Canadian Virtual War Memorial

Robert Leighton Moore Ferrie

In memory of
Second Lieutenant
Robert Leighton Moore Ferrie
January 3, 1918

Military Service:

Age:
19
Force:
Air Force
Unit:
Royal Flying Corps
Division:
46th Squadron
Citation(s):
Military Cross (MC)

Additional Information:

Son of Robert Bown Ferrie, of Hamilton, Ontario.

Commemorated on Page 586 of the First World War Book of Remembrance. Request a copy of this page.

Burial Information:

Cemetery:
IZEL-LES-HAMEAU COMMUNAL CEMETERY ; Pas de Calais, France
Grave Reference:
Grave 5.

Information courtesy of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

Digital Collection

Send us your images
  • Gravemarker – This is the grave of Lt. Robert Ferrie.  It was taken in April 2006 in the Izel-les-Hameau Communal Cemetery, in which there are just six Commonwealth War Graves.
Lt. Ferrie was killed in January 1918 when, while leading his flight back from patrol, his Sopwith Camel's wings suddenly folded back.  It is believed that the aircraft must have suffered damage during a scrap they had during the flight.  He was 19 years old.
Because pilots of the era did not have parachutes, he was doomed to plummet to the ground with what remained of his aircraft.  

The story of his death is related in Arthur Gould Lee's book "No Parachute".
  • Gravemarker – Many years ago, I read about Robert Ferrie in A. G. Lee's book "No Parachute".  Lee and Ferrie served in  the Royal Flying Corps' 46 Squadron at the same time, primarily during 1917.

On the 3rd of January 1918, Ferrie was leading his patrol back to base after having had a "scrap" with the enemy.  Lee describes how the wings of his Sopwith Camel suddenly folded up, and the aircraft plunged earthward.  The other members of his patrol dove alongside but could only watch as Ferrie struggled with whether he should stay with the machine, or jump.  You see, at that time Commonwealth pilots did not have parachutes.  The Camel hit the ground and Ferrie was killed instantly.  He was only 19 years old.

The story of his death has stuck with me for decades.  Thus, when the opportunity to visit France finally came in April of 2006, my daughters and I sought out his grave so that we could honour his memory.  It was a privilege to do so.
  • All Saints' Anglican Church Memorial Plaque – All Saints' Anglican Church, 1914-1918 Memorial Plaque, 15 Queen Street 
South, Hamilton, Ontario.
  • Cemetery – This is a look at the general environment of the military graves in Izel-les-Hameau Communal Cemetery.  All 6 of them can be seen in this view, and it is clear that they are part of the civilian cemetery (hence the term "communal".  My daughter Katherine is in front of Ferrie's grave.

This is a tiny little graveyard in a beautiful and quiet corner of France.
  • Photo of Robert Leighton Moore Ferrie – Robert Leighton Moore Ferrie, MC.  Fighter pilot, 46 Squadron, Royal Flying Corps.  Born and raised in Hamilton, Ontario.  Killed in action 03 January 1918 at the age of 19 and buried in Izel-les-Hameau Communal Cemetery, France.  

This portrait is contributed on behalf of both his school, Hillfield Strathallan College, and his family.

Lest We Forget.
  • Memorial – Pro Deo Et Patria Erected by the Royal Military College Club of Canada Anno Domini 1923. Ex-cadets are named on the Memorial Arch at the Royal Military College of Canada.

1123 Captain Robert Leighton Moore Ferrie MC (RMC 1915) was the son of Robert Bown Ferrie, of Hamilton, Ontario. He served with the Royal Flying Corps, 46th Squadron. He died on January 3, 1918. He was buried in the Izel-Les-Hameau Communal Cemetery, Pas de Calais, France (5).
  • Memorial Stained Glass – On their 50th anniversary the class of August 1915 at the Royal Military College of Canada have placed this memorial stained glass window to honour their fallen classmates.

1123 Captain Robert Leighton Moore Ferrie MC (RMC 1915) was the son of Robert Bown Ferrie, of Hamilton, Ontario. He served with the Royal Flying Corps, 46th Squadron. He died on January 3, 1918. He was buried in the Izel-Les-Hameau Communal Cemetery, Pas de Calais, France (5).
  • Memorial Doll – Ex-cadets are named on the Memorial Arch at the Royal Military College of Canada in Kingston, Ontario and in memorial stained glass windows to fallen comrades.
  • Memorial Stained Glass – Royal Military College of Canada memorial stained glass window
  • Memorial Arch – Royal Military College of Canada memorial arch
  • Memorial – Memorial Flag, Royal Military College, Kingston, Ontario
  • Memorial Stained Glass – Memorial window, Royal Military College, Kingston, Ontario
  • Biography – Submitted for the project, Operation: Picture Me

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