A dog walker who died in an alleged attack in a Moray woodland was a “doting great-grandfather” who devoted his life to farming.
Frank Kinnis was walking Alsatian Sheeba in Birkenhill Woods, less than a mile from his home on the southern outskirts of Elgin, when he was allegedly attacked on Monday.
Two other people, a retired minister and his wife from the Grantown area, suffered serious head injuries in a separate incident.
The couple, both aged 70, remain in a stable condition in hospital.
Police last night confirmed a 35-year-old will appear at Elgin Sheriff Court today in connection with the alleged attacks.
Mr Kinnis, who was better known as Frankie, was described yesterday by friends as kind and generous.
The 83-year-old dairyman, who had recently battled back from serious illness, was well-known in the farming community and a keen bowler.
A statement released by his family asked loved ones and friends to treasure memories of him as he was, rather than his tragic death.
It read: “We are mourning the loss of our beloved husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather.
“He was a doting, warm-hearted and unfailingly dependable presence in each of our lives. There will also be fond memories of him among farming and bowls communities in Elgin, where he was well known and liked.
“We will fondly remember him as he was in life and ask everyone who knew him to make certain that it is these memories of him that endure.”
Mr Kinnis spent his entire working life on farms and continued to perform duties on Linkwood Farm, where he had worked for more than 20 years, until his final days.
Jimmy Simpson, who worked on the farm with him, paid tribute to his friend.
He said: “He was still loving what he had done almost all of his life. He had made an incredible recovery from a serious illness and had gone back working on the farm doing jobs here and there.
“Nobody would have a wrong word to say about Frankie. He was the nicest person you could hope to meet. He would come walking in the woods quite often with his Alsatian Sheeba.”
Farm owner Ian Robertson added: “He was an excellent employee – he couldn’t do enough for you. He was a dairyman but even after we stopped doing the dairy he was doing odd jobs here and there – he just liked being busy and never stood still.”
Police remained at the scene in the woods throughout yesterday and specialist officers could be seen searching the path leading from Mr Kinnis’ home to the woodland.
Superintendent Kate Stephen said: “Our priority at this point remains ensuring that the couple in hospital receive the best possible as well as supporting the families of all those involved at this extremely difficult time.
“Given how incredibly rare and unusual this incident is for such a well-used and loved area, officers will be carrying out additional patrols and providing an increased presence over the coming days.
“I am acutely aware of the impact this incident has had on the local community, and I include in that my own officers who not only work in the area but many of whom also live in the communities.
“Moray prides itself on being one of the safest places to live which makes this incident all the more tragic.”
A Church of Scotland spokesman last night said their “thoughts and prayers” were with Mr Kinnis’s family.
He added: “We can confirm that one of our Church of Scotland ministers and his wife were injured in an incident that occurred at Birkenhill Woods, south of Elgin.
“Both are now in hospital receiving medical treatment. Our thoughts and prayers are with them and also with the family of the man who very tragically died.”