John was the only son of Francis and Isabella Lorenz who lived at Howell NSW where, in 1905, his mother had a shop. John was a twenty-four-year-old Butcher when he enlisted in March 1915 at Liverpool NSW. His parents were deceased, and he listed his elder sister Florence as next of kin.
John joined the 19th Battalion, C Company which sailed from Australia for Egypt on HMAT Ceramic in June 1915. He served at Gallipoli before being sent to France in March 1916. He died of wounds received in battle in February 1917 and has no known grave. His name is recorded on the Australian National Memorial at Villers-Bretonneux, France. His personal effects were returned to his elder sister and included his wallet, photos, diary, cigarette case, pen and watch.
John’s name is on the Tingha Memorial and the Howell Public School Roll of Honour.