Captain Sir Tom Moore, who has died aged 100, was a Second World War veteran who became Britain’s national hero and mascot in the early months of the coronavirus pandemic, raising millions of pounds for charity on the eve of his 100th birthday and providing a baffled and dismayed nation with a badly needed measure of inspiration and comfort.
In a statement, Capt Sir Tom’s daughters Mrs Ingram-Moore and Lucy Teixeira said: “It is with great sadness that we announce the death of our dear father, Captain Sir Tom Moore.
“We are so grateful that we were with him during the last hours of his life; Hannah, Benjie and Georgia by his bedside and Lucy on FaceTime.
“We spent hours chatting to him, reminiscing about our childhood and our wonderful mother. We shared laughter and tears together.
“The last year of our father’s life was nothing short of remarkable. He was rejuvenated and experienced things he’d only ever dreamed of.
“Whilst he’d been in so many hearts for just a short time, he was an incredible father and grandfather, and he will stay alive in our hearts forever.”
When the UK entered lockdown at the end of March 2020, Moore had come no closer to fame than appearing as a contestant on the television game show Blankety Blank in 1983. Yet within a few weeks he was known to the whole country and much of the rest of the world as “Captain Tom”, gaining affection and respect for his optimism and sense of fun as much as his charitable endeavours.
Moore, who lived with his daughter and her family in the village of Marston Moretaine near Milton Keynes, embarked on the path to celebrity in early April, when he came up with the idea of raising money for NHS charities – and marking his approaching centenary – by walking 100 laps of his garden over the course of 10 days. He had initially joked that if he could do 100 laps he might raise a few pounds to give to the NHS, he in reality kept walking once the news of his attempt went viral his charitable cause touched millions and he raised £32 million pounds for the NHS. His determination to raise money for the NHS struck a chord worldwide and following a Gov e-Petition and Change campaign Captain Sir Tom Moore’s knighthood was fast-tracked by the PM and personally approved by the Queen. He was Knighted by the Queen for his service to charity in July 2020
Tributes have been flooding into his family and friends, messages from the Queen, the UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson; Chancellor Rishi Sunak amongst the very first to pay their respects.
Below is Captain Thomas Moore’s Story.