Francis was born in 1889 in Shifnal, Shropshire, the son of Joseph King and Annie P. Thorns. By 1891, the family had moved to 8 Caton Mews South, St George’s Hannover Square, London. I have not been able to find him on either the 1901 or 1911 censuses. He became “a violinist of great promise” and was a member of the Queen’s Hall Orchestra in London. He was also a Licentiate and Associate of the Royal Academy of Music. In September 1913, he was appointed as music master of Tettenhall College.
He became a Second Lieutenant in the 5th Battalion of the Royal Berkshire Regiment, first serving in France from 26 May 1916. However, he had only been at the front for a matter of days when he was mortally wounded in Flanders, dying on 31 May 1916. The value of his effects were £341 14s. 6d. This was reported in the Express & Star on 7 June 1916.