John was born in Wolverhampton in 1889, the son of Samuel and Mary A. Garner. In 1891 they were living at 67 Lower Street, Tettenhall, with John’s brothers Samuel, Joseph E., Henry P. and Thomas M., and sisters Jannette, Annie and Florence. In 1901 they were living at 119 Lower Street, Tettenhall, and were joined by brother Thomas Montague.
John enlisted in the 6th Battalion of the South Staffordshire Regiment (number 2291), but was killed in action in France on 13 October 1915. He is commemorated on the Loos Memorial, as well as on the war memorial at St Michael & All Angels Church in Tettenhall.