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The Airmen's Stories - S/Ldr. R I G MacDougall


Ralph Ian George MacDougall was born on 8th August 1911.

His father, Ewan Alan MacDougall, was serving as a Major in the Canadian Field Artillery when he was killed in action near Ypres, Belgium on 8th May 1916. He is commemorated on the Menin Gate.

RIG MacDougall was granted a short service commission in the RAF on 14th March 1930. He carried out his flying training at 5 FTS Sealand and then joined 43 Squadron at Tangmere on 8th March 1931.

MacDougall commanded 43 Squadron from August 1936 until 4th February 1937, when he was posted to the Experimental Section at RAE Farnborough to command the Instrument, Armament and Defence Flight.



From 30th October 1939 MacDougall reformed and then commanded 235 Squadron at Manston. After relinquishing command of 235 in May 1940 MacDougall was briefly with 56 Squadron, as a supernumerary, before taking command of 17 Squadron at Debden on 8th June 1940.

He was posted away on 18th July and attached to RAF Duxford.

Although posted to HQ 9 Group as a Fighter Controller on 11th August, MacDougall remained at Duxford until 19th August when he left for HQ 13 Group. He ceased to be attached to 13 Group on 28th September and was attached to RAF Digby from 1st October for Ops duties. This attachment ceased on 27th October and he finally went to HQ 9 Group.

From 1942 to 1944 MacDougall was Station Commander at Hal Far, Malta and Ramleh, Haifa and Ramat David, all in Palestine. He returned to the UK in 1945 and was Station Commander at RAF Andover until 1947, when he went on to the Reserve.

MacDougall returned to full-time service in 1948, in the Secretarial Branch, and finally retired on 9th August 1966 as a Flight Lieutenant, retaining the rank of Wing Commander.

He died on 22nd July 1994 in Marlborough.

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