A labourer from Darlinghurst, New South Wales, Garfield Finlay enlisted on 22 January 1915. After serving with the 12th Light Horse Regiment, he transferred to the Australian Flying Corps. As an observer with 1 Squadron, he scored eight victories before receiving pilot training toward the end of the war. He returned to Australia on 5 March 1919. During World War II he was a Wing Commander in the Royal Australian Air Force.
Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC)
"Lieut. (A./Capt.) Allan Runciman Brown (Australian F.C.). (EGYPT)
Lieut. Garfield Finlay (Australian F.C.). (EGYPT)
On 22nd August Capt. Brown, with Lieut. Finlay as his observer, attacked an enemy two-seater, forcing it to land in our lines. On four other occasions these officers have engaged and destroyed enemy aircraft, displaying marked gallantry and skill. In addition, they have rendered most valuable service in attacking enemy cavalry, anti-aircraft guns and other ground targets, inflicting heavy loss."
Supplement to the London Gazette, 8 February 1919 (31170/2035)