A Letter to America

Dear Stephen & Amy

You were lost to your families, friends and loved ones at an early age, in the most tragic of circumstances, on the longest night of the year. The weather was really dreich and stormy that night over the town of Lockerbie. Now nearly 20 years have passed since I witnessed your deaths, and although we will never meet, I owe you so much.

Since then your families have befriended this Scottish family and through their grief and pain, they have been most generous to us and we have shared many, many happy memories.

Stephen your parents Jane & John Boland, your sister Kelly and your niece Emma who you will never get the chance to meet.

Amy your parents Betty & Garth Gallagher, brother Patrick, sister in law Marianne, niece Amy, nephew Hans, who you will never get the chance to meet, relatives Glenn and Carole Gallagher and Roberta.

All these relatives of you both have embraced this family, the love, the friendship we share proves that there is a significant amount of goodness in humanity and in the world in general, although sometimes it is difficult to find.

You are not there when we sit down to eat together, go shopping, stroll along the beach, swim in the sea or at the lake, work in the garden or canoe on the lake, but we always talk about you. Many memories have been shared with these Scottish strangers.

Although lost to your families and your communities, people who never met you owe you so much. We thank you for the love and friendship given to us by your families. We can never repay you, but as long as this bond goes on you will never be forgotten.

Walter, Sheila, Fiona & Anne Macdonald

Scotland 2008

“Then let us pray that come it may, As come it will for a’ that
That sense and worth oe’r a the earth, May bear the gree and and a that
For a’ that and a’ that, it’s comin’ yet for a that,
That man tae man, the world oe’r
Shall brother’s be for a ‘that”

Robert Burns