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John was born in Wolverhampton on 25 October 1891 the son of John and Rose H. Cammies. From 1896 onwards, he attended St Edward’s Infant School in Wolverhampton. In 1901, he was living at 61 Shale Street, Bilston, Wolverhampton, with his parents and sibligs Samuel, Rose H., Polly, Fanny, Thomas and Julia. By 1911 he was living wtih relatives in Lancashire, and working as a coal miner – drawer below ground. John married Annie Millington in Leigh in 1915.

John enlisted initially in the Manchester Regiment (number 14/10620), and later served with the 9th Battalion of the Northumberland Fusiliers (number 41151). He was wounded, and died of these wounds on 23 August 1918. He is buried at Aire Communal Cemetery, in France.