Champion aerobatic pilot Mark Jefferies pays tribute to Sgt Matt Ratana, the policeman shot dead by a handcuffed man in Croydon police station on Sept 25, 2020.
After the policeman’s funeral on Nov 4, a memorial ceremony was held at East Grinstead rugby ground, where Matt was trainer. Mark obtained special permission to fly into strictly-controlled Gatwick airspace to trail a “thin blue line” in the sky to honour Sgt Ratana, 54, and his colleagues who man the country’s thin line of law and order.
Mark, 62, who flies from Little Gransden, Cambs, said: “A friend was speaking about the Sergeant’s death and the heroic actions of the people who try to defend us every day. This was my way of paying tribute to him in recognition of his long career in the Met – and his comrades.”