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Rodney Noble (1921–1995)

One of the Australian Defence Force's most respected senior officers, Air Vice-Marshal Rodney Noble, AO, died suddenly on Saturday while visiting family in Perth. He was 73.

Born and educated in Sydney, Air Vice-Marshal Noble was the son of former Australian cricket team captain and great all-rounder, "Monty" Noble.

Graduating in aeronautical engineering from the University of Sydney, he joined the RAAF in 1943. An outstanding engineer, he served as a pilot for much of his career. He was in a variety of major air force projects, including the Neptune Maritime Reconnaissance Aircraft, the C-130 Hercules, and the F/A 18 strike aircraft.

He became chief of RAAF technical services and was awarded an AO for outstanding leadership, managerial skill and efficiency in the engineering branch of the Airforce.

After retiring as an Air Vice-Marshal in 1981 he acted in a number of positions, including the president of the Royal Aeronautical Society of Australia; controller of the air performance unit; Australian manager of Rockwell International Electronics; chairman of Defence Manufacturing Association of Australia and chairman of the Institute of Engineers.

Air Vice-Marshal Noble is survived by his daughter, Elizabeth, of Perth, and his two sons, Michael, of Armidale, and Roger, of Canberra.

A full military service will be held today at 11am at the Anzac memorial chapel of St Paul, Duntroon.

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Citation details

'Noble, Rodney (1921–1995)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 26 May 2024.

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