Private Alfred Rose was born in the Parish of Ladywood, Birmingham in 1870 and enlisted in the Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry at Worcester in January 1889, aged 18 years. Arriving in India in October 1890, he joined the 1st Battalion at Madras but was posted to Mandalay early in the following year and went on to become one of just six men of the D.C.L.I. to qualify for the India General Service Medal with the 'Kachin Hills 1892-93' clasp. Rose returned to the U.K. in January 1897 and was placed on the Army Reserve.
Recalled to the Colours on the advent of hostilities in South Africa, he joined the 2nd Battalion of his old Regiment at Cape Town in November 1899. As part of General Colvile's 9th Division, the Battalion went on to see action at Paardeberg and Driefontein, in addition to witnessing the fall of Johannesburg. At the former engagement, Rose and his comrades took part in a bayonet charge at the end of the day, racing 'pell mell through the firing line 300 yards through a terrific hail of bullets, pom-pom shells and shrapnel, men falling at every yard'.
Finally discharged from the Army Reserve in April 1907, Rose worked as an Engineer's Timekeeper and died in June 1948, aged 77 years.