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Captain Sir Tom Moore funeral takes place as nation pays tribute

Jimmy Nsubuga
·5-min read
BEDFORD, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 27: (No reuse after 11.59pm on March 6th 2021 without written consent from gemma@captaintom.org.) The coffin of Captain Sir Tom Moore is carried by members of the Armed Forces during his funeral at Bedford Crematorium on February 27, 2021 in Bedford, England. WWII veteran, Sir Tom raised nearly £33 million for NHS charities ahead of his 100th birthday last year by walking laps of his garden in Marston Moretaine, Bedfordshire. He died on the 2nd of February after testing positive for COVID-19. (Photo by Joe Giddens - Pool/Getty Images)
The coffin of Captain Sir Tom Moore is carried by members of the Armed Forces. (Getty)

Captain Sir Tom Moore has been laid to rest in a moving funeral as the nation paid its respects to the army veteran.

Sir Tom’s coffin, draped in a Union flag, was carried to the crematorium on Saturday by soldiers from the Yorkshire Regiment while a Second World War-era C-47 Dakota performed a flypast.

This was followed by a firing party of 14 each firing three rounds in unison.

A small service was then held with eight members of his immediate family – his two daughters, Hannah Ingram-Moore and Lucy Teixeira, his four grandchildren and his sons-in-law.

Sir Tom captured the nation’s hearts with his fundraising efforts during the first coronavirus lockdown when he walked 100 laps of his Bedfordshire garden before his 100th birthday, raising more than £32 million for the NHS.

He died at Bedford Hospital on 2 February after testing positive for COVID-19.

Watch: Captain Tom's hearse arrives at funeral

File photo dated 16/04/2020 of the then 99-year-old war veteran Captain Tom Moore at his home in Marston Moretaine, Bedfordshire, after he achieved his goal of 100 laps of his garden. Captain Sir Tom Moore has died at the age of 100 after testing positive for Covid-19, his daughters Hannah and Lucy said in a statement. Issue date: Tuesday February 2, 2021.
The then 99-year-old war veteran Captain Tom Moore at his home in Bedfordshire. (Getty)

The service opened with the charity single Sir Tom recorded with Michael Ball and the NHS Voices of Care Choir, You’ll Never Walk Alone, which reached number one in the UK singles charts in April last year.

His daughter Ms Teixeira, 52, then paid tribute to Sir Tom.

She said: “Daddy, you always told us ‘best foot forward’ and true to your word that’s what you did last year, raising a fortune for the NHS and walking your way into the nation’s hearts.”

Ms Teixeira added: “Daddy, I am so proud of you, what you achieved your whole live and especially in the last year.

“You may be gone but your message and your spirit lives on.”

BEDFORD, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 27: A vintage C-47 Dakota performs a flypast over Bedford crematorium as a funeral service for Sir Tom Moore takes place on February 27, 2021 in Bedford, England. WWII veteran, Sir Tom raised nearly £33 million for NHS charities ahead of his 100th birthday last year by walking laps of his garden in Marston Moretaine, Bedfordshire. He died on the 2nd of February after testing positive for COVID-19. (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)
A vintage C-47 Dakota performs a flypast over Bedford crematorium. (Getty)
BEDFORD, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 27: The funeral procession for Sir Tom Moore passes through the village of Marston Moretaine on the way to Bedford Crematorium ahead of a private ceremony on February 27, 2021 in Bedford, England. WWII veteran, Sir Tom raised nearly £33 million for NHS charities ahead of his 100th birthday last year by walking laps of his garden in Marston Moretaine, Bedfordshire. He died on the 2nd of February after testing positive for COVID-19. (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)
The funeral procession for Sir Tom Moore passes through the village of Marston Moretaine. (Getty)
File photo dated 16/04/2020 of the then 99-year-old war veteran Captain Tom Moore, with (left to right) grandson Benji, daughter Hannah Ingram-Moore and granddaughter Georgia, at his home in Marston Moretaine, Bedfordshire, after he achieved his goal of 100 laps of his garden. Captain Sir Tom Moore has died at the age of 100 after testing positive for Covid-19, his daughters Hannah and Lucy said in a statement. Issue date: Tuesday February 2, 2021.
Captain Tom Moore, with (left to right) grandson Benji, daughter Hannah Ingram-Moore and granddaughter Georgia. (Getty)
A wreath of 200 white roses laid by David Pearson, Deputy Lieutenant for West Yorkshire, at the Sir Tom Moore memorial plaque in Keighley, West Yorkshire, on the day of Captain Sir Tom Moore's funeral. Picture date: Saturday February 27, 2021. (Photo by Danny Lawson/PA Images via Getty Images)
A wreath of 200 white roses. (Getty)
A memorial plaque in Keighley, West Yorkshire, on the day of Captain Sir Tom Moore's funeral. Picture date: Saturday February 27, 2021. (Photo by Danny Lawson/PA Images via Getty Images)
A memorial plaque in Keighley, West Yorkshire. (Getty)

Ms Ingram-Moore said in her eulogy: “We had the happiness of a stable family life, peppered with the excitement of intrepid camping trips across Europe which gave our young minds a window on the world that you said was our oyster to open.”

She described her father moving in with them after her mother’s death as “the most amazing, multi-generational life journey, thriving on the wealth of knowledge and the knowledge we, in turn, gave to you”.

Ms Ingram-Moore added: “Your relationship with (your grandchildren) was a constant remember of how lucky we were to have you as a father and of that special bond we have.”

Captain Sir Tom Moore’s grandson Benjie said: “If there is a lesson I have learned from living with you the last 13 years, it’s the power of positivity and kindness, I truly do not believe I would be the person I am today without your sound guidance.

“Our chats mid-afternoon that were only supposed to last a few minutes quickly turned into hour-long conversations, quickly delving into so many thought-provoking avenues. These are memories I will never forget and ones I am incredibly grateful to have."

Sir Tom asked that his epitaph reads: “I told you I was old”, in reference to comedian Spike Milligan’s famous epitaph: “I told you I was ill.”

Once Covid-19 restrictions permit, the family will inter Sir Tom’s ashes in Yorkshire, with his parents and grandparents in the Moore family plot.

Members of the public were asked to stay at home and not attend the funeral, but many thousands of people have signed an online book of condolence instead.

A wreath remembering Captain Sir Tom has been laid on behalf of the Queen in his home town in Yorkshire.

Flags are flying at half-mast and bells tolling across Bradford district, including in Keighley, on Saturday.

Bradford City Hall clock tower was due to play Abide With Me and You’ll Never Walk Alone as a tribute to Sir Tom.

The bells of Bradford Cathedral will also toll 100 times from 6pm, once for each day of his life.

Council buildings including City Hall in the centre of Bradford also will be lit up in red, white and blue in the evening and overnight as a mark of respect.

Watch: UK bids farewell to Captain Sir Tom Moore

BEDFORD, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 27: (No reuse after 11.59pm on March 6th 2021 without written consent from gemma@captaintom.org.) The family of Captain Sir Tom Moore (left to right) son-in-law Colin Ingram, granddaughter Georgia, grandson Benjie and daughter Hannah Ingram-Moore arrive for his funeral at Bedford Crematorium on February 27, 2021 in Bedford, England. WWII veteran, Sir Tom raised nearly £33 million for NHS charities ahead of his 100th birthday last year by walking laps of his garden in Marston Moretaine, Bedfordshire. He died on the 2nd of February after testing positive for COVID-19. (Photo by Joe Giddens - Pool/Getty Images)
The family of Captain Sir Tom Moore arrive for his funeral. (Getty)
BEDFORD, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 27: (EDITOR'S NOTE: No reuse after 11.59pm on March 6th 2021 without written consent from gemma@captaintom.org.) Members of the Armed Forces stand in formation during a private funeral service for Captain Sir Tom Moore at Bedford Crematorium on February 27, 2021 in Bedford, England. WWII veteran, Sir Tom raised nearly £33 million for NHS charities ahead of his 100th birthday last year by walking laps of his garden in Marston Moretaine, Bedfordshire. He died on the 2nd of February after testing positive for COVID-19. (Photo by Joe Giddens - Pool/Getty Images)
Members of the Armed Forces stand in formation. (Getty)
David Pearson, Deputy Lieutenant for West Yorkshire lays a wreath of 200 white roses at the Sir Tom Moore memorial plaque in Keighley, West Yorkshire, on the day of Captain Sir Tom Moore's funeral. Picture date: Saturday February 27, 2021. (Photo by Danny Lawson/PA Images via Getty Images)
David Pearson, Deputy Lieutenant for West Yorkshire lays a wreath. (Getty)
BEDFORD, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 27: The funeral procession for Sir Tom Moore passes through Bedford on the way to Bedford Crematorium ahead of a private ceremony on February 27, 2021 in Bedford, England. WWII veteran, Sir Tom raised nearly £33 million for NHS charities ahead of his 100th birthday last year by walking laps of his garden in Marston Moretaine, Bedfordshire. He died on the 2nd of February after testing positive for COVID-19. (Photo by Hollie Adams/Getty Images)
The funeral procession for Sir Tom Moore passes through Bedford. (Getty)

In acknowledgement of his fundraising, Sir Tom was knighted by the Queen during a unique open-air ceremony at Windsor Castle in summer 2020.

Last year, Sir Tom’s 100th birthday celebrations included a Spitfire flypast, and he was photographed punching the air as it went past.

The fundraiser served with the Duke of Wellington’s Regiment during the Second World War.

The regiment later merged with two others from Yorkshire, becoming the Yorkshire Regiment, and Sir Tom was made an honorary colonel last August.

A firing party of 14 will each fired three rounds in unison, and a bugler sounded The Last Post at the end of the private service.

In total six representatives from the Army Foundation College in Harrogate, where Sir Tom was made an honorary colonel, formed a ceremonial guard.