Older people are not a passive vulnerable group! They are a vital part of our society.
Two inspirational war veterans are winning the fight against Covid-19.
In the United Kingdom a 99-year-old veteran Captain Tom Moore is the hero Britain needs right now. He has raised over £22 million for Britain’s health-care system by walking his garden. This figure is still rising.
Captain Tom Moore set up a fundraising page and decided to walk the 82-foot length of his garden back and forth 100 times, using his walker for support.
He split the journey into chunks of 10 laps with the idea of completing them before his 100th birthday on April 30.
Initially, he wanted to raise £1,000. But to his surprise his donations had leaped into millions and is still growing. He finished his final lap on Thursday which was two weeks ahead of schedule. This was live streamed by the BBC and soldiers from the Yorkshire Regiment formed a guard of honour and saluted him. Strained health-care workers thanked him across the country.
The high volume of support crashed his JustGving Page
Moore, who served in India during World War II, has drawn national and international acclaim while documenting his walking adventure on social media. As interest in the veteran grew and donations climbed, his JustGiving page crashed continuously due to the sheer volume of people flocking to support him as he carried out his pledge.
Captain Moore has been embraced across the country as a national treasure who is bringing people together during a period of tragedy and widespread uncertainty.
He has captured the heart of a nation and demonstrated a lifetime of bravery and compassion.
In Ireland, Tom Gunn is an 82-year-old veteran. He served in the Congo with the Irish Army & survived the Siege of Jadotville. The Mullingar man was among those awarded medals by the State for their participation during the Congo Crisis in September 1961.
Now he’s survived Covid-19. Tom spent two weeks in hospital but he’s back home with his family.
Tom said he wouldn’t have survived the virus if it wasn’t for the nursing staff, doctors and medical staff who helped him throughout his time in hospital.
He also developed a few techniques to help him get through the experience.
Stand up and Fight against Covid-19
In an interview Tom explained: “I did draw on my army experience in the Congo: you must stand up now and fight, not lie down. You must do all the things that the nurses and staff tell you to do.
“I developed my own strategy as regards breathing – I used to grab the back of the bed, fill my lungs with air ten times, breathe in – even though it hurt an awful lot. Then relax and do that about once an hour. It was very strenuous breathing to release that congestion on the lungs.
“With the help of the nurses, I think that pulled me through – plus the fact I
had a good positive outlook on life and death.”
Tom said he was scared, and that this was a “different battle” to the one he fought in Jadotville.
He feared that he would “just fade away in some bed” – suggesting that would not be “a very dignified way for a soldier to go”.
Tom’s advice for anyone testing positive for Covid-19
Tom is now encouraging anyone who tests positive for the virus here to keep ‘their Irish spirit to the fore.
He said: “Where there’s life, there’s hope.
“We Irish went through famines, pestilence, wars… and we always came out on top. I think we’re going to win this one as well. There will be casualties… but we will come through.
Our War Veterans are leading the way during this pandemic, winning the fight against Covid-19 with their resilience and bravery.
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