Walter was married with several children when, at the age of thirty three, he enlisted in December 1915. At this time he was a Labourer living at Bukkulla, north of Inverell. He joined the First Contingent of the Kurrajongs and left Inverell on 12 January 1916 for the Narrabri and Armidale camps. As a member of the 33rd Battalion, C Company, he sailed from Australia in May 1916 arriving in England about nine weeks later.
His Battalion trained at Salisbury Plain before embarkation for France in November 1916, just in time for the severe freezing winter. Walter became ill in France and it was some weeks before he could return to his unit. During July 1917 he was wounded in action and evacuated to Bethnal Green Military Hospital in England for treatment. As he had a fractured pelvis he was returned to Australia early in 1918 and medically discharged. After the War, Walter lived at Glen Innes until his death in 1950.
Private Walter Briggs is among the Inverell district volunteers whose names are inscribed on the Inverell Honor Roll.