A POLICE officer who witnessed the aftermath of the Glasgow Airport terrorist attack has retired after 30 years of service.

Sergeant Alan Mack, who was most recently based in Johnstone, said he never saw his role as work, despite witnessing gruesome and upsetting scenes in his time.

The 59-year-old admitted the most harrowing moment of his career was being called to Glasgow Airport in 2007 when two terrorists tried to kill thousands of innocent holidaymakers.

A Jeep Cherokee laden with propane gas cylinders and cans of petrol was driven at speed into the doors of the Paisley terminal departure area by Bilal Abdulla and Kafeel Ahmed.

Only a concrete pillar at the main door prevented the pair causing the mass death of holidaymakers.

Abdulla was sentenced to 32 years in jail while Ahmed died a month after the attack from severe burns.

“I don’t think I’ll ever forget that day – I don’t think anyone will,” said Sgt Mack.

“I was heavily involved in it and it will always be one of my biggest memories.”

Sgt Mack started out as a policeman in 1988 in Kilmarnock and remained in Ayrshire for 18 years.

He was then promoted in 2006 and moved to Renfrewshire, initially working as a response officer before moving into community policing.

And Sgt Mack, who was born in Johnstone and brought up in Paisley, said it was a highlight of his career when he was posted back where it all began.

“It was quite nice to go back to the place where I am from and I have particularly enjoyed the community side of policing while I’ve been here,” he said.

“Seeing the new policing model of having officers in each town come to life has been great and I think it’s been very effective and rewarding.

“It hasn’t ever felt like a job – it’s a vocation and a way of life. There’s not a job I can think of that has that much variety.”

Sgt Mack, a dad-of-one, now plans to spend some time on his boat on Lock Fyne and play plenty of golf as well as travel to see family in Australia.

Inspector Cassie Glass, who worked with Sgt Mack, said: "I have worked with Alan for the last four years in Johnstone.

"Alan was an excellent Community Policing Sergeant with a wicked sense of humour and will be sadly missed by myself, all his colleagues and the community as a whole. We would like to wish him a very long and happy retirement."