Queen Elizabeth II, 94, sent a special message of condolence to Captain Sir Tom Moore’s family after the 100-year-old died from COVID-19 on Tuesday. The war hero was knighted by the Queen last summer after he raised an extraordinary £33million for the NHS by walking 100 laps of his garden ahead of his 100th birthday.
A statement from Buckingham Palace was promptly shared on Twitter following the news of his death.
The message read: “The Queen is sending a private message of condolence to the family of Captain Sir Tom Moore.
“Her Majesty very much enjoyed meeting Captain Sir Tom and his family at Windsor last year.
“Her thoughts and those of the Royal Family are with them.”
READ MORE: Queen remembers ‘inspiration’ Captain Tom Moore in touching letter
According to one royal expert, the Queen’s “sadness” at Captain Tom’s death is likely to be two-fold.
Royal commentator Richard Fitzwilliams told Express.co.uk: “The nation will be saddened by the news of the death of Captain Sir Tom Moore from COVID-19.
“His feat in raising £33 million for NHS Charities Together by walking 100 laps of his garden using his zimmer frame before he turned 100, captured the nation’s heart.”
According to Mr Fitzwilliams, the Queen’s private message to Captain Tom’s family reflects the extent to which he will be mourned by Britons.
The expert added: “The Queen would have taken particular pleasure in knighting him at Windsor last year in July and her private message of condolence on his passing reflected the high regard in which she and the whole nation held him.”
Captain Tom won over the nation’s heart with his lockdown fundraising and enjoyed several huge achievements in its aftermath.
These included being made an honorary colonel and becoming the oldest Briton ever to have a number one single.
Mr Fitzwilliams added: “It has a been a truly remarkable year for him, he was appointed honorary colonel of the Army Foundation College and inspected its junior soldiers in August.
“The single in which he performed reached number one, making him the oldest person to achieve this and he received over 150,000 cards when he marked his centenary.”
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However, Captain Tom’s passing will be a poignant reminder to the Queen that the number of surviving British veterans who served in the Second World War is “dwindling.”
Mr Fitzwilliams said: “The Queen will also have been saddened by the passing of another of the dwindling band of veterans who saw service in the Second World War.”
The Queen and Prince Philip, 99, have been based at Windsor Castle for much of the pandemic and are expected to remain there for the foreseeable future.
They may relocate to Buckingham Palace in the spring ahead of marking the Queen’s official Trooping the Colour birthday celebrations in June.
Tributes poured in for Captain Tom on social media on Tuesday afternoon.
Royal Family members including Prince William, 38, Kate Duchess of Cambridge, 39, Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall all retweeted the Queen’s message.
Princess Beatrice’s husband Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi also spoke out to honour the late war hero.
Edoardo tweeted: “RIP Captain Sir Tom Moore. An inspiration to us all, a true hero,” alongside three photos of Captain Tom.