Sons of Damien

 
         
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Introduction

Revelations 13:18 - Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six, (666).

Sea King HU-5 XV666 (821) – Now unfortunately out of service.

Perhaps you are thinking why I should use the term “Sons of Damien“. Well it all stems from my service in the Royal Navy from 1978 to 1994. During this time I came across many aircraft all with obviously different serial numbers. The one that stuck in my mind was that for a Sea King HU-5, XV666. This aircraft while no different from any other Mk5 in service had adopted the somewhat unusual unofficial nickname of “Damien”. This name stems from the series of films released in the 70’s/80’s that of the “Omen”. In which a child who was allegedly the son of the Devil had the numbers “666” marked on his head was called Damien. The film was subsequently re-made and released on 06/06/06, hmm how long have they been waiting for that date?

I have subsequently discovered that a Lynx AH-7 XZ666 also carried the same unofficial nickname. This name would only have been applied to aircraft post release of the film in the mid seventies. Whether the significance of this number was realised earlier I have no idea. Although in some ranges of serial numbers the number 666 is skipped. Therefore out of a possible 499 serial numbers from 666 through to ZJ666 only 335 existed as aircraft.

Strictly speaking there is only one true Damien and that is a B.E.2b (666) built after 1912, as this would make this a very short document I have expanded my search to cover all aircraft whose serials end in 666. This will include 1666 etc. A666 etc. A1666 etc. and finally AA666 to the present day.

Where I can I will identify the aircraft type, where and when it was built to what specification, the units it served in and its final fate, if that can be established. I suspect I will have to use many different publications and web sites to collate this information. I hope it is of interest to some people.

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