Fundraiser Captain Sir Tom Moore dies aged 100 with COVID-19

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Friday, February 5, 2021

On Tuesday, Captain Sir Tom Moore died after suffering from COVID-19 and pneumonia, in a hospital in Bedford, England. Moore had raised nearly £ 33 million for the National Health Service (NHS) last year by walking 100 laps around his garden by his 100th birthday. He was also a World War II veteran who fought in the Burma campaign.

Moore in around 1940.
Image: British Army.

His daughters announced his death saying "the last year of our father's life was nothing short of remarkable", adding he was "an incredible father and grandfather, and he will stay in our hearts forever".

Moore was born in Keighley, in West Yorkshire, England. He joined the British Army in 1939. After leaving the army, he was an instructor in the Armoured Fighting Vehicle School in Bovington, Dorset. He moved to Bedfordshire in 2007 where his family lived.

In April 2020, he began to walk laps around his garden in an attempt to raise £1000 for the NHS during the COVID-19 pandemic. His campaign became highly popular, resulting in raising millions of pounds, and broke the Guiness world record for the most raised by an individual doing a charity walk. He also released a duet with singer Michael Ball, which reached number one on the UK charts, making Moore the oldest person to make this achievement. On his birthday, April 30, the British Army made him an honorary colonel; and in July, Elizabeth II knighted him for these achievements.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson paid his respects, saying Moore was "a hero in the truest sense of the word", adding "he embodied the triumph of the human spirit". Labour Party leader Keir Starmer said "Britain has lost a hero". A spokesman for Buckingham Palace said the Queen would send a private message of condolence to the family of Moore. Flags at buildings such as 10 Downing Street flew at half mast to pay respect.

Moore had previously suffered from skin cancer on his head, and broke his hip in 2018. He said his hospital treatment inspired him to fundraise for the NHS, describing the staff who treated him as "marvellous". He is survived by two daughters and four grandchildren.