CAPTAIN Gordon Butterworth served his country in a leading role during the Falklands conflict.

Capt Butterworth, 86, was head of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) during the war.

The RFA is Britain’s largest merchant shipping company and was brought in to supply logistical support for the Royal Navy.

The RFA ships supplied fuel and equipment to the Task Force which was 8,000 miles from the UK in the South Atlantic.

Capt Butterworth handled the complex operation of supplying the Task Force from an armada of 24 RFA ships.

Capt Butterworth was born in Renfrewshire, Scotland, but brought up in Huddersfield.

He had arrived in the town with his widowed mother and his siblings and he went to Royds Hall High School.

On leaving school, Capt Butterworth joined the Merchant Navy as a cadet.

He served in the Blue Funnel Line during the Second World War and was eventually promoted to captain in 1964, 12 years after joining the RFA.

Capt Butterworth was awarded the CBE in 1986.

He was married twice and leaves a son.

A memorial service was held in Plymouth.