Friday, 31 October 2014

Farewell to Hamish Macdougall

Earlier this afternoon I had the pleasure of joining a group of current and former staff from Gillespie's to bid farewell to Hamish, 37 years, almost to the day, after joining James Gillespie's High School. Apart from a spell in the early 00s as a Guidance teacher Hamish has taught Biology throughout his time at Gillespie's. I took the opportunity to share a few reflections on my experiences of Hamish. A gentle giant of a man, patient and caring to the nth degree, all who have been taught by him speak of his warmth and of a man who always saw the good in everyone. All say he was a wonderful teacher and more importantly, he cared for them as individuals and as young people preparing for an uncertain world. In his younger days Hamish played premier league rugby and, by all accounts, could also wield a cricket bat with some aplomb.

After I had spoken and presented him with a card and a cheque on behalf of staff, Hamish spoke warmly and fondly of his years at Gillespie's. Spanning almost four decades, Hamish regaled us with tales and shared many amusing stories from his days at the chalk face. Highlights included the camaraderie with colleagues and the many young people he made a difference to over the years.

We look forward to keeping in touch with Hamish over the years. I hope he enjoys time now to relax with  friends and chasing that wee white ball around the fairways.

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