Hugh Mair, Shell Street, Stornoway

Intimation has been received by Mr James Mair, fishcurer, that his younger son, gunner Hugh Mair, Australian Field Artillery, was killed in action on 9th May. The sad news was conveyed in a letter received from Bombardier Murdo Macdonald, AFA, a native of Swordale, Stornoway. "It is with deep regret", he writes to Mr Mair, "that I bring myself to write these few lines concerning the death of your son, Hughie. I know there is nothing I can say that will alleviate the pain and the shock caused by this terrible blow, but being a great friend of Hughie's I think it is my duty to write and give a few particulars of regarding his death. Hughie, with the rest of the guncrew, was in action, and we were being shelled rather heavily, when a shell exploded in a bank close to the gun, killing Hughie and another gunner. It may be a little consolation for you to know that death was instantaenous and painless. He was not marked at all; it was the concussion that killed him. He is buried with some of his Battery comrades, and his grave is marked with a white cross, suitably inscribed. Hughie was liked and admired by every man in the Battery, and his death is felt keenly by all, so I ask you, Mr Mair, to accept deepest sympthy from myself and rest of his comrades.

Gunner Mair, who was 25 years of age, emigrated to Australia with five other Stornoway boys seven years ago, intending to take up work on the farm, but instead he took up a seafaring career. Soon after the outbreak of war, he joined the Australian Bridging Train, and he formed on fo the first boat's company to land at Suvla Bay and was in one of th elast boats to leave the shore at the evacuation of Gallipoli. He afterwards transferred to the Field Artillery and volunteered for service in France. Mr Mair's older son, Joseph, is also serving with the Australian contingent. He took part in the seizure of German New Guinea, and is meantime with his unit in  Egypt. Mr Mair and family have the deepest sympathy of the whole community in their sad loss.

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