Military History Books
by Harold A. Skaarup   
Canadian Warplanes 1: Armstrong-Whitworth F.K.8

Armstrong-Whitworth F.K.8

Data current to 14 April 2021. (Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN 3387943)

Armstrong-Whitworth F.K.8. 

While flying an F.K. 8, 2Lt Alan A. McLeod won the Victoria Cross for an action fought by him and his observer, Lt A.W. Hammond, MC, on 27 March 1918.  2Lt Alan A. McLeod VC grew up in Stonewall, Manitoba.  During an air battle at an altitude of 5,000', 2Lt McLeod and his Observer, Lt A.W. Hammond MC, were attacked by eight German Fokker Dr.1 Triplane fighters.  2Lt McLeod skilfully manoeuvred to enable his observer to engage and shoot down three of the attackers.  Wounded five times and with his aircraft on fire, 2Lt McLeod climbed out onto the left bottom-plane of his aircraft and proceeded to control his machine from the side of the fuselage.  By steeply side-slipping the aircraft he was able to keep the flames to one side, thus enabling the observer to continue firing until the ground was reached.  The observer had by now been wounded six times when the machine crashed in "no man's land," and 2Lt McLeod, not withstanding his own wounds, dragged him away from the burning wreckage at great personal risk from heavy machine-gun fire from enemy lines.  Wounded again by a bomb while engaged in this rescue, he persevered until he had placed Lt Hammond in comparative safety before falling himself from exhaustion and lack of blood.  He later died of influenza on 6 November 1919.  He was Canada's youngest VC winner, and the youngest winner of a VC for an air action.

 (IWM Photo, Q 67601)

 2Lt Alan A. McLeod, VC.