The Airmen's Stories - Sgt. L J Tweed
Leslie John Tweed was born on 17th October 1920. He joined the RAFVR about August 1939 as an Airman u/t Pilot. Called up on 1st September 1939, he carried out his flying training at 6 EFTS Sywell and at 8 FTS Montrose on No. 18 Course, which ran from 9th April to 26th July 1940.
He was awarded his flying badge on 6th June 1940, completed the course and joined 111 Squadron at Croydon on 27th July.
He was detached from 111 to the Kenley Sector Training Flight on the 29th for a short instructional course.
Tweed arrived at 6 OTU Sutton Bridge on 3rd August on attachment for further training. After converting to Hurricanes Tweed rejoined 111 on 24th August.
In an engagement at 20,000 feet over Kenley on 6th September Tweed shared in the destruction of a Ju88 with F/O BH Bowring. Tweed's Hurricane, L1892, was hit by return fire and he prepared to abandon it but after removing his helmet and goggles he passed out. Coming to at 1,200 feet he found the canopy splattered with blood and baled out. Tweed landed in a tree over the wreckage of his aircraft, in Lumberdine Wood, Chelsham, Surrey.
He jumped down, crawled to a derelict hut and again passed out. He came to and found himself looking down the barrel of a Canadian soldier's rifle. Tweed was taken to Warlingham Park Hospital for treatment.
He rejoined the squadron on 12th December 1940. He was posted away to 2 CFS Cranwell on 29th December 1940 for an instructors course.
Commissioned in June 1942, Tweed was released from the RAF in 1946 but later rejoined.
He retired on 21st October 1972 as a Flight Lieutenant.
Tweed died on 4th February 1985 in Harrogate.