Comment: Help us to save lives in the Lothians

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maybe it is the infectious smile that beams out at you from those photographs of young Jamie Skinner.

Or perhaps it is the raw power of the young athlete with the perfect six pack who looked so unstoppable yet turned out, tragically, to be as vulnerable as the rest of us.

Then, again, it could be his boundless enthusiasm for football, a sport so many of us love, that makes it easy for those who never met him to feel a connection with Jamie.

But there is something about 13-year-old Jamie and his terrible death on a local football park last year that has touched people across the city.

It is easy to understand why those who knew and loved him – and there are many, many of them – want to do something in his memory.

But his story, and the courage and vision of his family who have decided that no-one else should needlessly suffer the same fate, has made a deep impression far beyond that.

Their dream of putting a defibrillator in every sports centre in the Lothians has the potential to save countless lives.

Lord Provost Donald Wilson is the latest to be moved by their appeal and decide that he has to do something to help.

In doing so, he is at one and the same time setting an example that hopefully others will follow, and also capturing the popular mood across the city.

The magnificent gesture by the Spartans Women football club to donate the gate receipts from this Sunday’s derby with Hibs Ladies at Ainslie Park, Pilton, to the foundation is typical of the generosity that our readers have been shown.

Donations big and small have poured in from the moment that we launched our Shockingly Easy campaign to support the family’s charity.

Our appeal takes its name from the fact that defibrillators are simple to use.

We want to thank from the bottom of our hearts everyone who has supported the appeal so far.

But we want more. Could you sponsor the Lord Provost when he runs his half-marathon? Or perhaps you could run in the event to help raise funds?

Or maybe you could simply turn up and pay for a ticket at Ainslie Park tomorrow to be thoroughly entertained by one of the weekend’s best football matches while doing your bit for the cause at the same time?

Whatever you can do, please help us to save lives in the Lothians.