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Solomon Fine "Solly"

Born:
1899
Died:
7 Sivan 5678 (18 May 1918)

Basic Information

Unique reference:
FIN4543
Gender:
Male

Birth

Date of birth:
1899
Place of birth:
Monmouthshire, South Wales

Death

Date of death:
7 Sivan 5678 (18 May 1918)
Died in combat?:
Yes
Place of death:
Contay
Cause of death:
Plane crash-landing during a storm
Burial place:
Contay British Cemetary, France. Burial VIII.A.21

Places

Addresses

Family home:
28 South Church Rd, Southend on Sea (1911)

Schools

Name:
London Road School
Name:
Southend High School for Boys
Name:
Southend Technical School
Year started:
1911
Year left:
1913
Name:
Scotland School of Aeronautics

Other Organisations

Name:
Jewish Lads Brigade
Name:
Southend Technical School Cadet Corp
 < Close personal journey map
Personal Journey map
Solomon Fine
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Army Service Corp to Royal Flying Corp

Solomon was in the Essex Motor Volunteer Corps (EMVC) based in Hamlet Court Road for some months, his squadron Commander describing him as “smart, capable and most intelligent” when recommending his application for the Inns Of Court Training Corps. However, Solomon enlisted as a Private (No. 70743, later M/287563) with the Machine Transport section of the Army Service Corps (A.S.C.) in February 1917 as a Driver.

He had been a Driver for five months when he was recommended for a transfer to the Royal Flying Corps (R.F.C.). Mr. Hitchcock, the Technical School’s Headmaster wrote a letter in support of his application in which he described Solomon as:
“A lad of good intelligence and trustworthy in conduct. He went through two years of the Secondary School course and gained a good knowledge of Elementary Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics as well as the ordinary English subjects.”

(Southend Museums)

Letters in memorium

A letter from his Flight Commander read: “I am writing on behalf of the officers of A Flight to express our heartfelt sympathy at the loss you have sustained through the death of our gallant comrade. Although he had not been with us long he was very popular and showed signs of being one of our most useful pilots. His work was the preliminary of, alas! What might have been. As I was his Flight Commander for some time I knew him very intimately and have never met such an enthusiastic pilot before. As long as there is a Squadron in France, his name will always be remembered. In another packet I am sending you photographs of his resting place. The memorial at the head was made by his own mechanics and daily the French children come and place flowers there. It will be a comfort to you that he died as he lived, a very gallant gentleman. When his country called he answered freely and his death has made a milestone on our road to victory.”


His Commanding Officer wrote that: “Lieutenant Fine and his observer were on patrol, when a most violent thunderstorm came up, overtaking them on their way back to the aerodrome. The pilot rightly endeavoured to land at the moment the storm broke, and the wind put the machine into a spin, from which it never recovered; the pilot and observer being instantly killed. He was becoming a very good, keen and valuable war pilot.”

(Southend Museums)

Family

Siblings

Louis Fine (male)
Golda Fine (female)
Sadie Fine (female)

Parents

Father: Harry Fine (male)
Mother: Louise Fine (female)

Homefront

Military Record

Military service:
Army / Air Force
Date enlisted/conscripted:
1917
Date discharged/death:
18 May 1918
Rank at discharge/death:
2nd Lieutenant
Assignments
Regiment:
Army Service Corp
Battalion/unit:
Machine Transport (M/287563)
Regiment:
Royal Flying Corp
Regiment:
Royal Air Force

Roll of Honour

S. FINE, 18 May 1918

Commonwealth Graves Commission

Rank:
Lieutenant
Date of Death:
18/05/1918
Age:
19
Regiment / service:
15th Sqdn., Royal Air Force
Cemetery:
Contay British Cemetery, Contay
Grave reference:
VIII. A. 21.
Additional information:

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London Jews in the First World War - We Were There Too

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