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1994: 'The pain has not subsided'
Twenty-nine people, including more than 20 of Britain's top terrorism experts, died when the RAF Chinook helicopter they were travelling in crashed during a routine flight from Belfast to Inverness.

A year later an RAF board of inquiry ruled that the pilots - Flight Lieutenants Jonathan Tapper and Richard Cook - had been guilty of "gross negligence" but campaigners have since fought to clear the names of the dead pilots, claiming the aircraft was at fault.

In 2002 a House of Lords committee opposed the RAF's initial verdict, but its findings were not accepted by the government.

Ten years after the accident, many relatives and colleagues of those who died still feel questions remain unanswered.

Your memories:

Steve Foster, Northern Ireland
I am the son of one of the unfortunate passengers on the Chinook, then Detective Superintendent Robert Foster, 41-years-old, who left behind a wonderful and heart-broken 38-year-old wife and still devastated 18 and 20-year-old daughter and son.

To read the report online has brought back very vividly the feelings of numbness I felt at the time regarding events surrounding the crash.

It's hard to believe that 10 years later there still is no further progress surrounding the facts which caused the accident, so much so that it feels like an episode of the X-Files...the only difference is, Mulder and Scully would be as perplexed as everyone else.

Ten years after and the pain has not subsided, and indeed the inability to fathom the gravity of the situation.

Reading the original article again has only served to revive the numbness I felt at the time. With no "real" progress since then, (ie beyond the Ministry of Defence's cowardly and callous attempts at blaming the pilots who are not in a position to defend themselves, so as to absolve the MoD of all responsibility for the loss of fathers and spouses, and proud defenders of our nation) the accident is only still a sad reminder of the state of Northern Ireland and the indifference of our government.

To think that these unsung heroes died for a government which has all but rebuffed the dignity of their lives and the value of their roles as defenders of British Government and State makes me seethe. I and many other families lost fathers, brothers, sisters and spouses for nothing other than an event which gave the media some airtime and deprived some people of their loved ones.

May the British government, MoD and the Police Service of Northern Ireland (formerly the RUC) pay for their insolent negligence and betrayal of men who sacrificed their lives.

Sam Rosenfeld, UK

I worked for Colonel George Victor Williams (Intelligence Corps) who sadly lost his life aboard the Chinook - his death was a great loss to me personally. He is and always will be sadly missed.

As for the MoD's treatment of the Chinook's crew and family, they are just a bunch of cold hearted people who wouldn't recognise the truth if it slapped them in the face. They are a disgrace to the nation and the memory of real heroes, like Col Williams, Flight Lieutenants Jonathan Tapper and Richard Cook.

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Steve Foster, whose father was killed in the tragedy
Steve Foster, whose father died in the tragedy, still wants answers


Wreckage of the Chinook
The crash killed everyone on board the Chinook
Witness Stories


 
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