Flight Lieutenant Gordon Leslie MacIntyre DFC (42718) served in the Royal Air Force during the Second World War. He was the son of Peter MacIntyre and Annie MacIntyre of Arnprior, Ontario, Canada, and the husband of Patricia Margaret Aimee MacIntyre of Coleraine, Co. Londonderry.
After attending school in Ontario and joining the Canadian Militia, he departed for the United Kingdom on a Liner in 1939. On arrival, he joined the Royal Air Force. On 18th September 1939, he was an Acting Pilot Officer on Probation. Photos belonging to descendants of MacIntyre suggest that he was part of the Dunkirk Evacuation on HMS Wolsey. He held the same rank in the RAF at the time of the evacuation on 30th May 1940.
MacIntyre in the RAF
On 20th April 1941, MacIntyre received a promotion to Flying Officer. He attained the rank of Flight Lieutenant 1 year later. At this time, he was a Bomber Pilot with RAF 221 Squadron. He flew missions in the Western Desert, and later from bases in Northern Ireland, and Iceland. On 18th September 1942, he received the Distinguished Flying Cross.
This officer is a captain of aircraft of outstanding courage and ability. He has been operating continuously since the war began and has never shown signs of tiredness or waning enthusiasm, being eager to undertake any job and has never left it until successfully completed. He has completed many hours operational flying involving patrols over the North Sea, the Atlantic during the Battle of the Atlantic from England, Northern Ireland and Iceland. On two occasions he has succeeded in locating and attacking enemy submarines, the second occasion being almost certainly successful. Throughout this officer has displayed exceptional skill and determination which has earned for him the confidence and admiration of the squadron.
Group Captain WJM Akerman, 6th August 1942.
Despite having spent time in Northern Ireland, it was in London where Gordon met his future wife, Patricia Margaret Aimee Moore. She was a WRN based in London. The couple married in late 1942 and Patricia was pregnant with a son at the time of her husband’s death. She named the son Gordon Leslie MacIntyre after his father.
Death in the UK
Flight Lieutenant MacIntyre died on 29th April 1943 aged 27 years old. He was the Pilot of Hudson IIIa FH307 with RAF 24 Squadron. This Squadron was part of Ferry Command, carrying passengers and mail across the Mediterranean. MacIntyre’s final flight was to bring a party of Senior Officers to Gibraltar. He volunteered for the flight, replacing another pilot who was ill.
The Hudson crew took off from RAF Hendon, London bound for a fuelling stop at RAF Portreath, Cornwall. From there, the crew and passengers would continue to Gibraltar. Weather conditions in Cornwall were poor and so a decision was made to refuel at RAF Chivenor, Devon instead. On approaching the base, the Hudson stalled, spun out, and crashed 1-mile north-by-northwest of the airfield.
|Last Name||First Name(s)||Rank||Role||Information|
|Ford||Frederick Ronald||Flying Officer||Navigator||RAF 49734. Killed.|
|Laver||Percy Frederick||Warrant Officer||Wireless Operator||RAF 508810. Killed.|
|MacIntyre||Gordon Leslie||Flight Lieutenant||Pilot||RAF 42718. Killed.|
|Newtown||Harold John Anthony||Aircraftman 1st Class||RAFVR 1235898. Killed.|
|Mack||Philip John||Rear Admiral||Passenger||Distinguished Service Order. Killed.|
|Salmon||Harry Leonard Nowell||Major General||Passenger||Military Cross. Royal Canadian Infantry Corps. Killed.|
|Beevor||Sir Thomas Lubbock||Captain||Passenger||6th Baronet. Killed.|
|Finlay||Charles Francis Geoffrey||Lieutenant Colonel||Passenger||Royal Canadian Army Service Corps. Killed.|
|Wilson||Guy Gervers Holmes||Lieutenant||Passenger||Royal Artillery. Killed.|
Gordon Leslie MacIntyre’s grave is in Section C, Grave 20 of Mill Hill Cemetery, Middlesex. His headstone bears the inscription:
You live again, Gordon, in our son and in my heart always. Your wife, Patricia.