John William Finn facts for kids
John William Finn
John William Finn wearing his Medal of Honor
23 July 1909|
Los Angeles, California
|Died||27 May 2010
Chula Vista, California
|Place of burial||
Saint Carmel Cemetery, Campo Indian Reservation(Coordinates: )
||United States Navy|
|Years of service||1926–1956|
|Battles/wars||World War II
• Attack on Pearl Harbor
|Awards||Medal of Honor
John William Finn (23 July 1909 – 27 May 2010) was an American sailor in the United States Navy. He served as a chief petty officer. He received the United States military's highest decoration, the Medal of Honor, for his actions during the attack on Pearl Harbor in World War II. Finn was the oldest living Medal of Honor recipient in the United States and the last living of the Pearl Harbor recipients.
Finn was born on 23 July 1909 in Compton, California. Finn dropped out of school after the seventh grade. He then attended General Aviation Utilities Training at Naval Station Great Lakes. In 1939, Finn married his wife Alice Finn.
Pearl harbor and after
As a chief aviation ordnanceman stationed at Naval Air Station Kaneohe Bay, he earned the medal by manning a machine gun from an exposed position throughout the attack, despite being repeatedly wounded. He continued to serve in the Navy and in 1942 was commissioned an ensign.
In 1947 he was reverted to chief petty officer, eventually rising to lieutenant before his 1956 retirement. In his later years he made many appearances at events celebrating veterans. At the time of his death, Finn was the oldest living Medal of Honor recipient and the last living recipient from the attack on Pearl Harbor.
He was the first member of the armed services to earn the Medal of Honor during World War II for heroism.
Personal life and death
His wife, Alice Finn, died in 1998. Since 1956, Finn lived in a ranch in Live Oak Springs, near Pine Valley, California.
Finn died at age 100 on the morning of 27 May 2010, at the Chula Vista Veterans Home from natural causes. He was buried besides his wife at the Campo Indian Reservation's cemetery, after a memorial service in El Cajon.
Images for kids
U.S. Navy ferry boat John W. Finn
John William Finn Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.