September 15, 2021 10.50 am This story is over 26 months old

RAF instructor who served in Lincolnshire dies in tragic parachute accident

She has been described as having a ‘bubbly personality’

Tributes have been paid to a popular RAF servicewoman, who previously served in Lincolnshire, after she tragically died when her parachute reportedly failed to open on a training jump in Oxfordshire.

Sergeant Rachel Fisk, 32, died at RAF Weston-on-the-Green near Bicester in Oxfordshire on September 3.

Rachel, who was born in Nuneaton, developed a strong passion for athletics which led her to follow in the footsteps of her military family and join the RAF as a physical training instructor in 2011. She initially served at RAF Wittering and RAF College Cranwell.

She was then selected for instructional duties at the parachute training school at RAF Brize Norton. This is where she learned to instruct and deliver parachute training for the armed forces. Rachel then moved to deliver training at RAF Weston-on-the-Green.

The Royal Air Force described Rachel as a “selfless individual, who was eager to volunteer and reassure those around her”.

They said: “She naturally loved her career and not only worked with professionalism and diligence, but also fun and enthusiasm spurred by her passion for what she did.

“Rachel was a valued member of the team she worked with and esteemed by those she trained. Not only was Rachel known for her infectious smile and bubbly personality, but she could also make a cracking cup of tea.

“She will be deeply missed by her RAF colleagues.”

Rachel’s family said: “It is with great sadness that we mourn the death of our dear daughter, Rachel. She lived her life with joy and thoughtfulness for others and loved the career she had chosen. Rachel will be missed by so many.”

Air Commodore Suraya Marshall, Commandant at RAF College Cranwell, said: “The death of Sergeant Rachel Fisk is a tragic loss, our thoughts go out to the family, friends, colleagues and the close-knit community of Weston-on-the-Green – she will be missed by us all.”

RAF colleagues, including Flight Sergeant Dylan Bartle, paid tribute to her saying: “Rachel brought personality to the team and was one of the most selfless individuals you could meet, constantly volunteering for tasks to allow her colleagues to spend more time with their families.

“Able to transfer her bubbly personality to her students, she consistently gave them the assurance and confidence required to complete that nervous task of jumping out of an aircraft.”

Squadron Leader Helen Simpson said: “Rachel never failed to impress with her skydiving ability and it was very clear she would go far – but it is her personality, her humour and her huge heart that will be sorely missed by all of us at Weston on the Green.”

The RAF is said to be investigating the circumstances surrounding the incident.