Les joined the RNZAF in 1948 as an aircraft mechanic. In 1951 he joined #8 aircrew course graduating as a Sgt Pilot. He flew and instructed on Tiger Moth, Harvard, Mustang, Oxford, Devon and Sunderland aircraft. On Sunderlands he did a basing in Laucala Bay, Suva with 5 Sqn. Then at Hobsonville he was Training Officer for MOCU and 6 Sqn, which included training responsibilities with Navigators plus Radar and Radio Operators.
He left the RNZAF in 1958 and joined TEAL on Solent flying boats again based at Laucala Bay. With TEAL/AirNZ he then flew Electras, DC8, DC10 and B747 aircraft. During this period he proudly recalled that he obtained an Air Navigators Licence, he could hold his own in any celestial navigation discussion. At age 55 he joined Singapore Airlines on the B747 until his retirement at age 60 in 1989.