LAST Thursday (August 25), a cheque for £5,112.50 was presented to committee members of the Western Isles Kidney Patients Association (WIKPA), but five young Lewismen who had raised the money on a sponsored walk of the West Highland Way, from Milngavie to Fort William, earlier this year.
The five were brothers John, Kenny and Jamie Duncan, sons of Donald Duncan of Cearn Sheilidh, and two of their friends, Kevin Maclean and Jim Morrison.
Young Ruby Duncan (aged three), who brightened up the photo session, was not on the walk!
The Duncan brothers’ father, Donald, has been on haemo-dialysis for some considerable time at the Western Isles Hospital.
After spending seven months in training with regular walks in the Castle Grounds, the team set off on April 1, which they hoped “would not prove an unfortunate choice of date!”
However, they completed the walk in the five planned stages, walking about 20 miles a day in very cold weather for the time of year.
On day horizontal sleet was blowing in their faces and “Rannoch Moor was a nightmare!” they said. There was snow lying by the side of the track: “Enough to make snowballs,” said John, which suggests there was time for a little recreational activity as well.
To undertake the challenge, the team wore very smart T-shirts with the WIKPA logo on the front and the five stages of their walk printed on the back, but they were also very well kitted out for the wintry conditions; however they did meet: “Some madmen in kilts,” said John unsympathetically, obviously considering his national dress very unsuitable for such an expedition.