Retired Air Force Pilot
Jun 11, 2024
Noel Dennett
Retired Air Force Pilot

I was born in Griffith NSW and spent my early years there. I had wanted to fly aeroplanes ever since I knew what they were. My family moved to Melbourne when I was ten so I spent my teens there. I started learning to fly at seventeen  on Tiger Moths. At that time an hour’s flying cost three quarters of my weeks pay. I finally achieved a Commercial Pilots Licence and an Instructors Rating but couldn’t get a job. I was married and the Air Force wouldn’t take a married trainee. However I found that tha Navy would and was lucky enough to get selected for Fleet Air Arm aircrew training in 1958. Training was with the Air Force so I was the only married trainee.

After graduation I went to the Naval Air Station at Nowra where I learned to Fly a Fairey Gannet, chase submarines, fire the weapons the Gannet carried, and land on a ship. I spent three and a half years flying the Gannet and then was transferred onto helicopters flying the Westland Wessex for a further time before leaving the Navy at the end of my short service commission.

I then joined Qantas where I flew Boeing 707’s and 747’s until 1990. I retired from Qantas and flew 747’s for Singapore airlines for five years.

After retiring from Singair we lived in England for three years then returned to Australia where I joined the Historical Aircraft Restoration Society and flew several of their aircraft.

We then moved to the Sunshine coast where I’m an active member of the Queensland Air Museum and fly regularly with a flying school.