Hundreds Gather For Funeral Of Veteran With No Known Family

Indrani Sengupta
In a stunning demonstration of respect and compassion, over 500 people attended the funeral service for a veteran soldier who died without any known family or friends.

 Alex McDougall died without any known family or friends. But that doesn't mean he was alone.

The veteran who had served his country for 30 years, survived countless shootings and starvation on limited rations, succumbed to dementia and cancer early this June. He was 77 years old.

He had been “married to his job,” and thus had never had a family of his own. He had no children or grandchildren to mourn him.

So the staff at Beeston Lodge Nursing Home, where McDougall spent his last days, appealed to the public, to anyone with any link to the armed forces, to come pay their final respects.

They just didn't want McDougall to go unmourned, his life uncelebrated.

But they didn't expect the response to be so overwhelming.

Keith Brown, who conducted the service, remarked:

“I expected to be here with four people, not 400.”

In fact, the number was much more: over 500 mourners, young and old, convened at the funeral service in Bramcote, Nottinghamshire, to honor a man they knew only by his most honorable reputation.

There was even a bagpiper to lead the hearse, as standard bearers lined the route.

For a man who joined the army at the young age of 21, after losing his parents to a car crash, it's hard to imagine a more suitable—or picturesque—send-off. Brown certainly thinks so:

“It is a remarkable show of affection for one soldier, so God bless you all for that.”

McDougall's ashes will be taken back to his native Glasgow, and scattered at Rangers Ibrox Stadium. 


Read more: Last WWI Veteran Laid To Rest In Military Funeral

Banner image credit: Aisha Morrell