Canadian Aviatrix #96 – Marion MacLeod (1917-2005)

Marion Beulah Heffer was born on 31 December 1917 to Harry Lockhart Heffer (a machinist) and Stella May Gould.

Stella lied about her age when they got married – she was only 16, but said she was 19. Harry died when Marion was only nine months old. Almost exactly a year later, Stella got remarried to George Ernest MacLeod (a bookkeeper) and Marion took her stepfather’s surname.

 

1921 census

 

Moncton NB

George

27

Stella

20

Marion

3

 

Marion graduated from Moncton High School and Business College and worked as a secretary.

Marion was the first woman to join the Moncton Flying Club. She told Shirley Render, “Flying was a “no no” for a girl. When you soloed, you bought a case of beer, but you couldn’t join the party”.

On 30 April 1942, Marion passed her flying test and received her PPL, making her the 96th female pilot in Canada and only the second one in New Brunswick. She was 24 years old.

Canadian Aviatrix #96 – Marion MacLeod (1917-2005) 

Photo: Moncton Museum and Transportation Discovery Centre

Marion was an active volunteer – with St John’s United Church, Canadian National Institute for the Blind, the Muscular Dystrophy Association of Canada, and the Canadian Mental Health Association. She was also a member of the Ladies Beaver Curling Club, the Moncton IODE, and the Moncton Golf Club.

She was honored by the Moncton Flying Club during the Fly Up 2000 Graduation Ceremonies.

Marion died in 2005, aged 87.

The First 100 Canadian Women Pilots