When John Campbell died last week at the age 92, it looked as if only his carers and a handful of friends would be at his funeral.
But when the British Legion looked into his past, they discovered he'd won four medals fighting in Burma, and decided he deserved a fitting send off.
He told his carers at Fontburn Court in North Tyneside of the fierce battles he had fought in the jungles.
He described to one carer that as he advanced towards an enemy position, a hand-grenade was thrown near his face, blinding him in one eye.
But he kept advancing. Some records online suggest he was awarded the Military Cross.
The British Legion's appeal has got quite a response, with one man in Tynemouth promoting their cause through social media.
– Ray McGough, online organiser
The man was born in Tynemouth, so he's one of us.
And I think it just shows, how humble and generous Geordies can be, I don't know any of these people, but for them all just to say yes.
A funeral director, florist and bugler have volunteered to help prepare for the funeral tomorrow.
– Pam Rostron, owner of Scentiments florists
The reason that I've been able to make the choices I've made is because of people like him.
And I just thought it would be a fitting tribute to Mr Campbell, to in some small way, just a mark of respect
The service will be held tomorrow (Thursday April 3) at 2.15pm at Whitley Bay crematorium.