May learned to fly in 1933 and qualified as a fighter pilot. He was posted to 802 Squadron on 7 September 1934 and flew in this squadron from Courageous and Glorious.
Exactly two years after joining the squadron he was killed at Hal Far on 7 Sept 1936. It seems that whilst taking off from Hal Far airfield in Malta his engine failed and he committed the one error all pilots are warned against - he attempted to turn back instead of landing straight ahead. As a result he stalled and spun into the ground. He was buried at sea off Malta from H.M.S. Glorious on 8 September 1936.