I was dumbstruck this afternoon to get news that Cllr Donald Macdonald, the SNP Councillor for Oban North had collapsed and died last night whilst on holiday in his beloved North Uist.
This is Donald - on the right - cheering his head off at the election result on May 6th, as featured in the "Dunoon Observer" coverage of the count in Lochgilphead.
There was also a picture of him on my election address , an indication of how central he and his wife Dot were to the SNP and its work in Oban and Argyll. He was also a great personal help and friend.
Just over the last few weeks we have been collaborating on things as diverse as water supplies and community cinemas. It is almost impossible to believe that he has been taken from us so suddenly.
Cathleen and I have stayed with Donald and Dot in Oban on several occasions. They were a wonderfully well matched and hospitable couple and held great parties, enjoyed and remembered by all!
He will be deeply missed by his family , his constituents, his fellow Gaels and all party members. He was a staunch patriot , never happier than when working for the future of Scotland and all those who live here ( particularly in and around Oban and in the islands). He was and will remain a strong inspiration to is all.