The funeral of Captain Sir Tom Moore will be held today, in what the family said would be a “small” service as they asked the public to stay at home.
A quote taken from his family re-iterates the importance of people staying at home tomorrow, even though there may be the urge to attend the church to pay respects.
“Sadly, like so many other families affected by the pandemic, we have no choice but to hold a small family funeral, which will take place this Saturday. Whilst we understand so many people wish to pay their respects to our father, we ask that the public and the press continue to support the NHS by staying at home.”
The NHS hero of the pandemic was in the middle of writing a book and although the family are sad he cannot share it with the world, they’ve decided to release the final chapter as it is so poignant.
In the chapter, Sir Tom said: “Previously, my funeral would have made one little line in the local newspaper and been attended by only a handful of people, but I expect there’ll be a few more now.
“Someone will have to make extra cake and sandwiches, and it won’t be me.
“I want the service to end with My Way by Frank Sinatra, because I always did things my way and especially like the line about having too few regrets to mention.
“It’s odd and rather touching to think that people might weep over my passing – strangers I’ve never even met.
“If I can, I’d like to watch my own funeral from a distance.
“That would be quite the joke as I looked down and chuckled at everyone making a lot of fuss over me.”
“Told you I was old”
Sir Tom, who lived with one of his daughters and her family in Marston Moretaine in Bedfordshire, went on: “Even though I have a space reserved in the village churchyard, I want to be cremated and my ashes taken back to Yorkshire to be with my parents and grandparents in the Moore family plot.
“I wouldn’t mind having a little white headstone somewhere to mark my existence, a bit like the ones they have in military cemeteries.
“Nothing too fancy.”
He said he had also given thought to his epitaph, as several people had asked him.
“When I was younger I enjoyed listening to The Goon Show on the wireless, and one of the comedians who always made me laugh the hardest was Spike Milligan,” he said.
“Like me, he fought in the Second World War, but was wounded in Italy.
“When he died at the age of 83, he wrote his own epitaph, which was engraved in Gaelic on his headstone.
“It reads: ‘I told you I was ill’.
“This always made me laugh, so I think I’d ask for the simple inscription of my name, the dates of my earthly span, and the words: ‘I told you I was old’.”
RIP - A true hero! 💙
You can leave a tribute to Captain Sir Tom online here: https://www.thankyoucaptainsirtom.com