According to his first set of attestation papers dated November 6, 1916, Ralph Trafford was born in Oxford, England on November 2, 1898. He listed his mother Eliza Trafford, Portland Street, Mimico as his next of kin. He was a machinist. He indicated that he had no previous military experience. He was 18 years old and 5 feet 1 inches tall. He had grey blue eyes, brown hair and a medium complexion. He had a mole under his right arm; a scar on the corner of his left eye; and a scar on the back of his left index finger. It appears that he was discharged after four and a half months due to being underweight.
He then enlisted again. According to his second set of attestation papers dated September 14, 1917, Ralph Trafford was born in New Martin, Oxfordshire, England on November 2, 1898. He listed his mother Elizabeth Trafford, Portland Street, Mimico as his next of kin. He was a labourer and indicated that he had had four and a half months of previous military experience with the 208th Battalion. He had been previously discharged from the military for being underweight. He was 18 years and 10 months of age and was 5 feet 2 1/2 inches tall. He had grey eyes, brown hair and a fair complexion. He had a scar on the first finger of his left hand. A scar on the side of his right eye, and mole on the right side of his back. He was a member of the Church of England.
His father Walter and his brother Ralph also enlisted.
In the 1921 Toronto City directory he is listed as a steamfitter living on the west side of Milton Street, Mimico.