Captain Sir Tom Moore, the second world war veteran who raised almost £39m for NHS charities during the first coronavirus lockdown in spring 2020, has died aged 100 after testing positive for coronavirus.
His daughters, Hannah and Lucy, confirmed Moore’s death in a statement.
They 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.
“The care our father received from the NHS and carers over the last few weeks and years of his life has been extraordinary. They have been unfalteringly professional, kind and compassionate and have given us many more years with him than we ever would have imagined.”
Moore was admitted to Bedford hospital on Sunday after being treated for pneumonia for some time and testing positive for Covid-19 last week.
In a statement posted on the veteran’s Twitter page that same day, his family said he had been treated at home until Sunday when he needed additional help with his breathing.
Hannah Ingram-Moore said her father had not needed to be taken to an intensive care unit.
A spokesperson for Moore’s family told the BBC at the time that he had not received a Covid-19 vaccine because of the medication he had been taking for pneumonia.
Moore’s fundraising efforts during the first national lockdown in April last year raised £38.9m for NHS charities after his pledge to walk 100 laps of his garden before his 100th birthday captured the imagination of fans from around the world.
Boris Johnson said Moore’s “heroic efforts have lifted the spirits of the entire nation”, while the Duke of Cambridge praised him as a “one-man fundraising machine”.
The indomitable spirit he embodied inspired the nation, and he went on to break two Guinness World Records – becoming the oldest person to get a No 1 single in the UK charts and raising the most money for doing a solo charity walk.
Born in Keighley, West Yorkshire, in April 1920, Moore completed an apprenticeship as a civil engineer after finishing school and then joined the army. In 1940, he was selected for officer training and rose to the rank of captain, later being posted to the ninth battalion of the Duke of Wellington’s Regiment in India.
He served and fought in the Arakan in western Burma, since renamed Rakhine State, and went with his regiment to Sumatra after the Japanese surrender.
After the war, he returned to the UK and worked as an instructor at the Armoured Fighting Vehicle School in Bovington, Dorset. He lived in Kent for many years before moving to Bedfordshire in 2007 to be with his family.