David Beckham has paid a visit to fundraiser Captain Sir Tom Moore – named the first member of the Lionhearts squad of heroes.
The Football Association scheme aims to “pay homage to inspirational” figures.
The former England skipper made a trip to Capt Sir Tom’s Bedfordshire home to hand over a framed football shirt and to say thank you.
Beckham said: “To have Sir Tom as our captain – it doesn’t get any better than that.”
He added: “Everyone was aware at some point of this amazing man but I think he went above and beyond any expectations out there.”
He was named an honorary captain of the Lionhearts, an initiative honouring inspirational people who have gone above and beyond during the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic.
Capt Sir Tom said: “It is very kind of you and I am delighted to receive that honour especially from you. Thank you very much indeed.”
The World War Two veteran, whose original fundraising target was £1,000, raised more than £32m for the NHS by his 100th birthday by walking in his garden in Marston Moretaine, Bedfordshire.
Asked by Beckham about what makes a good leader, Capt Sir Tom said: “I think you have to rather like people and realise there is good in everyone and as a leader you can bring it out of them.
“It is no good you asking me about a leader when you have been sitting there and you know you have been one of the biggest and finest leaders in football we have ever had.”
Capt Sir Tom also recalled from the first day he was conscripted at the age of 20, he had decided “that of all these 500 (new recruits) I am going to be the best”.
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He added: “I worked on that throughout. I did get promotion and eventually I was sent to the officer training unit to become an officer.”
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