Tree is planted in memory of local roots

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Five of six children of a family born at West Caldhame gathered at the farm on Lour Estate recently to place a lasting memorial to their parents.

It was in 1910 that West Caldhame became the home of Peter McLaren and Mary Ann Paul. Peter and Mary married in 1911 at Lundie, and took up tenancy on Lour Estate, and it was here that their four children were born; George, 1912; Jeanetta, 1913; Ian, 1915 and Mary in 1922.

George worked on his father’s farm before emigrating to Swift Current, Saskatchewan, Canada in 1930 at the age of 17. He started working on farms, making his way to Delta, British Columbia, later studying engineering and working on projects like the Lions Gate Bridge in Vancouver. He returned to the farm at West Caldhame during the early part of the war and worked there until enlisting with the Royal Canadian Air Force. During the war Flight Officer McLaren served as an engineer on Lancaster and Halifax bombers. He completed 32 missions as a member of Snowy Owl Squadron. George married Doris Williams in 1945 and their son Ron lives in Delta, with his wife Helen. George died in 1989.

Jeanetta excelled at school, she married David Valentine in 1943 and was a member of the local rural for 83 years. Their children David and Kay were also born in Forfar.

Ian left school in 1930 which was the same year as his brother George set sail for Canada. From 1930 to 1935 he worked for Wm. Low Grocers in Forfar, first as a message boy. Due to a prolonged absence caused by a bout of measles, he lost his job. The company found him another position in the Perth store and in 1937 he moved to the Broughty Ferry branch then in 1940 to the Overgate branch. After serving int he Royal Air Force he returned to Perth and, with his wife Edna, in 1949 he set up business in Perth as a grocer and continued this trade until his retiral in 1978. Their son Graham was born in Perth. Ian died in 1999.

Mary, born in 1922, went on to farm in Perthshire, Angus and Aberdeenshire with her husband, she died in 1982.

A “family tree” was planted by family members as a memorial to the parents they had lost.