John was born in Wolverhampton in 1878, the son of Horace V. and Caroline or Kate Emery. He was baptised in Wednesfield on 13 October 1878. By 1901 they were living at 102 Wolverhampton Road, Heath Town, together with John’s brothers Horace and Austin and sister Louisa. John was a baker and bread maker. In 1908, he married Martha Maria Jane Griffiths in Wolverhampton. By 1911, they lived at 190 Wolverhampton Road, Heath Town (although his wife was listed as “Jennie”), and they had three daughters – Joyce, Marcia and Mavis.
John enlisted in the 4th Battalion of the Lincolnshire Regiment (number 203758). He was killed in action during the Battle of Cambrai on 6 December 1917. Unfortunately, his wife was to have a further daughter, Hazel, whose birth was registered in the December quarter of 1917, so it is possible that he never met her. John is remembered at the Cambrai memorial in Louverval, as well as on the memorial in Heath Park.