The Airmen's Stories - Sgt. L J Patterson
Leonard John Patterson, the son of John and Nina Patterson of Freeland, Oxfordshire joined the RAFVR in January 1938 as an Airman u/t Pilot.
He was educated at Ballymoney Model School and Coleraine Academical Constitution in Northern Ireland, where he is recorded as being born in Johannesburgh, South Africa.
Called up on 1st September 1939, he completed his training at 2 FTS Brize
Norton on No. 47 Course, which ran from 28th April to 3rd August 1940. He converted to Hurricanes at 7 OTU Hawarden, arriving on 10th August.
He then joined 501 Squadron at Kenley on 2nd September 1940.
He was shot down and killed by Me109s east of Hastings on 28th November 1940. His Hurricane, P5189, is believed to have crashed into the sea.
Patterson was 23. His name is on the Runnymede Memorial, Panel 18.
Although the CWGC gives his age as 23, giving a birth year of 1917, he is recorded as boarding the ss Borda on 14th January 1921 bound for Cape Town SA. His age on the manifest was given as 2, giving a birth year of 1919. He was accompanied by his mother Nina, presumably her husband was working in South Africa.
Above image courtesy of Dean Sumner