School friends reunited at raleigh
Two former pupils of Lytchett Minster School, in Dorset, have been reunited during a parade at HMS Raleigh in Cornwall.
The passing-out-parade at Raleigh is an important occasion when we celebrate the success of the recruits and acknowledge the courage and determination they have shown to complete the arduous 10 week initial naval training course.Captain Bob Fancy
Captain (Capt) Bob Fancy, Royal Navy, and Colonel (Col) Dominic May, Royal Marines, attended the school between 1976 and 1981. They were in the same class and played rugby together.
After school they went their separate ways joining their respective Service in 1983. Both have enjoyed successful careers and met up once more when Capt Fancy, who is now the Commanding Officer of HMS Raleigh, invited Col May to be the VIP inspecting officer at one of the establishment’s regular passing-out-parades.
The parade is the culmination of the 10 week initial naval training course for new recruits to the Royal Navy. As the VIP Col May was invited to inspect the parade and take the salute during the march past.
Capt Fancy said:
“The passing-out-parade at Raleigh is an important occasion when we celebrate the success of the recruits and acknowledge the courage and determination they have shown to complete the arduous 10 week initial naval training course.
"To reinforce the importance of the parade and the sense of occasion we invite a senior officer to be the VIP and it was a particular pleasure and privilege to invite my old school friend who is also in Command.”
Col May is now the Commanding Officer of the Commando Logistic Regiment Royal Marines based at Chivenor, in North Devon. He originally joined the Royal Marines as a recruit in 1983 and was commissioned in 1989.
A specialist Mountain Leader he has seen active service in Northern Ireland, Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan and took up his current appointment in March 2012. The 48-year-old said:
“It was an absolute privilege and an honour for me to participate in such a superb occasion for the future of our magnificent Navy.
"I am hugely grateful for the invitation to pass the recruits of Cunningham 14 Division out of initial naval training, and to be afforded the opportunity to share in such a momentous, spectacular and very poignant day for all of those involved.
"From a personal perspective, the day was all the more special as it provided a fantastic opportunity for me to joined forces again with my old friend after a period of some 30 years or so.
"On so many levels, it was a very special day indeed and I congratulate Capt Bob and the staff of HMS Raleigh on a job very well done indeed.”
Capt Fancy is a submariner by specialisation and has served in a number of diesel and nuclear powered submarines.
He completed the Submarine Command Course in 1995, after which he went on to command the submarines HMS Trafalgar and HMS Triumph.
Capt Fancy, who is also aged 48, was awarded the OBE in 2002 for service in Afghanistan.
He was appointed the Commanding Officer of HMS Raleigh in September 2012 and became an Aide-de-Camp to Her Majesty the Queen in January this year.
HMS Raleigh is the Royal Navy’s largest training base in the South West and provides the life-blood of the Royal Navy through a diverse range of training.
This training ranges from the ten-week initial induction for all new rating recruits to specialist training in areas such as seamanship, submarine operations, logistics, military and board and search skills.
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