Walter Wilson was born on 4 April 1892 at St Pancras, London, the son of Arthur Wilson, a boot caster, and his wife Frances (née Rossiter). He had an older sister, and his father died in 1899.
He joined the Royal Navy at HMS GANGES at Shotley on 11 May 1907 as a Boy 2nd Class, claiming a date of birth of 4 April 1891, although actually a year younger. He served in various ships before joining the cruiser HMS DIDO where he was rated Ordinary Signalman on his purported 18th birthday. At the start of 1911 he joined her sister ship HMS JUNO and later that year he was rated Signalman, before being drafted to the destroyer depot ship HMS BLENHEIM in the Mediterranean. After a subsequent draft to the destroyer depot ship HMS HECLA, he was then sent to the submarine depot ship HMS BONAVENTURE in June 1913. He was then drafted to HMS CORMORANT, the Gibraltar receiving ship, ‘for Subs B6, 7 & 8’, and then to HMS ADAMANT, which took over the role of dedicated submarine depot ship in the Mediterranean in April 1915. It seems likely that he served in B7 throughout this period.
Walter Wilson died from dysentery on 19 August 1915, and is buried at the Malta (Capuccini) Naval Cemetery.