William Edwin Shepherd was born in Poplar, east London, on 16th December 1898. William’s father, also named William, was a foreman in the London docks. William Jr. was the eldest of three children; his sister, Ada, and brother, Eric, were two and seven years younger than him respectively.
At the time of the 1911 census, the family was living at 3 Gerald Road, Canning Town, and William was aged just 12. William joined the Navy and worked aboard the submarine HMS E5 as a boy telegraphist. On 11th March he was killed as a direct result of enemy action. He was 17 years old. His body was not recovered, but his name appears on the Chatham Naval Memorial. At the time of his death, William’s mother was living in Wanstead at 22 Wanstead Park Avenue.
Research by Redbridge Museum
Commonwealth War Graves Commission