(The Daily Mail newspaper) An RAF pilot rewarded for bravery while fighting in Iraq, is calling for greater awareness of mental health, after his mother took her own life following a long battle with depression.
Squadron leader Roger Cruickshank, 34, a keen skier who has represented Great Britain at the Olympics, last month received the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) for helping save the lives of Iraqi soldiers, despite his own life being at risk when his jet plane ran ‘critically low’ on fuel.
In the official award citation, Cruickshank, from Banchory, Aberdeenshire, is described as having conducted ‘successful strikes against multiple hostile targets, with repeated exposure to enemy anti-aircraft systems.
‘He showed phenomenally quick-thinking, supreme technical knowledge and sheer determination’.
But the presentation at Buckingham Palace was a bittersweet occasion for the fighter pilot because his mother, Ann, was not there to see him receive his award.