Veteran raises millions for the NHS

Aye-aye, captain! Tom is in the running to be British ‘Sports Personality of the Year’. © Getty

99-year-old World War Two veteran, Captain Tom Moore, has raised over £20 million for the NHS by walking 100 times around his back garden. Should we all be following his example?

What’s happening

On the morning of 16 April, Tom set off on the final four laps of his garden. His plan was to walk around it 100 times before his 100th birthday. When he started out a week before, he had hoped to raise £1,000 for the NHS. As he crossed the finish line, he had already raised more than £12 million.

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Tom Moore was born in 1920 and trained as a civil engineer before enlisting in the Army for World War Two. Rising to captain, he served in India and Myanmar. A lifelong optimist, he said his motto has always been:

“Tomorrow will be a good day.”

Tom was greeted by a special guard of honour from 1st Battalion, Yorkshire Regiment, that stood to attention as he made the last few steps. Thousands of people have been inspired by Captain Tom’s positivity and the donations are still pouring in. There is now a petition suggesting Captain Moore should receive a knighthood, while Prime Minister Boris Johnson called him, “heroic”. Tom remained humble, saying he didn’t expect anything in return for his achievement.

Should we all follow Tom’s example?

Some say…

This isn’t something everybody should do. It’s the government’s job to pay for public services such as the NHS. If we all followed Tom’s example, some good causes could be overlooked. A fundraiser also needs focus: Tom was successful because he stood out. If everyone tried to raise money in the same way, our actions would lack impact.

Others think…

Of course! Tom’s actions are about more than just money. He represents hope in a difficult time. He has shown that an individual can make a difference when they persevere. More than anything else, we should admire Tom for his modesty. He has raised a huge amount of money, wishing for nothing in return. This is an example everyone should follow.

You Decide

  1. Should Captain Tom get a knighthood?


  1. Lots of people are sending cards to Captain Tom for when he turns 100. Write a letter, email, or message to someone you haven’t spoken to since the lockdown to stay in touch.

Some People Say...

“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – you’re right.”

Henry Ford (1863-1947), inventor of the first mass-produced car

What do you think?

Word Watch

Formerly known as Burma, an Asian nation bordering India, Bangladesh, China, Laos, and Thailand.
1st Battalion, Yorkshire Regiment
The Yorkshire Regiment is an infantry regiment of the British Army.
A title that is given to a man by a British king or queen for his achievements or his service to his country.
Having a modest opinion of oneself.


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