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Thomas Fanahan Finn

Thomas Fanahan FinnTom was born in Mitchelstown, County Cork in June 1915, and educated at the Christian Brothers School there. He was the son of Ned and Kathleen Finn, and had an elder sister Maureen. His father, a publican, died when Tom was only two years old. Kathleen married again, and produced two more daughters and a son. 

Corporal Tom Finn voluntarily enlisted with the Manchester Regiment at Ashton-under-Lyne in November 1934. He served with the 1st Battalion in Egypt, Palestine and Singapore as a signaller, and was known for his skills in welterweight boxing and hockey.

In February 1942, Tom was captured as a Japanese Prisoner of War in Singapore and held captive for three and a half years. He mostly worked in the anti malarial & anti epidemic working parties in a number of camps in Thailand. In June 1944, he survived two ‘hell ship’ journeys to Japan, and worked in Osaka and Naoetsu. Tom’s captivity ended when the Americans dropped two atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

After being brought home via Canada, Tom met his future wife Ethel at The Dale Barracks in Chester. They married in September 1946, lived on the Grange Estate, and had five children - three boys and two girls.

Tom trained as a teacher, and taught at primary schools in Droylsden and Timperley until he took early retirement from ill health in 1974. He died aged 85 in 2000.

By Mrs Kit Clay (Tom’s Daughter).