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Members' Business: The Cycle to Syracuse to Mark the 30th Anniversary of the Lockerbie Disaster

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Members' Business: The Cycle to Syracuse to Mark the 30th Anniversary of the Lockerbie Disaster

October 02, 2018 17:00

 

That the Parliament remembers the 259 passengers and crew aboard Pan Am 103 and 11 residents of Lockerbie who were killed on 21 December 1988; recognises the response of the community and emergency services and shows its support for all who experienced pain and distress in the times that followed; notes that a number of commemorative events are planned; draws particular attention to the Lockerbie Memorial Tour 2018, which will see a team of cyclists undertake a continuous journey from Lockerbie Academy to Syracuse University as part of its desire to “complete” the journey that was never finished by the 35 students from the university who were on the flight; understands that the core team will consist of the tour organiser, Colin Dorrance, who will represent Police Scotland, Paul Rae, who will represent the Scottish Fire And Rescue Service, David "Heavy" Whalley BEM MBE, who will represent the RAF Mountain Rescue, David Walpole, who will represent the Scottish Ambulance Service and the "novice" cyclist Brian Asher, who will represent Lockerbie Academy, where he is the head teacher, and the wider community; acknowledges that the team also aims to raise money for the Dumfries and Galloway-based charity, Soul Soup, to support its outstanding work in providing mental health support to 12- to 25-year-olds to reduce their risk of suicide; thanks Scottish Power and the community businesses that are generously supporting the initiative; notes that the first stage of the journey will see over 1,600 pupils from the academy and the surrounding primary schools “crossing” the Atlantic by riding on exercise or their own bikes at school; understands that the second stage will be 70-mile public road cycle ride from the Memorial Cairn at the school to Edinburgh Castle by the core team, other cyclists from the town, the emergency services and members of the Ecclefechan-based cycling club, the Fechan Flyers; notes that the core team will then fly to Washington DC and cycle nearly 600 miles from the Lockerbie Cairn at Arlington National Cemetery to the university in time to join its annual Remembrance Convocation, at which they will make a presentation on behalf of the town, which will include a traditional shepherds crook fashioned by the Lockerbie Men’s Shed with wood sourced from Tundergarth; conveys its thoughts, prayers and best wishes to everyone marking the 2018 Remembrance Week; thanks the university on the important role that it plays in providing a focal point for many families, maintaining an archive and fostering links with the town, including the academy; thanks the university’s staff past and present, including Judy O’Rouke OBE, Kelly Rodoski and Professor Lawrence Mason, on their personal commitment; acknowledges the importance of the Lockerbie Scholarship, which sees two of the school’s pupils study at the university each year, with 58 scholars having taken part so far; believes that the cycle embodies the motto of the remembrance scholarship program, “look back and act forward”; welcomes the strong links that have emerged between the town, the university and friends in the United States; wishes his team well with the 3,238-mile cycle, and recalls the town’s motto, “Forward Lockerbie”.