101-year-old D-Day veteran urges people to get Covid-19 vaccine

D-Day veteran Jack Jenner, 101, from Thorpe St Andrew, who is going to receive the coronavirus vaccine in January 2021. 

D-Day veteran Jack Jenner, 101, from Thorpe St Andrew, pictured in 2017, who is going to receive the coronavirus vaccine in January 2021. - Credit: Linda Jenner

A 101-year-old D-Day veteran is urging people to get the coronavirus vaccine.

Jack Jenner, from Thorpe St Andrew, will be receiving the injection at Bowthorpe Medical Practice on January 9.

The former Royal Engineer, who helped build vital bridges for thousands of soldiers and weapons from Normandy to Germany from 1942-46 during the Second World War, said: "My feeling is the vaccine is perfectly safe, as long as the needle is sharp.

"There is no harm in getting it. I would advise anyone to go and get it if asked."

Mr Jenner, who was born in Lowestoft to a fishing family and has four grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren, loves seeing his many family members.

But due to the coronavirus pandemic, the widowed war veteran who can care for himself at home, has only been able to see one of his two surviving sons, Michael Jenner, 78, from Stalham, and his wife within his support bubble.

The 101-year-old said: "It has been a difficult year. I will be glad when it is over. It has been frustrating."

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His son said: "We would rather my father die peacefully in his own bed rather than gasping for breath on a covid ward at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital where no-one can see him. The vaccine gives us peace of mind."

Jack Jenner, 101, from Thorpe St Andrew, who is a D-Day veteran and will be receiving the coronavirus vaccine. 

Jack Jenner, 101, from Thorpe St Andrew, who is a D-Day veteran and will be receiving the coronavirus vaccine. - Credit: Linda Jenner

He added that it was important that older people were vaccinated as soon as possible so they did not increase pressure on intensive care wards of hospitals by catching the virus.

But the 78-year-od did understand the argument that it was also important to vaccinate medical professionals.

He described his father as "incredible" for his age as well as being determined and strongly opinionated and put his good health down to being outside a lot during his working life.

Jack, with his late wife Elsie Jenner, on their wedding day in 1939.

Jack, with his late wife Elsie Jenner, on their wedding day in 1939. - Credit: Supplied by Linda Jenner

Mr Jenner moved to Town House on Yarmouth Road with his father, five siblings, uncle and seven cousins, after his grandfather gave up fishing at the end of the First World War to set up a boat hire business on the Broads in 1926.

A lover of boats, Mr Jenner ran Maiden Craft boat hire business with his brother on Yarmouth Road from 1965 until 1985 when he retired.

He also received the Legion of Honour, France's highest order of merit for military achievements, last year for his D-Day efforts.

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