Jessie Watts McIntyre was born in 1922 in Collingswood, New Jersey, and graduated from Collingswood High School in 1939. She then attended a nearby nursing school, where she met her future husband, a medical student. McIntyre graduated in 1942 and stayed on as a pediatric nurse.
McIntyre joined the Army Nurse Corps in 1943. She was sent to Fort Dix, New Jersey, to await assignment. There she received operating room nurse training and married Don McIntyre. She was then stationed at Fort Jackson, South Carolina, for basic and overseas training, and assigned to the 131st Evacuation Hospital. In December 1943 McIntyre traveled to Altrincham, England, aboard the Queen Elizabeth. A few months later the unit was transferred to Ellesmere, Wales, and in the summer of 1944, following D-Day, they moved to LeHavre, France. McIntyre's unit followed the front to Becherbach, Germany, in 1945, and in May followed liberating forces into the Mauthausen concentration camp in Austria. She was there treating survivors until October 1945. McIntyre was discharged in October 1945 when she became pregnant.
McIntyre had three children while her husband worked in private practice and in the army reserves. In 1959 the McIntyres joined the Foreign Service and were sent to Vietnam for two years. They continued to work for the Foreign Service until 1976, when they left their final post of Vienna and settled in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.