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Arise! Sir Tom Moore: Queen Elizabeth knights 100-year-old fundraising captain

Queen honours veteran during investiture at Windsor Castle

Thomson Reuters · Posted: Jul 17, 2020

Retired British Army Captain Tom Moore, seen here in this April 2020 photograph, was knighted by Queen Elizabeth in a special outdoor ceremony Friday at Windsor Castle. (Peter Cziborra/Reuters)

Queen Elizabeth knighted Captain Tom Moore on Friday, recognizing the 100-year-old for lifting the spirits of the Britain during the gloom of the novel coronavirus outbreak by raising millions of pounds for health workers.

The Second World War veteran raised a record sum of 33 million pounds ($56.2 million Cdn) by walking 100 laps of his garden with the aid of a walking frame in April in the run-up to his birthday.

The Queen honoured Moore at an investiture at Windsor Castle, using her knighting sword.

Showing self-depreciating humour, the Yorkshire man became a symbol of British endurance in the face of the adversity of the coronavirus crisis.

Moore, who served in India, Myanmar (then known as Burma) and Sumatra, quipped earlier this year that having a knighthood would be funny because he would be Sir Thomas Moore — a reference to the Tudor statesman Sir Thomas More.

Moore’s endeavour touched the hearts of people in Britain and beyond as they faced the adversity of the coronavirus crisis, prompting Prime Minister Boris Johnson to nominate him for the award.

Moore, who has been made an honorary colonel and an honorary member of the England cricket team, received the ancient accolade at Windsor Castle, where the 94-year-old monarch has been sheltering since March.

Other investitures have been postponed because of the coronavirus and it will be one of the first official duties the Queen has carried out since the coronavirus lockdown.

The ceremony took place in private with Moore accompanied by members of his family.

“I could never have imagined this would happen to me,” Moore said in a message posted on Twitter prior to the ceremony.

“It is such a huge honour and I am very much looking forward to meeting Her Majesty The Queen. It is going to be the most special of days for me.”

The palace said the Queen would use a sword that belonged to her father, George VI, for the ceremony.

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