He was born in Rotunda Hospital , Dublin in 1913. A firstborn son to Helen and Charles Henry Finlay. Just another Irish boy, who would always uphold his ancestory with pride.
But he was not just any Irish boy, to most of those that knew him.
He was special.
Charlie and his Golden Girl had many an ‘adventure’ after this photo was taken!
He travelled to Africa, to make a new life for his young bride and two children in 1948.
Long before this, though, his family had moved to Limerick. He had a younger sister, Nell and a brother John. (He always called him ‘Brother John’).
They lost their Dad in 1926, and Charlie had to go out and look for a job to help support his Mam, sister and brother John. His youth and schooling was cut short. But his education did not stop because of this.
That was how his career in flour milling began. One of his life long friendships began in the Ranks flour mill in Limerick, Ireland. That of Arthur Mc Dermott.
Charlie ran study groups to help others to achieve after he became a qualified miller. Well paid work was hard to come by, but there were jobs for the qualified.
He bought a ring at James Morgan Jewellers in Patrick Street, Cork; and waited for his lady to make up her mind on the date. And she did keep him waiting! The rest is history.
In 1945 they were parents to their first daughter.
Brother John had followed his then girlfriend, Kitty from Kilmacow to London, but split up with her soon after.
He met Esther and married on 26th July 1947 in England.
Both Helen and Nell attended. John and Esther went on to have two daughters, Sheila and Jean.
Their trip was paid for by the milling company who needed qualified men such as Charles.
They travelled to England and said their farewells to Mam, Nell and John in Reading, England.
The adventure began on 6th January 1948 with a three year old and an eight week old baby as they boarded the ship in Southampton. They arrived in a strange land, with no friends nor family to greet them.
They were immigrants. And they stayed for the rest of their lives, had two more children – and it was home to them always.
The story does not end here.
Charlie had a grand daughter who married in South African and also immigrated, but to Ireland almost 60 years to the day from when Eleanor and Charlie had made a similar journey; only then it was from Northern hemisphere to Southern.
They arrived in Dublin with no friends nor family to greet them, with two children.
They are still there now.
A year later, a new baby was born.
He was born in Rotunda hospital in Dublin in December 2007.
Charlie in some strange sort of way, was back!
The End (please click)