Can­cer aware­ness be­ing built into Stu­art’s legacy

Evening Telegraph (First Edition) - - Uk World Today -

THE name Stu­art Scott may not im­me­di­ately ring any bells, but walk through Dundee and his legacy is hard to miss.

He was in the con­struc­tion busi­ness all his days, from be­ing a teenage heat­ing en­gi­neer to ul­ti­mately be­com­ing a pro­fes­sional project man­ager who helped bring the DCA and the new Over­gate to Dundee, while ac­claimed projects in Ed­in­burgh, Birm­ing­ham and Dublin also bear his mark.

A dad and a grand­dad, Stu­art was a gen­tle­man, skilled and quiet. When kid­ney can­cer claimed his life in Au­gust 2016, it was a dev­as­tat­ing blow for his fam­ily.

Stu­art, 69, and his wife, Lynda, had been to­gether since they were teenagers and he doted on his daugh­ters, Gail and Leigh, and adored the grand­chil­dren.

But now, his name is liv­ing on in an­other way, thanks to the tire­less char­ity work of his youngest daugh­ter, Gail Robert­son.

She has led a drive that has not only raised thou­sands of pounds for Kid­ney Can­cer Scot­land, but she’s also been ap­pointed as a fundrais­ing man­ager for the or­gan­i­sa­tion.

“Dad was born in Bridge of Allan and moved to Lawrence Street, Dundee, be­fore set­tling in the West End,” said Gail.

“He was fit and ac­tive, but started feel­ing un­well. He was tired, feel­ing cold all the time and los­ing weight.

“He went to the doc­tor and ini­tially they thought he was suf­fer­ing from stress.”

From di­ag­no­sis to the fam­ily hav­ing to say good­bye was lit­er­ally a few weeks.

“You don’t quite get over some­thing like that,” said Gail. “So,, what do you do?”

The fam­ily had been sup­ported through­out by Kid­ney Can­cer Scot­land and Gail de­cided to fo­cus on help­ing them and es­tab­lish­ing a legacy in mem­ory of her dad.

“Kid­ney can­cer is the seventh most com­mon can­cer in the UK, with 33 peo­ple di­ag­nosed ev­ery day,” said Gail. “In­ci­dences of it have more than dou­bled in the last 40 years and three-quar­ters of those di­ag­nosed are peo­ple aged 60 and over.”

The first fundrais­ing ef­fort Gail or­gan­ised was to trek the West High­land Way.

“Dad did it when he was in his early fifties, so it seemed a fit­ting project,” said Gail.

She en­listed her hus­band, Gor­don, brother-in-law, Sea­mus, and five pals for the hike, and they were ably as­sisted by Jim Smyth, a friend of the fam­ily, who drove the sup­port van.

“It’s 96 miles and we did it in three days, just like my dad did — but it was tough,” said Gail.

The trek raised £8,000 and was pre­ceded by a din­ner dance in the In­ver­carse Ho­tel.

It’s a tes­ta­ment to Stu­art’s char­ac­ter that the dance raised £16,000 and Gail will be round­ing up the same team who tack­led the West High­land Way to com­plete all four Kilt­walks dur­ing 2018, with am­bi­tious plans afoot to climb Mont Blanc.

“Dad was a lovely man, a dig­ni­fied man, and I feel he’s still with us,” said Gail.

“I would urge any­one who feels any of the symp­toms as­so­ci­ated with kid­ney is­sues to speak to their doc­tor.

“I’m go­ing to con­tinue do­ing what I can to raise funds for re­search into this — it is go­ing be my dad’s legacy.” Pic­ture shows, front: Gordie Robert­son and Rachel Flynn. Back (from left): Sea­mus Hughes, Colin Mac­don­ald, Re­becca Hutcheson, Cara Lawrie and Gail. Kneel­ing, cen­tre: Lori Han­lon.

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