Remembering the fallen from Oban and Argyll
THE annual remembrance services taking place around the region on Sunday proved the loyalty of those who were left behind and of those people who are mindful of the huge loss of life conflict and wars bring.
In Oban, a meaningful and sombre service was held in front of a large crowd. No- one complained as the rain bore down as they were acutely aware of those who had given their lives in much worse conditions.
As ever, the praise in Oban goes to the local branch of the Royal British Legion, and in particular to Iain and Lesley Blair- Simmonds, who over the years have built up the service with the help of many others.
Officiating at the service was now-retired Baptist minister Ian McFarlane. His gentle, calm demeanour over the proceedings allowed those present to focus on the loss of life at conflicts throughout the world.
Pipe Major Euan Dewar brought the two minutes’ silence to an end.
Poems, prayers and Bible readings preceded the laying of wreaths by a number of adult and youth organisations.
After the service, and despite the weather, people remained at the war memorial, sharing conversations with others who were laying crosses or poppies in remembrance of those who had died.
On the island of Mull, services were held in Tobermory and at Creich, near Fionnphort.
In Tobermory, the inclement weather did not stop a crowd making their way to the war memorial on Western Road.
Prior to a parade along the street from Tobermory Parish Church, the Reverend Duncan Macdonald led a service of remembrance.
The parade saw cadets and a pipers join together with a good crowd before wreaths were laid at the memorial by many, including the cadets, Guides and Brownies, the RNLI lifeboat team and by Councillor Mary-Jean Devon on behalf of Argyll and Bute Council.
At the other end of the island, three services took place at Creich and Bunessan, and on Iona, where pipers and short services were held at each place.
At Bunessan, community councillor Cameron Anson played the pipes.
He explained: ‘Last year the weather was terrible so at this year’s event the minister was much more organised.
‘He had laminated sheets, and he had asked another, Glen MacKellar, to hold an umbrella. ’
ocal man Rob Jones read out a list of the names of people who had died in conflicts in the First and Second World Wars, and he made special mention of former Bunessan Primary School pupil and Kintra resident Robert MacLaren, who died in Afghanistan.
This year the annual dash of pipers moving from one service to another on the Ross of Mull and Iona was abated as the gardener on Mull has joined Mull and Iona Pipe Band and was able to lead the service on Iona for the first time.
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Oban Pipe Band and Oban High School Pipe Band lead the parade from the Corran Halls along the Esplanade to the War Memorial.
Euan Dewar, pipe major, played at the end of the two minutes’ silence.
The Territorial Army take the salute after placing a wreath on the Oban War Memorial.
Cadets stand to attention as they pay their respects.
Police Inspector Mark Stephen places a wreath at the memorial.
Oban pipe bands brought dignity to the annual procession.