FINN, John William, LT

 TWS Ribbon Bar
 Service Photo   Service Details
22 kb
View Time Line View Family Time Line
Last Rank
Last Service Branch
Aviation Ordnance Technician
Last Primary NEC
636X-Limited Duty Officer - Aviation Ordnance
Last Rating/NEC Group
Line Officer
Primary Unit
1950-1954, 636X, USS Hancock (CV-19)
Service Years
1926 - 1956
Aviation Ordnance Technician

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

25 kb

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Ken Borchik, AVCM to remember FINN, John William (MOH), LT USN(Ret).

If you knew or served with this Sailor and have additional information or photos to support this Page, please leave a message for the Page Administrator(s) HERE.
Contact Info
Home Town
Compton, CA
Last Address
Chula Vista CA

Date of Passing
May 27, 2010
Location of Interment
Campo Indian Reservation Cemetery - Campo, California
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

US Navy Retired 30

 Unofficial Badges 

Pearl Harbor Memorial Medallion US Navy Honorable Discharge Navy Chief Initiated

 Photo Album   (More...

 Ribbon Bar
Naval Flight Officer Wings

 Enlisted/Officer Basic Training
  1926, Recruit Training (San Diego, CA), 001
 Unit Assignments/ Advancement Schools
Advancement Schools and CoursesNAS North IslandUSS Lexington (CV-2)US Navy
USS Saratoga (CV-3)Commander in Chief Pacific Fleet (CINCPACFLT)/Commander Pacific Fleet (COMPACFLT)CNO - OPNAVVB-102
USS Hancock (CV-19)
  1926-1927, AN-9760, Aviation Mechanics School
  1927-1928, AN-9760, NAS North Island
  1928-1929, AO-0000, NAS North Island
  1929-1930, AO-0000, USS Lexington (CV-2)
  1931-1932, AO-0000, USS Houston (CA-30)
  1933-1934, AO-0000, USS Saratoga (CV-3)
  1934-1936, AO-0000, USS Cincinnati (CL-6)
  1936-1940, AOM-0000, Aircraft Squadrons, Pacific Fleet, Naval Air Forces Pacific Fleet
  1940-1942, AO-0000, NAS Kaneohe Bay, HI
  1942-1943, 636X, NAS Kaneohe Bay, HI
  1947-1950, AO-0000, CNO - OPNAV
  1950-1954, 636X, VB-102
  1950-1954, 636X, USS Hancock (CV-19)
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1941-1941 Philippine Islands Campaign (1941-42)/USS Canopus (AS-9)
  1941-1941 World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Attack on Pearl Harbor
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

Bio: John William Finn was born in Los Angeles, California and spent his early years in Compton. He enlisted in the Navy at the age of 17 on July 29, 1926. Finn was assigned to Hawaii in 1940 and served there until 1943. He was commissioned as a Limited Duty Officer with the rank of Ensign on October 6, 1942. He was promoted to Lieutenant in May 1943. In 1943 he was transferred to the mainland and in 1946 he transferred to the fleet reserve. In 1947 at the U.S. Navy Training Center, he left active duty and was reverted to his enlisted rank of chief petty officer. He eventually become a Lieutenant with Bombing Squadron VB-102 and aboard the USS Hancock (CV-19). He officially retired from the Navy as a Lieutenant in September 1956.
Of Note: John Finn received the first Medal of Honor awarded for WWII. Noteworthy: John Finn is one of the most down-to-earth and genuine people I have ever met. There are three things that will bring a glimmer to his eyes... the thought of his late-wife, Alice is the first and foremeost. Second is his love of our country, and next in line above food, or air, or water is the pride he has in having been a CHIEF Aviation Ordnanceman. Every airdale should know this man... he is, in my opinion, a national treasure!
Other Comments:

Medal received from: Admiral Chester Nimitz aboard USS Enterprise, signed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt September 15, 1942

Official Citation:

"For extraordinary heroism distinguished service, and devotion above and beyond the call of duty. During the first attack by Japanese airplanes on the Naval Air Station, Kaneohe Bay, on December 7, 1941, Lt. Finn promptly secured and manned a .50-caliber machinegun mounted on an instruction stand in a completely exposed section of the parking ramp, which was under heavy enemy machine gun strafing fire. Although painfully wounded many times, he continued to man this gun and to return the enemy's fire vigorously and with telling effect throughout the enemy strafing and bombing attacks and with complete disregard for his own personal safety. It was only by specific orders that he was persuaded to leave his post to seek medical attention. Following first aid treatment, although obviously suffering much pain and moving with great difficulty, he returned to the squadron area and actively supervised the rearming of returning planes. His extraordinary heroism and conduct in this action were in keeping with the highest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service."
Copyright Inc 2003-2011