Johnson was born the 6 December 1889 in Beverley. He was son of George and Mary Leighton.
Johnson was a Private in the Waggoner's Reserve. The Waggoner's Reserve was headed by Captain Mark Sykes of Sledmere, who recruited a lot of young farm hands during the First World War.
Johnson was one of the first Waggoner's to be killed. He died on 9 November 1914, aged 25 and is buried in Bailleul, France near the Belgium border.
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