Brother’s tribute to former Lanark Cornet

Ian Gray
Ian Gray

Leonard Gray paid tribute this week to his younger brother, former Lanark Cornet Ian Gray who was found dead in his home last Thursday:

‘Ian was born at home in November 1955 in Quarryknowe. His father, John, was unknown to most people in Lanark; his mother was Dorothy Haynes, a well-known author.

Ian attended Lanark Grammar School and pursued a career in banking.

He joined the Royal Bank of Scotland in Lanark, where his boss was Walter Nisbet. He moved from Lanark to Wishaw then to Dalbeattie.

Thereafter he joined Lloyds Bank as an asset development manager where his knowledge of computing gave him an advantage.

He then transferred to be a union liaison person, seconded by the bank.

Ian took early retirement from the bank, hopefully to be headhunted.

This did not happen and I think this was a great disappointment to him.

His bank experience was in demand by local organisations. Ian became treasurer of many trusted organisations in Lanark.

The list is impressive and inludes: Lanark YMCA during its resurgence in the 1970s; the Millennium Committee in 2000; the 850th sub committee in 1990; and being auditor to Lodge Old St John no 21.

He also served as lighting engineer to the Panto Club.

Ian took charge of the Lanimer sports and entertainment finances, and from that generated new forms of income for the Lanimers.

First was a scratch card lottery, then the Silver Club. He had the ability to record all the participants and when the draw took place in William Low’s in the Castlegate, they could announce the winner right away.

Ian was the first Silver Club Lifetime Member — I have his certificate number 0000.

As brothers with an age difference of four years, playing together was difficult.

When I was 12, he was eight, and there was not a lot in common.

As we got older the difference vanished and we became pals, always relying on Ian’s financial expertise.

He loved sports, but was worse than me.

We played football every Saturday with Jack Orr’s pub team, who put up with us for years.

He tried golf with equal inability, but he was always admired for his enjoyment, enthusiasm, and his sense of humour.

He was Lord Cornet in 1993, which was the centenary of the Lanimer Procession. What an honour!

Ian suffered depression in the latter years of his life.

No-one wants to talk about this disability. People care, but do not know what to do.

Ian died at home, just as he was born.

We need to know how to deal with this problem better than: “Have you seen your brother?” We are all stuck with what to do, me included! Well

done Ian! You have left us lots!’