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Record 383/959
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Admin/Biog History Farrell Bernard Finan was born November 5, 1923 in Oshkosh, WI, the son of Chester T. and Elsie Finan. He graduated from Oshkosh High School in January 1942 and went to work for Kimberly Clark Company in Niagara Falls, NY. He enlisted in the US Navy on November 23, 1942 and received his basic training at Farragut, Idaho and aviation maintenance school in Norman, OK. He graduated as a Naval gunner from Purcell, OK and was at the naval air base in Vero Beach, FL when he was killed in a plane crash on October 23, 1943.
Classification Archives
Collection Winnebago County Historical Commission
Dates of Accumulation 1943
Abstract Letter from Farrell Bernard Finan to his parents, Chester T. and Elsie Finan, in Oshkosh. This letter was written two days before his death.

Farrell Bernard Finan
NAS Aircrewman
Vero Beach, Florida

Hi Folks Patsy-Shirley Tuesday 21'43
Well we were supposed to fly tomorrow but the pilots got off so we won't till Thursday. We start right off dive-bombing. It's quite a thrill so they say. They've really got us going about it. We had a lecture on fear today. All about physiology back of it, all that stuff. We're flying in Brewster Buccaneers SB2-17's.
All of us non-rated men have to go up for rates as 3rd class P.O. Go to school all day then go out and work on the planes till 9 o'clock so will know a little bit about it. If we don't make it this stuff don't mean a thing. We don't get a insignia showing we went through here. Or a diploma either. We've got radio-radar-morse code semaphore ordnance. We're anything but mechs. We'll really be busy so don't be surprised if you don't hear from me very often. They took our liberty cards away so we couldn't go on liberty. Study more. They're going to take us down to Miami and put us in a pressure chamber to see how much we can take.
We've got flying helmets goggles flying jacket, gunners belt parachute and a chest outfit if you flop in water it expands so you can float.
They've got life rafts made of rubber on the plane in case you crash on water that's got everything under the sun in it. Rolled up its about the size of a slender ____ ___. More mosquitoes around here and it rains everyday. Quite a life.
I'll have to sign off.
Event World War II
Category 8: Communication Artifact
Legal Status Oshkosh Public Museum
Object ID RG71.15.1
Object Name Letter
People Finan, Farrell Bernard
Subjects World War II
United States Navy
Air bases
Aircraft accidents
Title Letter
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Last modified on: December 12, 2009