A memorial dedicated to Captain Sir Tom Moore has been vandalised and covered in graffiti in an act that left one resident so upset that he was ‘nearly physically sick‘.
The artwork, a sculpted silhouette outline of the national treasure that helped to raise millions of pounds for NHS charities during the first lockdown, has been besmirched with hastily sprayed white paint spelling out ‘IRA’.
The incident has left locals in complete shock and disbelief that someone would attack a war memorial dedicated to people who had lost their lives fighting for others’ freedoms.
The vandalised artwork is located in Thistley Meadow in Hatton, Derbyshire.
Reacting to the vandalism, Chairman of the Dove Valley Community Project Anthony Ball said told Derbyshire Live: “What I don’t understand is that you’ve got a small memorial remembering those who lost their lives, and a Tommy [from the Royal British Legion].
“Why did they spray Captain Tom? What has he got to do with the IRA?
He added, “I was nearly physically sick when I saw it.”
“Every day I do my walk, I walked around the corner, and I looked at it and was nearly physically sick.
“I touched it with my hand thinking it was something that would just wipe off, and it was spray paint.
“I could almost understand if someone sprayed a war memorial or a soldier, but not Captain Tom walking down the street.
“I had to get a bin bag and put it over Captain Tom, I couldn’t leave him like that.”
The memorial has since been repaired free of charge by Austin Cox, who owns the engineering firm that installed it in the first place.
Captin Tom Moore stole the heart of the nation when he decided to walk 100 laps of his garden in Bedfordshire during the first Covid-19 lockdown in 2020 before reaching his 100th birthday.
His efforts went viral, raising nearly £33m for NHS charities. At the time, much publicity was given to the shortages of PPE equipment in the NHS and a general need to ventilators and other medical equipment.
The cenetenarian passed away from Covid-19 and pneumonia in hospital after contracting the disease following a holiday to Barbados.
Feature image – Twitter (@captaintommoore)