This is one of the poems in Ranald's selection...
~ Author Unknown ~
I would rather have one
From the garden of a friend
Than to have the choicest flowers
When my stay on earth must end.
I would rather have one
In kindness said to me
Than flattery when my heart is still
And life has ceased to be.
I would rather have a
From friends I know are true
Than tears shed round my casket
When this world I've bid adieu.
Bring me all your flowers
Whether pink, or white, or red;
I'd rather have one blossom now
Than a truckload when I'm dead.
I got in an email from his son Andrew...
I am e-mailing you on behalf of my father Ranald.
His health has been deteriorating over the past few weeks and on his
90th Birthday (4/4/16) he was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer.
At this time he is relatively well, has full rational thought and whilst
he is unable to use a PC he can speak and is not in pain.
He is keen to let you know of his situation.
I or my sister Fiona will update you as the days/weeks go on.
I had wondered why I'd not heard from him in
a wee while as he would phone on an odd occasion to me in Canada and
usually would post up the odd message in our community and send an odd
email with an interesting comment or two.
I'd often meant to email him to see if he
was ok but somehow never got around to it.
I don't remember when I first met him but it
was at my then home in Grangemouth where I ran my computer dealership.
I think he came in to see if we could help him with a computer issue and
he then seemed to adopt us as a kind of second home. We all loved
having him around. He introduced us to having a sausage roll put
into a buttered roll as that way he explained the pastry stayed in the
roll rather than fall all over the place. When we were really busy he
would deliver computers to BP for us and do other errands for us.
He always had wee stories to tell which were always fun and instructive
to listen to and I have to say he brightened our day.
He was always good friends of our neighbours
as well and he and David Bolton used to have a great wee chat together.
I did visit his home a few times and met his wife who died a few years
ago. I know he was very proud of his son and daughter and his son is now
a retired police officer. His brother Donald also died a few years
Ranald was also a mechanic for Ecurie Ecosse who twice won one of the most prestigious and gruelling of races: the Le Mans 24-hour endurance classic. You can learn about them and see a picture of Ranald on their page at http://www.electricscotland.com/lifestyle/ecurie_ecosse.htm
At time of writing his
son Andrew and his wife are staying with him at his home in Falkirk.
Andrew is looking to build a new home in the Highlands and wanted to get
his father to go live with them. However Ranald wasn't too sure as
that would mean he'd be far from health care. It's good that they
are with him at this time.
He was always doing we things for all kinds
of people from folk in our community to people he just read about.
Someone looking for some information on a place in Scotland would often
receive an email from Ranald providing information and often a picture
of the place. He would also meet people that came to Scotland for
a visit and in that way they could be assured of seeing a friendly face.
All in all he is a very
kind person that cares for people and he wasn't beyond pulling someone's
leg and having a fun time with them.
He was in the RAF as an
engineer and served in the Far East. He was also an insurance
investigator and he often talked about some of the cases he followed up
on. He was a son of the manse and often went for long walks with
his Brother up in the Highlands and his knowledge of Scotland was such
that he was able to share wee stories of many places in Scotland.
As I don't have a Rose in my garden I
thought he might enjoy this wee picture and story on:
White Rose of Scotland (Scots Rose, Burnet Rose)
Ranald passed away at 3am GMT on 1st May 2016.