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‘Captain Tom,’ U.K.’s hero Covid fundraiser, dies after testing positive


LONDON — “Captain Tom,” the 100-year-old World War II veteran who raised millions for the U.K.’s National Health Service last year, died on Tuesday, just days after he tested positive for Covid-19, his family confirmed.

In a statement, his daughters Hannah Ingram-Moore and Lucy Teixeira said they were able to spend the last hours of his life with him, reminiscing about their childhood.

“We shared laughter and tears together,” Ingram-Moore said, adding that 2020 was “nothing short of remarkable” for her father.

Moore made international headlines last year when he began a fundraising campaign to support the NHS in April.

He pledged to walk 100 laps around his 50-yard-long garden before his 100th birthday, and initially hoped to raise 1,000 pounds ($1,244).

He ultimately raised 33 million pounds ($41 million) for the country’s health service.

British World War II veteran Captain Tom Moore poses with his walking frame doing a lap of his garden in the village of Marston Moretaine on April 16, 2020.Justin Tallis / AFP – Getty Images file

On Sunday, Ingram-Moore said her father was being treated for pneumonia and had tested positive for the coronavirus last week. He was admitted to the hospital for “additional help with his breathing.”

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British Prime Minister Boris Johnson tweeted about Moore’s passing, saying: “In the face of this country’s deepest post war crisis, he united us all, he cheered us all up, and he embodied the triumph of the human spirit.”

Queen Elizabeth II has also sent a private message of condolence to Moore’s family, according to a tweet from Buckingham Palace.

Moore was knighted by the queen at a ceremony at Windsor Castle in July when she thanked him for the “amazing” amount of money he had raised.

Britain’s Queen Elizabeth talks to Captain Tom Moore and his family after awarding him with the insignia of Knight Bachelor at Windsor Castle, in Windsor, Britain on July 17, 2020.Chris Jackson / Pool via Reuters file

Moore served with the British Army in India, Burma, and World War II as a captain, but was given the honorary title of colonel after his fundraiser.

Britain celebrated Moore’s 100th birthday in April with a flyover of two World War II-era aircrafts.

“As well as uniting the nation and giving hope when it was needed most, he has been our beacon of light every single day,” his namesake foundation, set up in the wake of his fundraising walk, said in a statement.

“Thank you, Captain Sir Tom,” the foundation’s statement said. “Because of you, tomorrow will be a good day for so many more.”



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