TANGO ROMEO
The life and times of Jack Malloch

        Event Timeline

  • 1920 to 1943
    Jack is born in Durban SA – Oct 1920
    The Malloch family move to Umtali in Rhodesia – 1925
    Jack attends boarding school in Somerset West – 1933
    Jack is withdrawn from school and starts working in a garage as a mechanic – 1935
    Jack gets his drivers license and starts working for the Railways as a driver – 1936
    World War Two is declared – Sept 1939
    Jack is accepted into the Royal Air Force - 1943
    Jack receives his Wings and is sent to War – Dec 1943
     

  • 1945 to 1962
    Jack is shot down and wounded behind enemy lines. He is hidden from the Germans by the Partizans – Feb 1945
    Jack returns to the squadron after being flown out of his mountain hiding place and having recovered in hospital – April 45
    Jack marries Zoe Coventry in Salisbury – January 1948
    The first ‘Spitfire Ferry’ from the UK to Southern Rhodesia. Jack is one of the pioneering pilots – March 1951
    Jack and Jamie Marshall establish ‘Fish Air’ - March 1952
    Jack and Jamie sell Fish Air to Hunting Clan. Jack is retained as a pilot by Hunting Clan - Oct 1955
    Jack establishes Rhodesian Air Services (RAS) and starts working for Tsombe in Katanga – 1960
    The UN shoots down one of Jack’s RAS DC-3’s in Katanga - July 1962
     

  • 1963 to 1967
    Katanga is defeated by the UN and surrenders, becoming a province of the Congo – January 1963
    Jack’s RAS is involved in gun-running in the Yemen – 1963/64
    Tshombe returns from exile and is invited back to the Congo as Prime Minister – June 1964
    Jack starts working for Tsombe again and flies in support of Mike Hoare against the Congo rebels – Aug to Nov 1964
    Rhodesia declares UDI from Britain – Nov 1965
    Jack established Air Trans Africa (ATA) - January 1965
    Jack’s ATA first becomes involved in Rhodesian sanctions-busting – 1966/67
    Biafra declares independence from Nigeria and the Nigeria Civil War begins – May 1967
     

  • 1967 to 1973
    The ‘Mercenaries Revolt is launched in the Congo with the news that Tshombe has been kidnapped. Jack flies re-supply missions for Schramme’s
    column of mercenaries – July to November 1967
    Jack makes his first gun-running flight into Biafra – July 1967
    Jack and his DC-7 crew are jailed when landing in Togo with a cargo of 9 tons of Nigerian banknotes – January to June 1968
    Jack and ATA make nightly weapons flights into Biafra – July 1967 to January 1970
    Biafra is finally defeated – January 1970.
    Jack establishes Afro-Continental Airways – January 1970.
    Jack’s ATA, with a fleet of Gabonese registered aircraft, becomes heavily involved in Rhodesian sanctions-busting – 1970 to 1980
    The UK’s Sunday Times runs a front page expose on ‘Tango Romeo’ – August 1973
     

  • 1976 to 1978
    Britain makes their third complaint to the UN about Jack Malloch and his sanctions-busting airline - May 1976
    Jack is called up as a reservist to the Rhodesian Air Force. Jack and his DC-7 aircraft become very involved in Rhodesian military operations and long
    range parachute drops – January 1977
    Jack’s DC-7 flies Bob Denard into Cotonou where he launches a coup attempt. It fails – January 1977
    Jack pilots the Rhodesians largest SAS HALO para-drop over Mocambique – October 1977.
    Jack is involved in the very successful ‘Operation Dingo’ with the Rhodesian Army and Air Force – November 1977
    Jack starts to renovate the old Rhodesian Air Force Spitfire Mk 22 that has been on a plinth as a gate-guard for over 20 years - 1978
    Jack’s CL-44 is intercepted by two MiGs over Angola and has to escape through the mountains – May 1978
    Jack brings back a 30kg coelacanth from the Comores – July 1978
     

  • 1979 to 1982
    Jack is very involved in the SAS bridge-blowing ‘Operation Cheese’ in north-eastern Zambia – September 1979
    Jack makes the first flight in the renovated Spitfire Mk 22 – March 1980
    Jack’s CL-44 is destroyed by fire at Salisbury airport – February 1982.
    Jack is killed while flying the Spitfire Mk 22 on the last day of filming the documentary ‘Pursuit of a Dream’ – March 1982.