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Mary Ellen Fairbairn (nee McNamara) 1881-1955 by Ann Rackstraw

Mary Ellen and Henry Hunter Fairbairn’s children
   f. Jessie Doreen Fairbairn

Jessie Doreen Fairbairn
1917 - 6 May 1980

Married 14 Jun 1941

Patrick Robert Foley
22 May 1916 - 15 Mar 1991

f. Jessie Doreen Fairbairn. Her married name was Foley. She was born in 1917 at Women's Hospital, Carlton Central, Victoria. The family was living at Shields St Flemington at the time (Federation Index, Victoria 1914-1920, Reg No 18907 and information provided by Jessie's sister, Margaret Rackstraw).

Wedding of Jessie Fairbairn and Patrick Foley
Wedding of Jessie Fairbairn and Patrick Foley, 1941
At left behind the groom is Lachlan Fairbairn, the bride’s brother
The others are unknown
Photograph provided by John Rackstraw

She married Patrick Robert Foley, son of Michael Joseph Foley and Alice May Hecker, on 14 Jun 1941 at the Presbyterian Church, Flemington, Victoria. Their marriage was conducted by Presbyterian Minister, the Rev Alexander Allison MacKenzie, the witnesses were G.B. Males and E. Mathrick.

The following details were recorded on their Marriage Certificate:
Jessie, Spinster, age 23, occupation - Packer, present and usual address - 8 Brighton St Flemington.
Patrick, Bachelor, age 25, occupation - Labourer, present and usual address - 77 Railway Place West, Flemington
(Vic Marriage Certificate No 8975).

Jessie died of a sudden Cerebrovascular accident on 6 May 1980, aged 62, at 27 Guest Ave, St Albans, Victoria, the informant was her son Michael Foley (Vic Death Certificate No 10292). Her body was cremated on 9 May 1980 at Memorial Park Crematorium, North Altona. Her ashes are located at IP (Individual Position) 0153 (Altona Memorial Park, website).

Jessie and Patrick had nine children, five boys and four girls.

Patrick Robert Foley

Patrick Robert Foley was born on 22 May 1916 at Hotham West, Victoria (Great War Index Reg No 1916 and WW2 Nominal Roll).

Patrick enlisted in the Australian Army in WW2:
Service No V305062
Date of Birth 22 May 1916
Place of Birth North Melbourne, Vic
Date of Enlistment 14 Aug 1940
Locality on Enlistment Newmarket Vic
Place of Enlistment Moonee Ponds, Vic
Next of Kin Foley, J
Date of discharge Unknown
Rank Gunner
Posting at discharge 7 Anti Tank Regiment
(WW2 Nominal Roll, Commonwealth of Australia, website).

Additional information extracted from Patrick’s service file:
Religion RC
Hair Fair
Eyes Blue
Occupation Calf and sheep skin classer
Next of Kin originally listed as his mother, Alice May Foley, 77 Railway Place Newmarket (his mother died in Dec 1940)

An undated note later added to the file records Patrick's private address as 159A Barkley Ave Burnley.

Patrick was transferred on 5 Nov 1941 to Mt Martha. On 12 Dec 1941 he was granted Leave without pay. On 17 Feb 1942 Patrick was transferred from Mt Martha to Area 58A (Res Occ). This may indicate that he was transferred into employment with a company involved in production for the war effort. (The name ‘Qualcast’ is written across the first page of the file, this may indicate the name of the company which employed Patrick) (WW2 Service File, NAA Series No B884, Barcode 6261276).

Patrick died on 15 Mar 1991, aged 74. His remains are located at RP (Rockpool) 13, GN (Ground Niche) 050 (Altona Memorial Park, website).


Henry David Fairbairn


Thomas Gordon Fairbairn