Gordon Aikman, Labour activist, motor neurone disease campaigner and friend to many across Scottish politics, has died aged 31.
Kezia Dugdale, Scottish Labour leader, paid this tribute:
“I am utterly bereft. Although we all knew time was precious, Gordon’s death comes as a shock.
I have lost a best friend and the world has lost a man who made it a better place. I will keep Gordon’s husband Joe and all his family in my thoughts and prayers. The wedding of Gordon and Joe was one of the happiest days of my life. I will treasure those memories.
I will miss Gordon’s smile, his laugh, his energy, his brilliant dance moves and terrible singing voice, and his positive outlook on life despite the hand he was dealt towards the end. I will miss his advice and I will miss campaigning with him to advance the causes dear to us. But most of all I will miss just spending time with my friend.
All of us in the Labour Party will be forever grateful for his commitment to our movement, particularly during his time working in the Scottish Parliament and his pivotal role in the Better Together campaign. His death will be mourned by all those who had the pleasure to work alongside him.
Although we grieve for Gordon, we must not allow our sadness to erase the many happy memories we have of his time with us. To respond to his MND diagnosis by raising more than £500,000 for research into this horrible disease so that others don’t have to suffer like he did should inspire us all.
Gordon’s constant determination to do good for others was an antidote to a world so full of fear and anger. I hope that will be his legacy.”