OBITUARY: Col. Thomas F. Finn, Jr., 74

Below is an obituary from Nichols Funeral Home:

WILMINGTON, MA — Thomas F. Finn, Jr., COL (Ret.) U. S. Army, age 74, of Wilmington, MA, passed away peacefully surrounded by his loving family on July 12, 2021, at the Lahey Clinic in Burlington.

Tom was born on September 24, 1946, in Boston, MA; he was the dear son of the late Thomas and Mary Finn. Tom lived in Hyde Park as a young boy before his family moved to Dedham, MA, where he was raised and educated. Tom graduated from Cathedral High School in Boston, MA, with the Class of 1964 and went on to further his education at Northeastern University in Boston where he participated in the ROTC program. Tom graduated from Northeastern in1969 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial Engineering.

Tom was proud of his heritage; he came from a long list of family members including his Dad, Uncles and Cousins, that served in various branches of the Military during several wars. Tom lived and breathed the Military for most of his life; following his graduation from Northeastern, Tom, started his career with the Army; he entered his first duty as a 2nd Lieutenant with the Army Infantry. Tom married his “sweetheart” Jane O’Connell on October 19, 1968 and soon after he was assigned his first duty in Germany where he brought his new bride. Tom spent most of that tour of duty overseas with 3rd of the 12th Armored Calvary Division; he was promoted to 1st Lieutenant in 1971. Tom was honorably discharged from active duty on August 31, 1973 and transferred to the U. S. Army Reserves.

Tom and Jane returned stateside with a young family in tow, they settled in Rockland, MA in 1973 before moving to Wilmington in September of 1975. While raising a young family, Tom also resumed his education; he attended Babson College, studied hard and earned a Master’s Degree in Business Administration, 1977.

While earning his master’s degree he began his 30 year Career at Polaroid Corporation, in Norwood, MA as an Engineer to Senior Principal Engineer.

Tom remained diligent in serving the Country; throughout his service as a reservist he continued to educate himself, answer the call of duty whenever needed and was always active and present when called upon. Throughout the years, Tom’s Army career took him through many phases; he proudly served in the U. S. Army during the Vietnam Era, following his honorable discharge from active duty he then devoted his life to the U. S. Army Reserves. In addition to the Reserves, Tom dedicated his time to The Association of the 1st Corps of Cadets in Boston as Past President and current Board Member. In 2008, at the age of 61, Tom, returned to active duty as he volunteered to go to Afghanistan and fight the War on Terrorism; he never hesitated to fight for our Country and the freedom of others. While serving in Afghanistan, Tom, was awarded several medals and commendations for his service including the Afghanistan Campaign medal with a Campaign Star, Bronze Star Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon, Armed Forces Reserve Medal and NATO Medal. Tom moved up the ranks throughout his career, earning himself the rank of Full Bird Colonel; which his family was very proud of.

Tom went to work for the Oasis Company at Hanscom AFB in March of 2016. Tom had an unwavering work ethic and great people skills; he used his military background as well as his vast knowledge in his engineering field to make himself quite an asset to the company. Tom was scheduled to retire from the company as a Senior Systems Engineer in August 2021 following many years of dedicated service.

In his “down time”, Tom, enjoyed being with his family and looked forward to family adventures and events; he always had a video recorder going to capture every moment. He was known to be the “life of the party” every now and then; he was sociable, friendly and made everyone feel welcomed. Tom loved to attend sporting events for his children and later on his grandchildren whom he adored. Tom was well read and liked to research his family history; it fascinated him. Tom enjoyed relaxing at the family condo in Bartlett, New Hampshire, with family and friends and looked forward to his Army Reserve weekends with his buddies. Tom’s latest hobby included model trains; he was in the process of building a village for his trains and was attentive to every detail.

Tom will be fondly remembered as a “great guy”, he loved his family, friends and neighbors and would go out of his way to help anyone. He was undoubtedly a Proud American and Honorable Soldier; he was always willing to put others before himself. Tom will forever be in the hearts of all who loved him.

Tom was the beloved husband of Jane M. (O’Connell) Finn, devoted father of Katharine A. “Katie” Callahan & her husband Patrick, Matthew T. Finn & his wife Deirdre and Timothy F. X. Finn & his wife Lauren all of Wilmington and Patrick J. Finn & his wife Megan Borsari-Finn of Lawrence. Loving “Grampy” of Ryan, Hannah & Emma Callahan, Liam, Daniel & Brendan Finn, Timothy, Madeleine & Wyatt Finn, and Hayden, Brody & Irelynn Finn. Cherished son of the late Thomas F., Sr. and Mary M. (Cleary) Finn, dear brother of Kevin J. Finn of Litchfield, NH. Tom is also survived by his brothers and sisters-in-law, as well as many nieces and nephews.

Family and friends will gather for Visiting Hours at the Nichols Funeral Home, 187 Middlesex Ave. (Rte. 62), Wilmington, MA, on Thursday, July 15th from 4:00 – 8:00 p.m. A Mass of Christian Burial will take place on Friday, July 16th at 10:00 a.m. in St. Theresa’s Church, 63 Winter St., North Reading, MA. Interment with Military Honors will follow in Wildwood Cemetery, Wilmington, MA.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Tom’s memory may be made to Local Heroes, Inc., P. O. Box 536, Wilmington, MA 01887.

Tom Finn

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One thought

  1. Jane, Ray and I are so sorry to hear of Tom’s passing. He was such a good guy! Prayers are with you and all your family at this time of loss. Diane (Oatis) Curran

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