Captain Tom Moore, the war veteran who has raised nearly £30 million for the NHS by walking laps of his garden in Bedfordshire, has been made an honorary colonel to celebrate his 100th birthday.
We’re all desperate for some good news at the moment, and no story has quite captured our imagination like that of Captain Tom Moore’s fundraising adventure.
Despite setting out to raise £1,000 for the NHS by walking laps of his garden, Captain Moore has managed to raise over £30 million so far (he initially aimed to walk 100 laps, but has since extended his challenge to 200).
Since then, Captain Moore has touched the hearts of people all over the world. And today (30 April), on his 100th birthday, the veteran has been made an honorary colonel to celebrate.
Speaking to the BBC, the defence secretary Ben Wallace called Captain Moore “simply inspirational” and said he was delighted to see him presented with his new title.
“He not only embodies the spirit of our incredible veteran community, but the resolve of this nation,” he explained.
Of course, being presented with his shiny new colonel title isn’t the only way Captain Moore will be celebrating his 100th birthday.
Alongside his personalised card from the Queen, he’s received about 140,000 birthday cards. In fact, there were so many that volunteers has to be called in to open the cards, which are now on display at Bedford School.
Additionally, Captain Moore will be made an honorary England cricketer, presented with a replacement Second World War Defence Medal (ahead of next week’s VE Day celebrations), have a special post box unveiled in his honour and have his birthday marked with an RAF flypast.
And that’s not forgetting all the surprises Captain Moore has had over the last couple of weeks, such as having two trains named after him and becoming the oldest person to achieve a number one single in the UK.
Posting on Twitter to mark the occasion, Captain Moore said it was “extraordinary” to turn 100 with so many well-wishers behind him.
“It is quite extraordinary that I am turning 100,” he wrote. “It is even more extraordinary that I am doing so with so many well-wishers and I am in awe at the response my walking has had.
“To everyone who has donated, sent birthday cards and messages, sincerely thank you. Please stay home, stay safe. Tomorrow Will Be A Good Day.”
If one thing’s for sure, Captain (or Colonel, as we may now call him) Moore has given us all something to celebrate during this difficult time.