Walter was born in Plumstead, Kent on 10th January 1895 to William and Jane and the middle of 3 children listed on the 1901 census. His father was not recorded at the home, 31 Eton Street, Plumstead, but the family were helped out by his Uncle Walter (Gillespie) also staying at the home.
He joined the Navy on 27th October 1909 as a Boy 2nd Class and stayed at HMS GANGES until 4th February 1910 for his basic training. He was 5’5” tall, with light brown hair and grey eyes.
The remainder of his service follows:
HMS IMPREGNABLE - 05/02/1910 - 09/10/1910, rising to Boy 1st Class on 03/05/1910
HMS ESSEX - 10/10/1910 - 19/01/1911
HMS PEMBROKE I - 20/01/1911 - 02/02/1911
HMS HOGUE - 03/02/1911 - 15/05/1911, recorded on the 1911 census, the ship anchored at Margate
HMS PEMBROKE I - 16/05/1911 - 16/05/1911
HMS SHANNON - 17/05/1911 - 11/03/1913, rising to Ordinary Seaman on 10/01/1912 and Able Seaman on 13/02/1913
HMS PEMBROKE I - 12/03/1913 - 08/09/1913
HMS BLONDE - 09/09/1913 - 23/03/1915, rising to Leading Seaman on 13/02/1915
HMS PEMBROKE I - 24/03/1915 - 27/08/1915
HMS VANGUARD - 28/08/1915 - 09/07/1917, participating aboard at the Battle of Jutland
He died aged 22 and was awarded the Star, Victory and British war medals for his service.
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: 658
British Army and Navy Birth, Marriage and Death Records, 1730-1960 National Archives of the UK; Kew, Surrey, England; Admiralty: Naval Casualties, Indexes, War Grave Rolls and Statistics Book, First World War.; Class: ADM 242; Piece: 008 (1914 - 1919)
British Army and Navy Birth, Marriage and Death Records, 1730-1960 National Archives of the UK; Kew, Surrey, England; Admiralty and predecessors: Office of the Director General of the Medical Department of the Navy and predecessors: Service Registers and Registers of Deaths and Injuries. Registers of Reports of Deaths
Royal Navy and Royal Marine War Graves Roll, 1914-1919 TNA Series: ADM 242/8; Scan Number: 0276
WWI Pension Ledgers and Index Cards, 1914-1923 Western Front Association; London, England; WWI Pension Record Cards and Ledgers; Reference: 066/0298/ELL-ELL
Naval Medal and Award Rolls, 1793-1972 Class: ADM 171; Piece: 101
Photo courtesy of Bexley Archives.