visible than in the recent past. Over the last two years, when commercial aviation faced unforeseen and unprecedented disruption, the Air Corps were in a position to expertly support the national response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Your services in sup - port of the National Health Services in particular, have been of incredible value and I believe wider Irish society will join me in thanking you for your dedication in responding to Ireland's call. During this period, military taskings too, were of utter importance and your role in performing strategic troop rotations should not go unrecorded. Your commitment to service and to each other is evident in the professionalism and steadfastness with which you have undertaken your roles assigned by Government over these last 100 years. The establishment of the Ministerial Air Transport Service during the 1970s was a key point in the long history of the Air Corps and I want to acknowledge the many times I have been privileged to avail of this ser - vice and witness first-hand your professionalism. I have been very fortunate and very proud as Minister for Defence to have had a role in the acquisition of the PC-12 fleet; an agile and important addition to Air Corps capabilities. I also look forward to the arrival of the new C-295s next year and commend your proactive engage- ment in progressing both of these projects in conjunction with the Department of Defence. Your aptness at collabo- rating with others is evident in the broad and varied range of Departments and Agencies you assist, on an almost daily basis. Your work in maritime patrol in support of the Sea Fisheries Protection Authority, your aerial fire-fighting activities in support of local Fire Services and the Depart - ment of Housing, Planning and Local Government, and your provision of the EAS and other aeromedical supports to the National Ambulance Service and HSE, highlight just how agile and responsive you are. Your role is very much a part of everyday Irish life and your services to Irish society are exemplary. Over the last 100 years you achieved much and overcame much and I believe the same will be the case going for - ward. Challenges will and do exist. The work arising from the report by the Commission of the Future of the Defence Forces is just beginning. I believe this is an important junc- ture for the Defence Forces in general, and for the Air Corps as you pass your milestone anniversary. I look forward to your cooperation and commitment in ensuring the con- tinued success and utility of the Air Corps across the next 100 years as we celebrate your century of service! Congratulations again. Wishing you and your families all the best.

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