According to his attestation papers dated January 29, 1916 at Toronto, William James Free, Mimico, York Co, was born on May 26, 1891 at Toronto. He listed his mother Zoe Free, Mimico, York Co. as his next of kin. He was a musician and had 10 years previous military experience with the Grenadiers. He was 24 years and 8 months of age and stood 5 feet 6 inches in height. He had hazel eyes, dark hair and a medium complexion. He had a scar on the inner part of his right thigh. He was a member of the Church of England.
In the 1914 Toronto City directory he is listed as a clerk living with his father James Free of the Mimico Planing Mill, on the east side of Burlington Street, Mimico.
In the 1921 Toronto City directory he is listed as a carpenter living with his father James Free on the east side of Victor Avenue, Mimico.