William Thomas Gray was born at Doncaster Street, Liverpool on the 3rd August 1879 and was baptised at St.Peter's C.of E. Church, Liverpool on the 31st August.
 
He was the eldest son of William Thomas Gray and Catharine (nee Jones). His parents were both natives of Liverpool and were married at St.Peter's C.of E. Church, Everton in 1878.
 
William had at least nine younger siblings; John H (b 1881), Alice (b 1883), Elizabeth (b 1884), Hannah (b 1887), Ellen (b 1889), Catherine (b 1891), Amelia (b 1895), Jane (b 1897) and Stanley (b 1900).
 
William Gray senior was a carter. In 1881 the family were living at 15 Benledi Street, Liverpool and in 1891 at 8h in 7ct Torr Street, Everton.
 
William junior had left home to serve in the army by 1901 but his family were living at 8 Kew Street, Liverpool. His father was away from home at the time of the 1901 census and had died by 1903 when his widow Catherine remarried at St.George's C.of E. Church, Everton to George Birchall, who was also a carter.
 
In 1911 the Birchall/Gray family were living at 91 Beatrice Street, Bootle. The family comprised of George and Catherine Birchall, two of George's children - Henry and Hetty Birchall, and six of Catherine's children - John, Ellen, Catherine, Amelia, Jane and Stanley.
 
William Thomas Gray junior enlisted in the King's Liverpool Regiment in 1897 and served in the Boer War.
 
After leaving the army he returned to Liverpool where he married Elizabeth Thompson, a native of Rock Ferry, Cheshire, in the West Derby Registration District in 1907
 
By 1911 he was working as a carter and was living at 3 Penrose Street, Everton with his wife and their two daughters, Florence (b 26th January 1910) and Edith (b 3rd February 1911). Two further children had died in infancy. A third daughter, Dorothy, was born on the 28th June 1914.
 
William's service records have survived. They showed he enlisted in the army at Liverpool on the 11th September 1914, aged 35 years and 31 days.
 
He was 5ft 6 inches tall and weighed 129lbs. His eyes were grey and his hair was brown and he had a tattoo of crossed flags and the letters RFA. His religion was Church of England and his next of kin was his wife.
 
He was posted overseas on the 3rd March 1915. His youngest daughter, Dorothy, died three weeks later on the 26th March 1915, aged nine months.
 
William was killed in action on the 27th April 1915. His youngest daughter, Gladys, was born five months after his death on the 20th September 1915.
A report on his death appeared in the Evening Express on the 25th May 1915. His photo appeared in the report and is reproduced here with the kind permission of the Liverpool Daily Post & Echo.
 
BOER WAR VETERAN'S FATE.
   William Thomas Gray, a private in the 4th Battalion of the King's (Liverpool Regiment), who was recently killed in action, joined the colours in September, but had previously served with the King's in the Boer war. He had taken part in several engagements, and it was in the vicinity of Hill 60 that he met his fate. A widow and two children, residing at 3, Penrose-street, Everton, survive him. Prior to the war he was engaged as a carter, and was well known on the Dock-road.

Evening Express 25th May 1915

 
De Ruvigny's Roll of Honour (volume one, page 160) contains the following biography.
 
GRAY, WILLIAM THOMAS, Private, No. 19749, 4th Battn. King's Liverpool Regt., s. of William Gray; b. Kirkdale, Liverpool, 23 Aug. 1879; educ. Ashfield Street Board School there; was a Carter; joined the 6th King's Liverpool Volunteer Regt. 12 July, 1897; volunteered for the South African War, 9 March 1900; served in that campaign one year and 79 days (medal with three clasps), invalided home; retired 20 Dec. 1902; on the outbreak of the European War re-enlisted 11 Sept. 1914, killed in action at Hill 60, 27 April, 1915. He m. at Liverpool, 8 Jan. 1907, Elizabeth (3, Penrose Street, Everton, Liverpool), dau. of James Thompson, and had issue three daus.: Florence, b. 28 Jan. 1910; Edith, b. 3 Feb. 1911; and Gladys, b. 20 Sept. 1915.
 
William's sister, Catherine Gray, married John William Hughes of Bootle in 1914. John's letters home to his old headmaster, Mr Stringer of Hawthorne Road School, appeared regularly in the Bootle Times.
 
 A letter written from the American Women's Hospital, Paignton, Devon which was published on the 25th June 1915 reads, "I have received news of both my brother and a brother-in-law being killed while I have been in hospital - you may have seen the photo. Pte. W. Gray, who served in South Africa, was killed at Hill 60, while my brother was killed at Festubert. I have still another brother in law out in France with the 1st K.L.R."
 
John Hughes' brother was Richard Evan Hughes who was killed in action on the 15th May 1916