Sunday, 30 October 2011

Linked to Direcleit

Many a man with roots in the Outer Hebrides lost his life in the service of King and Country during both World Wars, without the link to the islands being acknowledged. One such example is Donald Mackillop Ridgway. A tribute in the Stornoway Gazette of 11 August 1944 serves to highlight the Harris connection.

Mr Norman Mackillop, Dereaclate, has received news that his nephew, Lieutenant Donald Mackillop, Ridgway, died on Sunday 30th July in a military hospital in England after a short illness. Lieut Ridgway was the eldest son of Mr Alfred Rdigway, Brumley, Scanthorpe. His mother before her marriage was Miss Ann Mackillop, a daughter of the late Donald Mackillop, Dereclete. The deceased, who paid many visits to Harris was a young man of much promise. He was a qualified chemist and was settled in practice for two years before joining the army. He was 24 years at his death which is deeply regretted by many in Harris. Sympathy is felt for the parents and other relatives.

Without the tribute in the Gazette, he would have gone down as a loss to the county of Lincolnshire. Whilst that is entirely appropriate, it is equally appropriate to highlight the Harris connection.

Donald, Rest in Peace.

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