Firefighter steps up for pal Brian

Firefighter Brian MacDonald, who hails from Oban, was moved to help Danica Fleming's family in the aftermath of the blaze.

Want to read more?

At the start of the pandemic in March we took the decision to make online access to our news free of charge by taking down our paywall. At a time where accurate information about Covid-19 was vital to our community, this was the right decision – even though it meant a drop in our income. In order to help safeguard the future of our journalism, the time has now come to reinstate our paywall, However, rest assured that access to all Covid related news will still remain free.

To access all other news will require a subscription, as it did pre-pandemic. The good news is that for the whole of December we will be running a special discounted offer to get 3 months access for the price of one month. Thank you for supporting us during this incredibly challenging time.

We value our content and access to our full site is only available with a  subscription. Your subscription entitles you to 7-day-a-week access to our website, plus a full digital copy of that week’s paper to read on your pc/mac or mobile device.  In addition, your subscription includes access to digital archive copies from 2006 onwards.

Just want to read one issue? No problem you can subscribe for just one week (or longer if you wish).

Already a subscriber?


Subscribe Now

A firefighter is taking on the height of Ben Nevis in full kit in memory of Oban’s Brian MacDonald who lost his battle with motor neurone disease last year.

Crew commander Grant Carnachan will commit to the challenge on a gym step machine wearing breathing apparatus on his back in the New Year.

He had planned it for December 28 but toughened Covid restrictions meant it had to be postponed.

The 37-year-old from Paisley hopes his New Year mission will raise as much money as possible to be split between The Fire Fighters Charity and MND Scotland in Brian’s memory.

Retired firefighter Brian MacDonald was just 43 when he passed away in July 2020.

Grant said: ‘It’s been a hard year for everyone, more so for charities and Brian’s family. So I wanted to do my bit and show that we are still thinking of him, that he is still making a difference and that his memory lives on.

‘I had wanted to do a climb but with everything going on I have not been able to. So Prolife Gym has kindly allowed me to use their step climber. I plan to climb 10,000 steps in my full fire fighting kit and with a BA set on my back. Just to put that into perspective, that is higher than Ben Nevis which is roughly 9,000 steps.

‘I know it’s been tough for everyone recently and people might not have a lot of money but every penny makes a difference.

‘Brian was a great guy and the charities helped him a lot. I wanted to do something to raise awareness and give back.’

Brian’s brother John said: ‘Brian would be so happy knowing that others are still raising money on his behalf for MND. Grant is doing him proud. It’s an awful disease. As Brian’s family, we are overwhelmed by people’s kindness and generosity at this time.’

To make a donation go to