John ‘Jack’ Patrick Finn

June 23, 2015

FINN, John -‘Jack’ Patrick – – – SPC 1904

DoB:– – – – 1893, Port Fairy, VIC

Father:– – John Finn

Mother:- – Norah, nee McNamara

Jack Finn was one of four brothers, all boarders from Port Fairy: Cyril, Laurence, Claude and Jack. His brother Laurence also enlisted (Service No 212)- and was killed in action at Gallipoli on 7 August 1915.

Service No:– 6016 / 1196 / 1086 / 1092

Rank:- – Private

Unit:– – 1st Australian General Hospital / 8th Light Horse

Jack Finn’s war record is quite difficult to understand. It seems he enlisted on a few occasions, including at sea on board the Kyarra. It is possible that he -‘ran away’ to enlist after hearing of his brother Laurence’s death at Gallipoli. In any event, he was away from Australia on active service for five years.

He was wounded in action in Egypt in December 1916, suffering a gunshot wound in his forearm. He was evacuated to the Egyptian Emergency Field Hospital in Cairo. He was later taken on strength and transferred to the 9th Light Horse Regiment in Moascar, Egypt, in February 1917.

In August 1917 he had the misfortune to be -‘found drunk in a brothel in Cairo’ by his superior officers (which of course begs the question, what were those officers doing there?) and deprived of ten days’ pay.

Despite this misdemeanour, Private Finn was promoted to the rank of Lance Corporal in November 1917. He was briefly hospitalised in March the following year after a fall from his horse, but he was able to return to duty later that same day. From April to June 1919, he underwent treatment for venereal disease at the 14th Australian General Hospital in Abbassia.

By 2 August 1919 he was aboard the Delta for return to Australia due to debility, which could have been small pox but was most likely to recover from venereal disease.

Several years after returning to Australia, Jack Finn married Margaret Jane Kermond in 1942. Jack was 50 years of age. The couple had no children.

Jack died on 3 January 1950 after years suffering from arteriosclerosis and hypertension. He was buried at the Port Fairy Cemetery, Victoria.