According to his attestation papers dated January 29, 1916 at Toronto, Matthew Herbert Giles, Mimico, was born on October 7, 1896 in Mimico, Ontario. He listed his sister Lucy Devens, 164 Fairview Avenue, Toronto, as his next of kin. He was a timekeeper and had no previous military experience. He was 19 years and 4 months of age and stood 5 feet 6 1/2 inches tall. He had grey eyes and fair hair and complexion. He was a member of the Church of England.
According to the 1914 Toronto City directory he was an electrician living in the home of Arthur Littleton on the north side of Mimico Avenue, Mimico.
In the 1921 Toronto City directory he was living in the home of Bernard J. Devins on the north side of Stanley Avenue.