Dad of young Edinburgh doctor who died in freak skiing accident thanks memorial appeal supporters

More than £25,000 donated to charity in less than a week

Wednesday, 22nd January 2020, 4:55 pm
Updated Wednesday, 22nd January 2020, 6:54 pm
William Reid

A GRATEFUL dad has thanked Evening News readers for helping boost a charity appeal in memory of his talented son who died in a freak skiing accident.

Trainee surgeon William Reid, 25, plunged over a 30-foot cliff on a family holiday in the French Alps earlier this month.

Now kind-hearted donors have pledged more than £25,000 in less than a week to rebuild a school in Zambia - with plans to rename it after William.

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Young Scottish doctor dies in freak skiing accident in French Alps

“Thank you for your help in this in support of trying to do something positive after a tragic event,” said dad Dr Hamish Reid, 56.

“We’re trying to draw something positive from William’s death and find a purpose going forwards.”

Money raised by the appeal will go to the Baraka Community Partnerships charity working in the East African country where William visited seven years ago.

“I’ve been liaising closely with the charity and I’m looking forward to working with them on the project - I see it as a long-term project to be involved in,” said Hamish.

William had just enjoyed a lunch with girlfriend Kirsty, also 25, step-brother Murray, 20, Hamish and step-mum Anne, 51, when tragedy struck in the resort of Avoriaz.

He was skiing back to his apartment with Kirsty and Murray when he is thought to have taken a wrong turn.

“astonishing response”

“The whole family, Kirsty as well, have been deeply moved by people’s generosity - getting us to over £25,000 so far in the first week,” added Hamish.

“That will make an enormous difference to the small community over in Zambia - it’s fantastic to think it will make such a difference.”

Money will help rebuild the Kandindi school which has been educating children with no state assistance for more than 40 years under a thatched roof with holes and no walls.

Children learn on desks of bricks stacked on the floor with no books, pens or paper.

The cash will fund a new classroom, school toilet block, introduce sports facilities and well as providing desks and books among other much-needed supplies.

An initial fundraising target of £20,000 was smashed within 24 hours with more than 300 donors digging deep.

It also emerged the charity are in talks with the community about the possibility of renaming the school The William Reid School.

Andy Mckee, founder Baraka Community Partnerships said: “We’re delighted to be able to help in some small way to honour the memory of William, who was clearly a much loved and outstanding young man.”

“The response to the request to donate funds to this school in William's memory has been astonishing.”

Anyone wishing to donate can do so at the In memory of William Reid fundraising page.