Lonely veteran Thomas Musgrove’s ashes to be scattered at sea

Thomas Musgrove's funeral. Picture: Lisa Ferguson

Thomas Musgrove's funeral. Picture: Lisa Ferguson

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DOZENS of people turned out for his funeral – yet most never knew him or had even heard his name until just a few days previously.

Now the ashes of veteran Thomas Musgrove, who died in a care home with no known friends or family, are to be scattered at sea.

Thomas Musgrove. Picture: supplied

Thomas Musgrove. Picture: supplied

Mr Musgrove died at the age of 67 in December after spending the final five years of his life at Gilmerton Care Home.

An appeal was launched in the Evening News for mourners to attend the Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) veteran’s funeral.

More than 70 people turned up on the day to ensure Mr Musgrove was given a suitable send-off.

And members of the public are now being asked to gather at Granton Harbour on Friday to watch as his ashes are laid to rest in the Firth of Forth.

The city council, RFA association and Forth Ports worked together to make sure Mr Musgrove’s final wishes are met.

A small ceremony will take place before Patrick Twist, the deputy harbour master at Forth Ports, takes the ashes out on a pilot vessel.

Mr Twist, who also served as a sea ferrier in the Navy, said: “Thomas was a local lad and he spent his whole life in Edinburgh.

“Apparently one of his last requests was that he be buried at sea and I am absolutely delighted to be able to help out – especially as I was a sea ferrier myself. I am going out on the vessel and will lower the ashes into the water.”

Mr Musgrove joined the Merchant Navy at the age of 16 – serving for 18 years and travelling as far afield as the Caribbean and Mediterranean Seas.

The RFA’s ships were vital in servicing the main fleet on its many duties around the world.

Councillor Ricky Henderson, health and social care leader, said: “It is heartening to hear how staff have gone above and beyond to ensure Mr Musgrove received the funeral he deserved and now, he will have a fitting naval send off.”

courtney.cameron@jpress.co.uk