I’ve got sad news to pass on to you all today. This weekend Ian Hay AKA Aitch passed away. Ian was a proper old school core airsoft community member, he’s one of very few people who has stuck with the hobby since the early days and kept on working hard for all of us. Although he used to be a very active player, the thing that particularly amazed me about Ian is that his declining health had him confined to a wheelchair for years now, and not practically able to airsoft, and yet he still remained pivotal in running various airsoft forums and building project guns amongst other things! He’s been there supporting UK airsoft players every day for longer than we can remember.

Ian was a vocal member of the community, well informed, considered and always ready to speak out for what was right even when it meant going against the flow. I’m one of many, many airsofters who are eternally grateful for his help and yet never met Ian in the flesh. I’ve chatted with him off and on since the 90’s, and traded a few guns with him too, but for me personally he stood out as an immediate, and loud, supported of UKAPU when we launched. Ian was always there for me as a sounding board too, a level head for me to bounce ideas off of. His consistent participation behind the scenes and in public helped shape what UKAPU became, as well as the UK airsoft scene as a whole. If you are new to the hobby I just want you to know how important Aitch was to UK airsoft, and if you are part of the old guard, then Ian will need no introduction and I’m simply here to pass on the bad news to you. Please feel free to leave comments below, it’d be lovely if we could pass on some of the communities thoughts to his family.

Next time you brew up in the safe zone, raise a polystyrene cup to Ian Hay, Aitch, fallen comrade; the word legend is oft overused, but here it fits the bill.

Matt