•Doddie with young Langholm Pipe Band member, Ruby Lamb

The former Scotland and British & Irish Lions rugby player, Doddie Weir, has died aged 52. Doddie was diagnosed with motor neurone disease in 2016, and created a charity foundation in 2017, My Name’5 Doddie, to raise funds for research into the disease. 

The charity foundation released a statement yesterday, November 26, to announce Doddie’s passing: “We are deeply saddened to share the news that our founder Doddie Weir has died. Doddie was a force of nature, a great family man, tremendous rugby player and loved and respected by all who knew him. Our thoughts are with Kathy, Hamish, Angus and Ben and we know you will join us in sending them our love and best wishes at this time.”

Bagpipe.news was contacted last night by piper and composer, Iain Bell, (also the creator of the Donald Drone cartoon) with this message about Doddie: “Although I’m not  a rugby fan, I was very much inspired by this giant of a man. We we met whilst I was piping at one of his charity events. I was inspired enough to write a wee tune for him. A remarkable gentleman and a national treasure. Bless him, Iain Bell.”

Thanks to Iain for sending the tune to share with bagpipe.news readers. Iain’s tune book, From Scots Borderer to Ulster Scot, was reviewed by Jenny Hazzard here, and Iain was recently featured in an article on bagpipe.news here.