J ohn J. Flynn, Sr. was born on Buena Vista Avenue in downtown Yonkers on October 12, 1893, the oldest of nine children of John P. and Bridget (Hogan) Flynn, both natives of Ireland. He received his education at St. Mary's Parochial School and Yonkers High School, obtaining his professional training at the Renouard School of Embalming in New York City firm which he was graduated in June 1919.
As a youth he was a newspaper boy and worked at various times for the Otis Elevator Company, the Waring Hat Company, for a Wall Street brokerage firm and at the former Federal Sugar Refinery.
In 1917, he enlisted in World War I. His military training prepared him for front line medical care of the wounded and early in 1918 he went to France where he served on four fronts. He became a medical Sargent on a surgical team headed by Captain John Moorehead.
Captain Moorehead later became Colonel and was at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. For his front line service, John Flynn was decorated for bravery by the French Government.
His medical experience in the Army led him to his profession, and after graduation from Renouard, he established the firm of John J. Flynn, Inc. in the Philipsburg Building on Hudson Street opposite Saint John's Episcopal Church in Getty Square.
Three years later, he changed the firm name to Foley and Flynn. His partner, Harry T. Foley, later became Westchester County Democratic Chairman and surveyor of the Port of New York.
In 1939, Mr. Flynn acquired the business from Mr. Foley and reverted to the original title "John J. Flynn, Inc. - The Flynn Memorial Home."