The kindness of strangers...5,000 cards cheer up lonely Jack, 101
A WAR hero who couldn’t see his family on his 101st birthday yesterday woke up to find 5,000 cards from well-wishers around the world.
RAF veteran Jack Annall was also sent dozens of cakes and gifts, had a visit from the mayor and was serenaded by a brass band playing happy birthday to mark his special day.
The kindness of strangers brought tears to Jack’s eyes – but made him smile too. He said: “Today has been absolutely incredible. I was so overwhelmed these people thought of me.
“I want to thank everyone across the world and the country for making the day so special. It will take me 101 years to read all of the cards!”
Widower Jack knew he wouldn’t get a visit from daughter Mary as she lives in Australia and cannot travel because of the pandemic. But his care home manager Vicky Gudgin saw he was “a little bit down” and was determined to make him feel special.
She asked other homes to send cards and hoped for 101.
But when her request was shared on social media, thousands arrived to fill the residents’ lounge at Sandholme Fold, Halifax,West Yorkshire.
Jack, who served as a joiner in World War Two, also had a visit from an RAF representative.
Vicky said: “Jack is a wonderful person. We’ve had businesses and people offering to send presents and arrange entertainment. We’ve had singers offering to come and perform.
“But Jack likes to be low-key so we have tried to keep it that way – as best we can.”