Thomas Patrick McGuire was born at 17, Evelyn Street, Cardiff, Glamorgan on March 3, 1898. There is not much known about his early life in Newport. He was a thin man but was also tough. It is said by relatives that knew him when he was young, that he was a street fighter. Bets were placed on various opponents from different pubs too bare knuckle fight and Tom was supposed to be one of the best. In the 1920's he had an accident whilst working at a local power station when his arm got caught in a conveyor belt. The doctor that was called to attend to him wanted to amputate his arm there and then but Tom would not let him. After hospitalisation Tom's arm was saved and he had a total of 54 stitches where the arm joined the shoulder.
Tom received compensation for the accident and with it he bought two boats so that he could sail down the Usk Estuary where the river Usk joins the river Ebbw and dig out the coal dust that had been washed down the Ebbw from the mines in the South Wales valleys. This coal dust was then sold to the power station where Tom had his accident.
He also bought his nephew, Frank Abraham his first box of paints. Frank went on to be a very well known artist and sculptor.
In the 1920's it appears that Gwynneth and Ann Gillard were friendly with the McGuire family and on August 5, 1929, Ann married Tom's half-brother John (Vivian John).
Then on November 7, 1931 Tom married Gwynneth at St. Michael's church in the Pill area of Newport.
From this union they had four children, Pamela Francis, Mary Karen (Kay), Wendy Josephine and Shaun.
Tom worked as a labourer for many years and his job until he retired in 1963 was working for Monsanto Chemical works as a pipe fitters mate. Some of his former workmates that I met in the 1980's told me that if you gave him a rope he could climb anywhere in the factory. He was so light they said, that he if he was on a ladder they they would give him a steel pipe to hold him down in case the wind blew him away. Tom was exceptionally well liked by his work colleagues.
For many years the family lived at Park Drive, Newport and on August 8, 1975 Tom died at his home from cancer of the bladder.
Click on images
Tom (far left with towel) as the trainer for the Pill YMCA rugby football team, 1919/1920
Tom, June 1961 at Park Drive and with June (Shaun's wife) at Karen's (his niece) wedding, June 29, 1974
The family home in Park Drive and with the family about 1954