The "Forgotten Fourteen"

Vigil ... Kier Hardie at new memorial in Forres
Day thirteen

Vigil ... Kier Hardie at new memorial in Forres

FORMER Marine Keir Hardie is staging a one-man demo at a war memorial in a bid to save RAF Lossiemouth

Keir, 58, has so far braved 13 days of rain and snow to stand in protest against defence cuts which have already doomed the nearby RAF Kinloss base.

He launched his vigil at the new plinth in Forres, dedicated to the 14 Kinloss airmen who were killed in the 2006 Nimrod crash over Afghanistan. Last night he said: "Somebody has to stand up somewhere."

Each day of his two-week protest - which ends today - is designed to honour one of the victims of the jet disaster.

Dad-of-one Keir described the Government's decision to axe Kinloss and now threaten Lossiemouth as "madness". He added: "It insults the men and their families."

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Day Fourteen

continued`....... The "Forgotten Fourteen" the story.......


Day One

After the Forres Rememberance Day Parade on Sunday, when the troops and crowds had left, I stood by the new memorial for an hour. I have my own protest placard. It is A4.

It says;
David cameron`s Forgotten Fourteen. The Defence Review is Wrong; Tactically, Economically, Morally.  Save RAF Kinloss & RAF Lossiemouth.
 
I also got to speak with some of the families of the 14. It was heartbreaking beyond belief. I am an ex Royal Marine, I dont mind the cold.  I`m pushing 60 but am able to give several hours each day until the 25th of November. I`m doing several hours per day for 14 days. This is a day each for the fourteen.



I only live a few hundred yards away and, although I work part time for Ark Housing as a Support Worker, I am glad to give my time to be part of the necessary fight. I will carry on doing a few hours on my todd each day. I am using a small A4 placard so that people have to come close to read it and then they can be aware of the importance of the memorial. If RAF Kinloss was so important 4 years ago to give the Nimrods and the men who died how can it now be just an unnecessary expense and thus be closed.?


It is an insult to fourteen dead servicemen. And, of course, to those who still serve.
Keep your powder dry. Keir Hunter Hardie RM Rtd.

*******

p.s. my protest is a silent protest because if I start ranting at people I`ll lose it, probably start swearing and I dont want to demean the dignity of the memorial. I would appreciate any support, whether here or directly to the MOD.......

I am writing to ask if any of your reader`s know what will become of the commemerative stain glass church window in the Church at RAF Kinloss and how will relatives be able to retain the connection with their bereaved ones if the station is closed?
  
  I would also like to quote the following;
 
1944. The Under Secretary of State for Air, The Right Hon Harold Balfour MP said
 
"Hats off to Coastal Command who, day and night, whatever the weather, fly the oceans on the allotted duties....Theirs is the physically arduous and equally hazardous job of flying far out in the front Line..."
 
2010. The deputy Prime Minister,Nick Clegg. MP said
 
"Were not going to abandon the families and communities which are dependent for their jobs and their livlihood on those bases."
 
2010. The prime Minister, Rt Hon David cameron MP said
 
"RAF Kinloss would no longer be required."
 
2010. Keir Hardie, RM Rtd says
 
     The Prime Minister has taken the Great out of Britain and the United out of Kingdom. He has insulted the servicemen of Moray who died in WW2, The 2 who died in 1995. The 7 who died in 1995. The 14 who died in 2006. My personal thanks and sympathies go to all of you families who have given so much. I understand your hurt at the contemptuous manner in which you have been treated. I also respect and admire your quiet strength and determination. We are all proud of you.

*******

Friday went well. I was there till half 3. Spoke to many people. A young couple with a sprog appeared. She had brought me a coffee to keep me warm. They had just moved up to Kinloss and bought a house.. he`s in the RAF . now they dont know what their future will be. So,  I`m happy to be here.

My last day is next saturday (27th) and, by happy co-incidence - it is when the memorial is being Dedicated. One of the widows, who was a prime mover of the fund to get the memorial came for a chat. She has asked me to attend the Dedication. Off soon to do todays stint. then only 7 days to go. Roll on summer.

Regards Keir.