Family History by Tainia Finlay

Featured in the Woman Photographer group 13th of June 2009
Featured in ‘Live Love Dream’ on the 18th of June, 2009

Three years ago my mother in the UK lost all her worldly belongings in a house fire. I very nearly lost her, some men passing by dragged her out, the next thing she remembered was waking up in hospital with just the clothes she was wearing. That’s all.

I have spent the past few years trying to replace artifacts of her memory, I found, bought & gave her a Sweetheart Badge of WW2, pictures of York, uk .. the list is endless. Though she was insured mum said it was like living in a hotel room, everything was new. No history or memories.

This evening I uncovered a jewel! I have some old photographs I am scanning to send. I asked mum about the one with the Spaniel, when was it taken?

This image was taken in about 1943. Michael is the name of the spaniel. Michael was onboard the first ever flight dropping leaflets on Germany early in the war. His owner, SQD Leader Harry Duddon on a later mission without Michael was shot down and held POW in Stalag lll the infamous Nazi camp.

Mum was the carer of Michael till his release. I never knew this until this evening. I am amazed and very proud.

Thank you for looking.

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old, dog, mother, proud, uk, ww2, wwll, stalag lll

I have always been involved in photography and have worked as a professional for twenty years, moving to Australia from the UK eleven years ago.

Please visit my website Tainia Finlay Photography

All my works can be bought there and I am available for commissions within Australia.

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  • Angelsmurf
    Angelsmurfalmost 6 years ago

    Fantastic Tai and thanks ever so much for sharing. xx

  • Thanks Ruth, I’m glad you enjoyed the ‘snapshot’ of history xx

    – Tainia Finlay

  • Phil Thomson IPA
    Phil Thomson IPAalmost 6 years ago

    A great find of a beautiful image with some incredible, fascinating stories attached to it, Tai !!!!

  • Many thanks indeed Phil, it illustrates to me how important it is to find out about these things before it’s too late. I thought it was just a lovely image of mum with a dog until I asked her .

    – Tainia Finlay

  • Sally Omar
    Sally Omaralmost 6 years ago

    Beautiful…and definitely a fascinating story!!!! xoxoxoxo

  • Thank you dear Sally xx

    – Tainia Finlay

  • Jenny Ryan
    Jenny Ryanalmost 6 years ago

  • Thank you so much Jen, I feel very honoured!

    – Tainia Finlay

  • rodsfotos
    rodsfotosalmost 6 years ago

    Such a touching story Tai, I can well understand the pride you hold for your Mother and I’m sure she is equally proud of her daughter for so many reasons, not least your caring ways and how you are scanning these old images that are so much a part of her past, thankfully she survived the awful fire even though her loss of the past in her posessions of keepsakes was a bitter blow,
    Regards, Rod.

  • Thank you for your thoughtful reply Rod. Mum always says she is lucky to be here, which she is. Also that possessions are not what counts but people, she is so right! I know though that she went through a grieving process when she used to think of things that had gone. Kindest regards, Tai

    – Tainia Finlay

  • dinghysailor1
    dinghysailor1almost 6 years ago

    marvellously evocative and a very special capture indeed

  • Thank you so much ding! Also for the fave, delighted you like it :D

    – Tainia Finlay

  • jockey
    jockeyalmost 6 years ago

    Lovely story Tainia, and mum was a very attractive young woman in her day…Those living in England during the war must of endured some terrible hardships…

  • Kind thanks bill! They did indeed endure hardships. I went to a WW2 restaurant in York once where the steak & kidney pie looked like something a bird would eat … Dad said what did you expect? LOL!!

    – Tainia Finlay

  • dougie1
    dougie1almost 6 years ago

    wonderful tai, a year after i was born! xxx

  • OOOW your a war baby dougles!! xx

    – Tainia Finlay

  • Di Jenkins
    Di Jenkinsalmost 6 years ago

    What you are doing for your Mum is extraordinary Tainia! So thoughtful and I’m sure means the World to her. This is a great story you’ve uncovered too – our parents did have lives before we came into the World (LOL!), and there’s so much we don’t know about them!!! Wonderful old photo & story!!! Great work Hon!!!

  • Thank you so much Di! Lovely comments much appreciated. I would have thought this was just an image of mum with a dog had I not asked her. It shows the importance of finding out about things before it’s too late!!

    – Tainia Finlay

  • Sue Martin
    Sue Martinalmost 6 years ago

    Well, I can just about see the screen now after wiping away the tears!! It’s hard living here and having our Mum’s in the UK Tai… She is a beautiful woman who has a beautiful daughter on the inside as well as the outside.. xx

  • Sue you have got me at it now!! LOL Yes it is difficult at times being so far away from them isn’t it. Love sure does reach around the world though however far apart we may be. Thanks Sue for your lovely comments xx

    – Tainia Finlay

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