Daniel was born in Bridgnorth in 1897, the son of Samuel Thomas and Phoebe Onions. By 1901, they were living at 9 Beacon Street, Sedgley, with Daniel’s brothers James Beaconsfield, John Arthur Balfour, Samuel Thomas, Charles Henry and George Frederick. By 1911 they were at 152 Caledonian Street, Wolverhampton, and Daniel had two additional siblings, Phoebe Sarah and Joseph Edwin. Daniel attended the Higher Grade and Technical Schools in Wolverhampton.
On 22 June 1915, he enlisted with the Royal Engineers (service number 103777). He became a Wireless Operator Learner, and was later a Pioneer and then a Sapper. By June 1915, his trade was clerk. He qualified as a Proficient Telegraphist on 19 May 1916. He served both at home and with the Egyptian Expeditionary Force with the Wireless Section at Giza. On 9 February 1918 he was sent home from hospital as being no longer physically fit for war service following sickness, and was discharged on 2 March 1918. On 16 February 1918 he was issued with a Silver War Badge (number 336114).
Daniel married Alice Lawley in Aston in 1918, and the couple had four sons – Raymond (1919 in Aston), Kenneth (1921), Maurice G. (1923) and Malcolm S. (1931) – the latter three being born in Wolverhampton. Daniel died at St George’s Hospital, Stafford, on 29 July 1965, by which date his address was 6 Vauxhall House, Vauxhall Avenue, Wolverhampton. The value of his effects was £289.