Adam honoured for his dedicated service

Donald Wilson presents the medal to Adam Carruthers
Donald Wilson presents the medal to Adam Carruthers
Have your say

Edinburgh’s longest serving Legion Scotland Standard Bearer has been awarded the British Empire Medal for reaching 50 years of service.

Adam Carruthers, 80, joined the army aged 18 and served for more than five years in the Scots Guards.

During the Second World War he was deployed to the Suez Canal in Egypt, where two of his battalion were shot and killed guarding military bases.

He has been a member and Colour Bearer for Legion Scotland for more than half a century and has been at the forefront of many ceremonial events, including the Queen’s coronation.

Despite being born in Kelso, Mr Carruthers has lived in Edinburgh for 30 years and now considers the city as home.

He lives in Gilmerton with wife Celeste.

Both of his brothers served during the Second World War and his late father, Robert, was also a veteran of the First World War.

Speaking after receiving his medal at the City Chambers, Mr Carruthers said: “My father never talked about his experiences but I think that was quite common back then.

“Like most who serve in the forces my family didn’t do it for any kind of recognition.

“When you are still a teenager those things probably don’t affect you at the time.

“Now when I think back it’s hard to come to terms with how terrible it really was.”

Since retiring from the regiment Mr Carruthers has remained active within the army community. He is a drill instructor and trainer to the Tri Service Cadet community and has helped develop a ten-week programme for young cadets.

After receiving his award last month, Mr Carruthers was invited to open the Garden of Remembrance in Princes Street Gardens earlier this week. He and serving military personnel laid wreaths at the ceremony, which was attended by the families of servicemen and women and Lord Provost Donald Wilson.

The veteran suspected he may have been nominated for the award but kept it secret from all those around him right up until the day it was announced at a National Board of Trustee’s meeting in the Capital in June.

Mr Carruthers was awarded the medal as part of the Queen’s birthday celebrations in June and was one of 21 people from Edinburgh to make the Honours list.

Chief executive officer of Legion Scotland Kevin Gray said: “It’s very important to help keep alive the memory of those who lost their lives in the defence of our country and those who have come home whose lives are changed forever as a result of their service.

“This year during the centenary of the First World War it is especially poignant as we remember those who gave their life 100 years ago and since up to those serving in present-day conflicts.”