Commander Gary Kelly was a member of
Manchester and Salford University Air Squadron
prior to joining the Royal Air Force in 1983,
having gained a BSc (Hons) in Management
After flying training he was posted to
RAF Scampton on CFS where he was trained as a
first tour was at RAF Church Fenton teaching
on the Jet Provost.
In 1988 he underwent tactical weapons
training before being posted to 12 (B) Sqn at
RAF Lossiemeouth, flying Buccaneer S2B and
During this tour he was detached to RAF
Muharraq and flew several operational missions
during Op GRANBY.
Having converted to the Tornado GR1 he
joined IX (B) Sqn based at RAF Bruggen,
specialising in the SEAD role; during the tour
he flew over 100 missions into Iraq.
In 1997 he was posted as an instructor
at the Tornado OCU, based at RAF Cottesmore.
to Squadron Leader in 1998 he took command of
the University of Birmingham Air Squadron.
In March 2000 he took a staff appointment
at the Flying Training Development Wing,
investigating current and future training
systems including Typhoon and Joint Combat
to Wing Commander in 2002, he was appointed SO1
J3 Air in the UK Joint Force HQ, PJHQ.
During the tour he was lead of numerous
Operational Liaison and Reconnaissance Teams
taking part in operations in Africa and the
During OP TELIC, he was the senior J3/5
Air advisor to the UK National Contingent
Commander in the UK National Contingent HQ,
Qatar, throughout the build-up to and conduct-of
Commander Kelly attended Advanced Command and
Staff College in Canberra, Australia, during
February 2005 he was posted to Al Udeid, Qatar,
where he was Chief of Combat Operations in the
CAOC, leading a predominantly US team conducting
operations in Iraq, Afghanistan and the Horn of
assumed command of 208 Sqn, RAF Valley on 20 Dec
Commander Kelly enjoys hill walking, shooting
and cooking. He
is married to Nicola, a lecturer in
horticulture, and they have 2 children.