He was to lose his life in the Battle of Morval, during the later stages of the Somme offensive.
On the 24th September 1916 the Battalion formed up in the assembly trenches in front of the village of Ginchy. Regimental records show the trenches were so narrow that the men could not sit or lie down in them and had to remain shoulder to shoulder until the following day when, at 12.35, they attacked Ginchy.
The assault was held up by uncut wire and four officers went forward to try and cut it by hand. The battalion, led by NCOs, then charged through the gap to take the objective but the cost was high with William being amongst the wounded. He died the next day as a result of his injuries and is buried in the St. Sever Cemetery, Rouen, Seine-Maritime, France.