Gary Coull and his two siblings will be taking part in Scotland's Memory Walk in honour of their Granny, Anna, who lived with Alzheimer's disease for around 10 years and sadly passed away in March of this year at the age of 91.
Gary Coull’s Granny, Anna Scott, was born in Aberlour but always strived to live in Dufftown, where she settled in the same house for over 50 years with her husband bringing up their 3 daughters. Anna was very proud to represent Dufftown and the surrounding area on Moray Council during the 1990s and became involved with the town’s twinning exchange with Mortlach in Canada.
Gary and his two siblings will be walking from Anna’s home town of Dufftown to Aberlour, where she was born, and back again which is around 13 miles. This momentous walk will be packed with landmarks that are reminiscent of Anna’s life, including the hall where she went dancing, the house she grew up in, past work places, and the signs she was asked to unveil for the twinning exchange.
Gary explains how much his inspirational Granny meant to him and his family, whilst emphasising her charismatic nature:
“I was very close to my granny, Anna Scott, and we very sadly lost her in March this year at the age of 91. She lived with Alzheimer's for around 10 years, so we saw first hand the impact this disease has upon someone.
My granny had been a Customs & Excise Officer, a local government councillor and a keen dancer, yet we saw a steady decline in her memory which was heart breaking for our family. It actually feels like we’ve lost her twice – once to Alzheimer's and once in death. She was always there for us, supported us all and loved us all dearly – and the feeling was definitely mutual.
My granny was my inspiration to get involved in local politics and I myself became a local councillor in 2007. We also danced a lot together, be that at local ceilidhs in Dufftown, Old Time Dances in Dufftown and Kirkmichael or in her kitchen any time music would come on! She is still the only person I’ve ever been able to dance a Quickstep with. The one thing she thankfully never lost was the twinkle in her eye and her loving smile. Even as the disease really took hold we could still see that sparkle”.
Gary explains why others should take part in the memory walk:
“Please do it! These vital funds go towards helping find a cure so we can eradicate this illness. The money also supports other people with this disease and their families through what is a very difficult time.
As well as raising funds for the wonderful support and research, Scotland's Memory Walk also gives you the chance to make sure that your family member is never forgotten by others. It’s up to us, their family, to keep their memory shining bright and this is a great way to do that”.
You can support Gary’s Memory Walk through his fundraising page by donating here