John was born in Silloth, Cumberland on 2nd November 1898 to parents William and Sarah. The family were recorded living at 37 Southey Street in Workington, Cumberland, on the 1901 census; John was the youngest of five children and aged three at the time. Ten years later John was aged thirteen and attended school. His four eldest siblings had left the family home at 23 South Marsh Street, Workington. Once John had finished school he worked as an Assistant Toll Collector on the North Eastern Railway for 3.5 years before joining the Navy at Portsmouth on 8th November 1916 for the duration of hostilities.
John was 5'8" tall, had brown hair and grey eyes. He was stationed at HMS VICTORY I as an Ordinary Seaman from his joining date until 28th January 1917 before embarking to his only ship posting, HMS VANGUARD, on 29th January 1917.
He was just 19 when killed. His Victory and British War medals were claimed by his mother following his death.
(#201 - 514/843)
England & Wales, Civil Registration Birth Index, 1837-1915 Free BMD
1901 & 1911 England Census
Royal Navy Registers of Seamen's Services, 1848-1939 National Archives of the UK; Kew, Surrey, England; Royal Navy Registers of Seamen's Services; Class: ADM 188; Piece: 770
British Army and Navy Birth, Marriage and Death Records, 1730-1960 ational Archives of the UK; Kew, Surrey, England; Admiralty: Naval Casualties, Indexes, War Grave Rolls and Statistics Book, First World War.; Class: ADM 242; Piece: Piece 009; Piece Description: Piece 009 (1914 - 1919)
Royal Navy and Royal Marine War Graves Roll, 1914-1919 TNA Series: ADM 242/9; Scan Number: 0426
Naval Medal and Award Rolls, 1793-1972 Class: ADM 171; Piece: 109
Photo courtesy of National Railway Museum