Willie Joe Finley was born at Ravenna, Fannin County, Texas on 4 February 1923 to George Washington "Dick" and Martha Jane "Tenny" Walker Finley. The his birth place is located north of Ravenna just past where the road splits to go to Mulberry Community near the Red River.
He was the seventh child born out of 8 children. His siblings were in order of birth... John Wesley who was born at Round Mountain, Fisher County, Texas in 1908, Raymond Young born 1910 at Round Mountain in Fisher County, Texas, Roy Lee born 1912 at Robert Lee in Coleman County, Texas, Clarence Reed born 22 December 1914 and died 23 January 1915 from what was called boils. The next sibling was the only girl born to this family named Daisy Dell born in 1918 in Ravenna, Texas, next is George Marion born 1921 in Ravenna, Texas, Willie "Joe"born in 1923 and last was Frank Douglas born in 1928 in Roscoe, Nolen County, Texas.
Now the reason the siblings and "Joe" were born in West Texas and Fannin County indicates a family traveling quite a bit due to being sharecroppers. Another reason is that Joe's grandparents, Joel Marion and Jessie Emaline Hinshaw Walker lived near Round Mountain and Roscoe in Nolen County. Joel Walker also owned a farm north of Robert Lee in Coke County which is the county just south of Nolen. The county seat of Nolen county is Sweetwater, Texas. Joel and Jessie Walker are both buried at Roscoe Cemetery in Nolen County.
I believe that Joe's parents meet in Nolen or Fisher county where they join each other as both families lived there in the 1900 census.
Enlisted Record and Report of Separation
#1 - Willie Joe Finley
# 2 - 38 529 191 Army Serial No.
#3 - Grade: CPL
#4 - Arm of Service: INF
#5 - Component: AUS
#6 - Organization: Company L 169th Infantry
#7 - Date of Separation: 19 Oct 45
#8 - Place of Separation: Fort Sam Houston, Texas
#9 - Mailing Address: Rt. 3 Bonham, Fannin Co. Texas
#10 - Date of birth: 4 Feb 23
#11 - Place of Birth: Ravenna, Texas
#12 - See # 9
#13 - Color Eyes: Brown
#14 - Color Hair: Brown
# 15 - Height: 5'8" # 16 - Weight 129 lbs.
#17 - No of Dependants: 0
#18 - White, #19 - Single, #20 - US Citizen-Yes
#21 - Civilian Occupation & No. : Farmer 3-16.10
#22 - Date of Induction: 26 May 43
#23 - -----
#24 - Date of Entering Active Service: 2 Jun 1943
#25 - Place of Entry into Service: Ind Sta Dallas Texas
Selective Service Date: #26 - Registered-yes
#27 - Local SS Board No. 2
#28 - County & State: Fannin Co. Texas
#29 - Work Address at time of Entry into Service: Ravenna, Fannin Co. TX
#30 - Military Occupational Specialty and No. Gunner 603
#31 - Military Qualifications and Date: Combat Infantrymans Badge 5 Jul 44
#32 - Battles and Campaigns: Bismarck-Archipelago; New Guinea; Southern Philippines; Luzon GO 33 WD 45
#33 - Decorations and Citations: Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with 4 Bronze Stars and 1 Bronze Arrowhead; Philippines Liberation Medal with 2 Bronze Stars - Good Conduct Medal; 3 Overseas Service Bars
#34 - Wounds Received in Action: None
#35 - Latest Immunization Dates: Smallpox-21 Jun 44; Typhoid-28 May 45; Tetanus-31 Dec 43; Other-Cholera 28 May 45
#36 - Date of Departure: 22 Nov 43--Destination: AP--Date of Arrival: 9 Dec 43
- Date of Departure:27 Sep 45 Destination: U S --Date of Arrival 8 Oct 45
#37 - Continental Service: Months 6; Days 7; Years --Foreign Service: Years 1; Months 10; Days 17
#38 - Highest Grade Held: CPL
#39 - Prior Service - None
#40 - Reason and Authority for Separation: Convenience of the Government (RR 1-1 Demobilization) AR 615-365 15 Dec 44
#41 - Service Schools Attended: None
#42 - Education (Years) Grammar: 8 --High School - 0 --College - 0
#43 - Longevity for Papy Purposes: 2 yrs 4 months 24 days
#44 - $300 Total This Payment $100
#45 - Soldier Deposits - none
#46 - Travel Pay - $70.00
#47 - Total amount ..Name of disbursing Officer: $50.00cash Carlos De Lima Check Capt FD
#48 - Kind of Insurance: Nation Service
#49 - How rated: Allotment
#50 - Effective Date of Allotment Discontinuance: 30 Sep 45
#51 - Date of Next Premium: 31 Oct 45
#52 - Premium Due each month: $6.50
#53 - Intention of Veteran to: Discontinue
#54 - Right Thumb Print
#55 - Remarks - Lapel Button Issued ASR Score (2 Sep 1945) - 70
#56 - Signature of Person being Separated: Willie J. Finley
#57 - Personnel Officer: M. L. Clifton CWO USA Ass't Mil Pers Officer
Stamped with Readjustment Allowance Public Law #246 Made Through State Texas Date; 10/24/45 OCL
Filed the Honorable Discharge
The State of Texas
County of Fannin
I hereby certify that the foregoing instrument is duly recored this 26 day of July A.D. 1946 at 4:30 o'clock p.m. Teisela (sp) Records of said County, Vol. 5 page 320. Given under my hand and seal of office in the City of Bonham day and date above written.
Ray Shuler, Clerk County Court Fannin County, Texas
Gladys Haskins, Depty
S C Mays Major Inf
1942 Willie Joe, Martha Walker Finley (mother) & brother George Marion. Both brothers served in the South Pacific Theater during WWII but in different units. Willie Joe & George Marion 1945 George died in June 2008 at the Veterans Nursing Center in Madill, Oklahoma.
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