Ex-Air Chief Marshal La Fontaine passes away
Medak, April 6 (INN): Former Air Chief Marshal Denis Anthony La Fontaine died of cardiac arrest in the wee hours of Wednesday at Brahmanapally in Medak district. The former Indian Air Force officer had been living at his farmhouse in Bharmanapally village after his retirement in 1988. He was 81.
Born in Madras on September 17, 1929, the former Air Chief Marshal was decorated with the Param Vishista Seva Medal, Ati Vishista Seva Medal and Vishista Seva Medal for his distinguished service. The highly decorated officer was the son of Major Je La Fontaine of the Indian Army Medical Corps and both his Grandfathers served with the Indian Army as officers.
He began his career with the Armed Forces by enrolling into the Indian Air Force in October 1947. He was initially trained on the Tigermouth aircraft, then later on Harvards, Spitfires and the Tempests aircraft. He was commissioned into the flying branch at Ambala in April 1950.
As a Group Captain, La Fontaine was the Chief Instructor with the Air Force Academy and was responsible for developing a system of graded performance standards that improved the quality of flying training.
He was named Chief of Air Staff after the untimely demise of the then CAS, Air Chief Marshal LM Katre. His term saw the IAF inducting state-of-the-art defence fighters like the Mirage 2000 and the MiG-29.
News Posted: 6 April, 2011