William was born in 1848 in Boston, Massachusetts and it was his actions during the Korean Expedition that would earn him the Medal of Honor. The citation reads:
On board the U.S.S. Colorado during the capture of the Korean forts, 11 June 1871. Fighting at the side of Lt. McKee, by whom he was especially commended, Troy was badly wounded by the enemy.
William Troy died on the 8th of March, 1907 was originally buried in the Stockton State Hospital Cemetery but is now buried in the San Joaquin Valley National Cemetery in Santa Nella, California: section M-1, grave 53.