Deployed RAF personnel celebrate the RAF's 100th birthday with their NATO allies in Romania

Royal Air Force personnel based in Southern Romania have organised a series of events to celebrate the RAF centenary alongside the United States (US) and Romanian (RO) military who are also operating in the Black Sea Region.  

The Commanding Officer of 135 Expeditionary Air Wing (EAW), Wing Commander Chris Ball, and personnel under his command at Mihail Kogalniceanu (MK) Air Base, started the day’s celebrations with a joint parade at the RO Navy Headquarters at Constanta Port, where members of 135 EAW were marched on to the parade square to stand alongside personnel from the RO Air Force and RO Navy.

Corporal Nick Stevens, an RAF Regiment Gunner, was one of the members of 135 EAW who participated in the RAF 100 and Romania 100 parade. 

“Many of the guys I have worked with during my career as an RAF Regiment Gunner are on parade in London today.  It’s great that I have been given the opportunity to join in the ceremonial activities for RAF 100 during my deployment, particularly as drill lies at the heart of the RAF Regiment.  I am very proud to be representing my Service whilst on operations in Romania.” 

Corporal Nick Stevens
RAF Regiment Gunner

Senior Officers from the US military and RO military, including the RO Fleet Commander Rear Admiral Daniel Capatina, the Deputy Mayor of Constanta, and the British Ambassador’s representative in Romania, were welcomed to the event during the opening address by Wing Commander Chris Ball. 

“Back in the UK today, the RAF will fly 100 aircraft over London to celebrate RAF 100 and inspire a new generation, it would be a dream to imagine that we had perhaps provided inspiration for some here in Romania.  I know that many of my personnel have been inspired to return to Romania as tourists during this deployment. I hope that we can share the next 100 years as NATO partners, friends and allies.”

Wing Commander Chris Ball

Wing Commander Chris Ball speaks.

Following the parade, Wing Commander Chris Ball and the personnel under his command returned to MK Air Base with their American and Romanian counterparts for a lunch of typically British food at the combined messing facility, which ended in everyone gathering together to watch the CO slice into the RAF 100 cake created by the Romanian catering team.

Wing Commander Chris Ball cuts the RAF100 cake.

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