We regret to learn that Pte Norman Macdonald, Gordon Highlanders, son of Norman Macdonald, 4 Portvoller, was killed in action on 27 April 1917. Deceased, aged only 19, enlisted a year last August and has been at the front the past 12 months. His father and younger brother are serving in the Royal Navy. Two years ago, his uncle, Sgt Donald Macdonald, fell at Hill 60.
In a later edition, the Gazette writes:
Particulars of the death of private Norman Macdonald, Gordons , son of Malcolm Macdonald, 4 Portvoller, are now to hand. Writing to the late soldier's mother, Sergt. Matheson says:
The Gordon Highlanders have had much hard fighting since the beginning of this great offensive, and although we have proved ourselves full of the fighting spirit, as the men from the North of Scotland always did, we have suffered severe casualties and many a brave Highland soldier now lies peacefully in his everlasting rest. It was when we went into action about the beginning of May in face of terrific shell fire that your son Malcolm was struck. I saw him getting wounded about 4pm, and as the only other Lewis lad in his company I though it my duty to dress him up as best I could, and help to get him attended to as soon as possible. He spoke Gaelic to me all the time and I tried to cheer him up. At nightfall the stretcherbearers bore him from the trenches and he was still smiling. But alas! his wounds were too severe and it was with deep regret I heard of his death the following day. He was greatly admired by everyone and he and I were great friends. I came from Uig and he from Point and we had many a conversation in Gaelic. His body was decently buried in the little village of Filloy well behind the firing line and a cross marks his grave. I can assure you his death came as a shock to me, but what must be the anguish of the heart of the mother who lost her son. Accept my most sincere sympathy in your sore bereavement.