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Queen leads tributes to Captain Tom

Sir Captain Tom Moore
Sir Captain Tom Moore Image credit: thirdsector.co.uk

Tributes have been pouring in after Captain Sir Tom Moore passed away today of pneumonia and COVID-19.

The war veteran raised around £33m for NHS charities across the country by walking a hundred laps of his garden to help the health service cope amidst the pandemic.

He was taken to Bedford Hospital on Sunday with breathing difficulties.

Leading tributes the Queen said the Captain was “the inspiration he provided for the whole nation and others across the world".

His family were allowed to share Moore’s final hours by his bedside after they were told he was unable to have the coronavirus vaccine because he was suffering from pneumonia.

Sir Tom’s daughters Hannah Ingram-Moore and Lucy Teixeira announced his death saying their father’s life had been “nothing short of remarkable”.

Moore met the Queen in July when he received a knighthood at Windsor Castle.

A spokesperson for Buckingham Palace said: "Her Majesty very much enjoyed meeting Capt Sir Tom and his family at Windsor last year. Her thoughts, and those of the royal family, are with them, recognising the inspiration he provided for the whole nation and others across the world."

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: "Captain Sir Tom Moore was a hero in the truest sense of the word. In the dark days of the Second World War he fought for freedom and 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.

"He became not just a national inspiration but a beacon of hope for the world. Our thoughts are with his daughter Hannah and all his family.”

Over on social media leader of the Labour Party Sir Keir Starmer tweeted: “This is incredibly sad news. Captain Tom Moore put others first at a time of national crisis and was a beacon of hope for millions. Britain has lost a hero."

In a statement his daughters said: "It is with great sadness that we announce the death of our dear father.

"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 daughters went on to thank the NHS staff who looked after their father who were "unfalteringly professional, kind and compassionate and have given us many more years with him than we ever would have imagined".

Singer Michael Ball, who performed with Sir Tom with the number-one hit You’ll Never Walk Alone, paid tribute tweeting "A wonderful life so well lived and a hero and fighter to the very end. So very sad".

Captain Sir Tom raised £32,794,701 from more than 1.5 million supporters for the NHS.