John Leathers was born in Stratford, West Ham, Essex, a son of a coachman, John Leathers, and his wife, Sophia. At the 1901 census his occupation was given as ‘Carman’ – he would have been using a horse-drawn cart for deliveries. He enlisted in the 19th Hussars on 7thMarch 1902, aged 22 years and 1 month. He went to South Africa with regiment in October 1908 and return to England in March 1914 and was transferred to the Reserves. He re-joined the Army, as a Private. when War broke out later in the year and served until at least 1917. He probably went with his regiment to serve in France, but his records from the Great Warperiod do not survive. The 19th (Queen Alexandra’s Own Royal) Hussars – as they were named in 1908 - fought at the 2nd Battle of Ypres (1915), The Somme (1916) and Cambrai (1917).
He married a widow, Marjorie Evelyn May Turner (nee Hawkes), in 1934 and at the time of the 1939 Register they were living in Admington, Stratford-upon-Avon. He was recorded asworking as a groom in a stud and he was also an A.R.P. warden.
After the Second World War the couple moved to Wickhamford, living at ‘Oakenshore’, Manor Road, and they lived there for a number of years. He died there in July 1968, aged 88. His wife later moved the short distance to 44 Willersey Road, Badsey and she died in 1978.