Alexander FINNIE


FINNIE, Alexander

Service Number: 20
Enlisted: 21 August 1914, Sydney, New South Wales
Last Rank: Lieutenant
Last Unit: No. 4 Squadron, Australian Flying Corps
Born: Botany, new South Wales, 1893
Home Town: Botany, New South Wales
Schooling: Banksmeadow Public School
Occupation: Sheetmetal worker
Died: Killed in Action; mid-air collision, France, 22 May 1918
Cemetery: Pont-du-Hem Military Cemetery, la Gorgue
II. F. 19
Memorials: Australian War Memorial, Roll of Honour, Haymarket NSW Government Railway and Tramway Honour Board
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World War 1 Service

21 Aug 1914: Enlisted AIF WW1, Sapper, SN 20, Sydney, New South Wales
18 Oct 1914: Involvement AIF WW1, Sapper, SN 20, 1st Field Company Engineers, Enlistment/Embarkation WW1
18 Oct 1914: Embarked AIF WW1, Sapper, SN 20, 1st Field Company Engineers, HMAT Afric, Sydney
25 Apr 1915: Involvement AIF WW1, Sapper, SN 20, 1st Field Company Engineers, 'ANZAC' / Gallipoli
22 May 1918: Involvement Australian Flying Corps, Lieutenant, No. 4 Squadron, Australian Flying Corps

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Biography contributed by John Edwards

"Second Lieutenant (later Lieutenant) Alexander Finnie, 4th Squadron, Australian Flying Corps (AFC), of Botany NSW. A sheet metal worker before enlisting on 21 August 1914, he embarked from Sydney as a Sapper with the 1 Field Company Engineers on HMAT Afric on 18 October 1914. He was evacuated from Gallipoli with gas poisoning on 18 August 1915. He was promoted to Lance Corporal on 22 January 1916, to Second Corporal on 9 March 1916, and to Temporary Corporal on 23 July 1916, this rank becoming permanent on 9 August 1916. On 30 April 1917 he transferred to the AFC, and having graduated as a pilot was promoted to Second Lieutenant on 6 November 1917, then to Lieutenant on 6 February 1918. He was killed in action near Estaires on 22 May 1918, when his plane collided with another 4th Squadron plane while shooting down balloons behind the German lines. He was 25 years old." - SOURCE (


The plane Lieutenant Alexander Finnie collided with was another 4th Squadron Sopwith Camel belonging to Lieutenant George Nowland (/explore/people/75403). Both planes spiralled downward to ground where they crashed, killing both pilots.