John Barrow Moss was born in Litherland, Lancashire, England, in 1891, the son of John and Mary Eleanor Moss. He lived at the family home, 54, Cambridge Avenue, Great Crosby, Liverpool, Lancashire.
He engaged as a second class waiter in the Stewards' Department on board the
Lusitania at Liverpool on 12th April 1915 and reported for duty three days later at 7 a.m., for the liner’s last ever voyage out of the River Mersey. As a second class waiter, his monthly wage was £4-5s-0d., (£4.25p.).
Having completed the liner’s crossing to New York without mishap, Waiter Moss was on board on the early afternoon of 1st May, three weeks after leaving Liverpool, as the
Lusitania left New York on the start of her return voyage to Liverpool. Then, six days out of that port, on the afternoon of 7th May, she was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine
U-20, within sight of the coast of southern Ireland. At that time, she was only about fourteen hours steaming time away from the safety of her home port. John Moss lost his life as a result of this action. He was aged 23 years.
His body was not recovered and identified afterwards and as a result he is commemorated on the Mercantile Marine Memorial at Tower Hill, London.
His brother, Mersey Z/1477 Able Seaman Percy Barrow Moss of The Drake Battalion, Royal Naval Division, Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve, also lost his life in the Great War, dying of wounds received in action at Arras, northern France, on 11th May 1917. He too, was aged 23 years.
He is buried in Brighton (Bear Road), Borough Cemetery, East Sussex, and both he and his brother John are commemorated on the tombstone which stands on the grave. The inscription, on the two bottom tiers of the white marble base, there, states: -
IN LOVING MEMORY OF
CORP. P.B. MOSS, DRAKE BATT. R.N.D.
WHO DIED OF WOUNDS RECEIVED AT ARRAS
MAY 11. 1917. AGED 23.
ALSO OF J.B. MOSS,
BROTHER OF THE ABOVE
WHO LOST HIS LIFE IN THE LUSITANIA DISASTER
MAY 7. 1915. AGED 23.
Register of Births, Marriages and Deaths, 1911 English Census, 1901 English Census, Paul Cobb, Commonwealth War Graves Commission, Cunard Records, PRO BT 100/345, Gary Wimpress, PRO BT 334.