Alfred George Drake VC
Name: Alfred George Drake
Conflict: First World War
Gazetted: January 22, 1916
Place/date of birth: Stepney, London/December 10, 1893
Rank when awarded VC (and later highest rank): Corporal
Date of bravery: November 23, 1915
London Gazette citation:
No. S/107 Corporal Alfred Drake, 8th Battalion, The Rifle Brigade (Prince Consort’s Own).
For most conspicuous bravery on the night of 23rd November, 1915, near La Brique, France.
He was one of a patrol of four which was reconnoitring towards the German lines. The patrol was discovered when close to the enemy, who opened heavy fire with rifles and a machine gun, wounding the Officer and one man. The latter was carried back by the last remaining man. Corporal Drake remained with his Officer and was last seen kneeling beside him and bandaging his wounds regardless of the enemy’s fire.
Later, a rescue party crawling near the German lines found the Officer and Corporal, the former unconscious but alive and bandaged, Corporal Drake beside him dead and riddled with bullets. He had given his own life and saved his Officer.
Click here to see full Gazette entry.
Other decorations: N/A
Place/date of death: La Brique, Belgium/November 23, 1915
Grave/memorials: La Brique Military Cemetery, Belgium; The Rifle Brigade Memorial, Winchester Cathedral, Hampshire; Ben Johnson LCC School, London
Origin of VC to the Lord Ashcroft collection: Purchased privately, 2001
Current location of VC: Displayed on rotation at The Lord Ashcroft Gallery: Extraordinary Heroes exhibition, Imperial War Museum