A Royal Navy sailor from Larne is currently serving on his last deployment after an amazing 30 year career on the high seas.
Serving in Type 23 frigate, HMS Argyll, Executive Warrant Officer Al Davison, 49, is the most senior non commissioned officer onboard. His role is primarily to ensure that the ship’s Commanding Officer has the correctly trained personnel to operate the ship through the full array of her capabilities.
He also keeps a watch on compassion and welfare issues thereby ensuring the moral component of operational capability is maintained at the highest level.
He said: “In my position onboard, simply walking my patch and talking to people serves to build a bond of trust which adds to HMS Argyll’s ‘Band of Brothers’ ethos and ensures the ship’s most important element – its people, are happy, content and always professional.”
EWO Davison was born in Larne and attended Moyle Primary School and then Larne High School, before joining the Royal Navy’s Fleet Air Arm in 1983 as an aircraft handler, an aviation fire-fighting specialist. He has served all over the world on a wide variety of Royal Navy Ship’s including aircraft carriers, assault ships and Royal Fleet Auxiliary vessels.
After progressing through the ranks he was deservedly promoted to Warrant Officer in 2008 and then had the privilege of being posted to his current role in February 2011. This is EWO Davison’s second deployment in HMS Argyll having completed a deployment last year to the Arabian Gulf.
EWO Davison always had aspirations of joining the Royal Navy from an early age. His grand-father, Robert, served in the Royal Navy during WW1 seeing action on several ships so stories of life at sea were an integral part of Alan’s childhood.
He said: “For as long as I can remember I was fascinated by my granddad’s stories so I was always going to join the Navy and I can honestly say I have never looked back on my decision.
“To any young person wanting an interesting, challenging and rewarding career I would whole-heartedly recommend them to join up; it has given me a wonderful career, shown me the world and forged life-long friendships with great people. If I could do it all over again – without hesitation I would.”
On return from deployment EWO Davison is due to leave HMS Argyll after two-and-a-half years onboard and will go back to his roots in the Fleet Air Arm to complete his remaining service ashore.
His new role will be to train the next generation of young aspiring naval aircraft handlers passing on his wealth of experience.
HMS Argyll’s Weapon Engineer Officer, Lt Cdr Bob Evans, said: “Alan is affectionately known onboard as ‘the father of the ship’.
“He takes great pride in knowing his ship’s company and is always available to offer advice or direction to anyone who needs it. His knowledge and understanding has been a great asset.”