David Leslie Russell was born on 24 Nov 1890 in Little Amwell, Hertfordshire, the son of William Ernest and Margaret Susan Russell, and baptised at Great Amwell, Herts on 26 January 1891.
On the 1891 Census, the family were living at Hertford Heath, Amwell End, Herts where his father was Bursar at Haileybury College. They appear to have moved on to the Haileybury estate by 1901 where his father remained as Bursar but David was a student at Wick School, Brighton in 1901.
He was educated at Haileybury College 1904-09 and Hertford College, Oxford. On the 1911 Census he was living with his widowed mother and sister at Hailey, Waterden Road, Guildford, Surrey and gave his occupation as Student. Said to be living at Bryn, Digswell, Herts at the time of his death.
His mother later lived at Land End, Sawbridgeworth, Herts