A Culter family are appealing for help after Storm Babet caused a tree to crush a beloved memorial bench commemorating two young people killed in a car accident.
Sally Wight, sister of Russell Horne, got in touch after discovering the special place where the family congregate to remember the late 21-year-old was completely destroyed.
“We have a friend who maintains the memorial bench for us, and he let us know that sadly, after nearly 20 years, the bench is no more.”
A place to remember, gone
There in memory of Russell and his friend Steven Reid, the seat is by the Dee on Lovers’ Walk, Culter.
It provided a place for the community, and family and friends, to honour the “two lovable lads”.
The boys lost their lives when they got into a car with a third friend, Michael Mason. Michael, who didn’t have a driving licence, borrowed a car to head out from Peterculter to Banchory to see a girl.
The Vauxhall Vectra they were in crashed head on with a bus. It burst into flames on the A93 North Deeside Road, near Drumoak.
It was just minutes from Russell’s 22nd birthday.
Plea for help
Sally hopes Aberdeen City Council may help with the cost of replacing the bench. She believes damage may only have occurred because an already damaged tree hadn’t been moved out the way. As the storm persisted the tree shifted again, crushing the seat.
“We obviously know that it was a significant storm. Storm Babet caused damage all over the region. It’s just sad that we have lost one of the last memorials we have to Russell.”
A friend of the family has emailed Aberdeen City Council on their behalf petitioning for help to replace the bench.
An Aberdeen City Council spokesperson said: “We are aware of a fallen tree beside the memorial bench. It will now be removed after the tree squad has completed priority clearance work following Storm Babet.
“Enquiries about memorial benches can be made to email@example.com. We would encourage the family to get in contact to provide more information.”