The Soldier's Details

Surname:
Firns
First Name:
Thomas Edward
Nick Name:
Tom
Rank:
Private
Regimental #:
WX7225
Classification:
Carpenter
Company:
Headquarters Company, No. 3 Platoon
Enlisted:
1.08.1940
Discharged:
8.01.1946
DOB:
9.06.1900
Place of Birth:
Serpentine, Western Australia
Father's Name:
Charles Firns
Mothers's Name:
Eliza Firns (nee Day)
Religion:
Church of England
Pre-war Occupation:
Gold Prospector
Singapore:
Selarang Camp Changi; Johore Bahru; Adam Park; Selarang Barracks Changi; Changi Gaol Camp
Return Details 1945:
Singapore-Darwin-Sydney, HMT Arawa; Sydney-Melbourne by troop train; Melbourne-Fremantle, HMT Strathmore

General Description

Able Seaman Tom Firns WW1
Able Seaman Tom Firns WW1

 

This soldier had enlisted in Royal Australian Navy on 30th September 1918.  He served as a stoker, Service No. 6880 at HMAS Cerebus, Westernport Bay, Victoria.  He also served onboard HMAS Melbourne and HMAS Sydney until he received a medical discharge on 9th September 1920.

Back row L-R E. Preedy, J. Heffernan, J. Holt, Bluey Smith, Lin Powell, R Kelt, 2nd row - Tom Firns, H. Elkins,Scotty McEwan, Front row - Darkie Rennie, Unknown, R Newling, J. Quinn, Barney Doolan
Back row L-R E. Preedy, J. Heffernan, J. Holt, Bluey Smith, Lin Powell, R Kelt, 2nd row – Tom Firns, H. Elkins,Scotty McEwan, Front row – Darkie Rennie, Unknown, R Newling, J. Quinn, Barney Doolan

 

Tom was the 5th of 7 sons born to Charles Firns and Eliza Day, and he had one sister, the youngest born.  He attended school at Serpentine from 1906-1914 where the Firns family resided.

An older brother Hobart Douglas Firn born in 1895 enlisted in WW1 and was killed 29 August 1915 at Lone Pine.

Tom enlisted whilst residing in Kalgoorlie.

Tom was recovered from Changi 4 September 1945, and returned to WA on 19 September 1945.

The following are his POW movements:

Changi Feb-April 1942

Easter-May 1942 Johore Bahru

May-Nov 1942  Adam Park

Nov 1942-Aug 1945 Changi

It appears Tom suffered vitamin deficiency diseases and dermatitis during his incarceration.

Tom married in February 1946 to Kathleen Day Pead.

Firns Tom

 

Tom Firns died 11 June 1969.  Kathleen died in 1996.

 

 

 

Camp Locations:

  • Adam Park Camp - Singapore
  • Changi Gaol Camp - Singapore
  • Johore Bahru, - Malaysia
  • Selarang Barracks Changi - Singapore
  • Selarang Camp Changi - Singapore
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