Cpl Craig Elsey (44), a Reservist Mover with 4624 Squadron based at RAF Brize Norton is getting married soon – and he’s got his Reserve Service to thank!
Over the past six years as a Reservist, Craig has served around the world in his role as a Mover. This trade involves the safe and secure movement of people, cargo and equipment anywhere it is needed at any time.
He has recently been promoted to acting Corporal in his squadron. This was the moment where Gemma, his partner, reminded him of his promise.
“I had always told Gemma I wouldn’t propose until I had Corporal stripes on,” he said. “As soon as I got them she said, ‘Right then…it’s time’.” The couple plan to marry in 2018.
In 2014 Craig was deployed for three months to Camp Bastion as part of Operation Herrick and he has been deployed to RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus as part of Operation Shader.
For the last 20 years, Craig has worked as a team leader for British Airways first at Gatwick and now at Heathrow.
“BA has been very supportive of my Reservist work. They allow me time and flexibility to fulfil my commitment to the Reserves and give me an extra five days’ leave for annual training”.
Craig is proud to serve in the Royal Auxiliary Air Force and is thankful for all the experiences he has had since joining.
He said: “My Reservist Service all started with a chat in the pub to some friends. Since then, I’ve become part of a bigger family, travelling to some amazing places. I wouldn’t do it if I didn’t like it, but it is important to understand that the more you put into Reserves, the more you will get back.”
One of Craig’s proudest moments was when he marched in the Lord Mayor’s Show with 4624 Sqn colleagues.
“I marched in my No.1 uniform, with my Afghanistan medal pinned on,” he said. “We were marching behind the Queen’s Colour Squadron and I couldn’t puff my chest out any further with pride. That was when I really felt a special part of the Royal Air Force.”
If you are interested in learning more about 4624 Movements Sqn or other RAF Reserve opportunities, please ring the Recruiters on 01993 897712 or email BZN-LogsReserves-Recruiting@mod.gov.uk