Page last updated at 15:57 GMT, Wednesday, 23 July 2008 16:57 UK

Soldier remembered 36 years later

George Lockhart
Guardsman George Lockhart was shot by a sniper in 1972

An Arbroath solider who was shot and killed in Northern Ireland has been remembered in his home town - almost 36 years after his death.

More than 100 people marched to pipes and drums to the local war memorial for the official dedication of a plaque to Scots Guardsman George Lockhart.

The 24-year-old was hit in the back by a sniper in Londonderry in 1972.

The Scots Guards Association has been campaigning for about three years to have his name added to the memorial.

The authorities had resisted their calls in previous years because Guardsman Lockhart had not been killed in war but during the troubles in Northern Ireland.

He was a company storeman and therefore was not required to go out on patrol, but he volunteered.

On 23 September 1972 he was shot by the sniper. He died in hospital on 26 September with his parents by his side.

The Reverend Angus Smith told the crowd gathered for the dedication it was important to remember his sacrifice.

He said: "We do not show as much support to our armed services as we ought to, but one thing that we do is this - we never forget those who died in the service of their country.

It doesn't matter how far back you go, anybody who's been killed in action should be remembered - never forgotten
David Cuthill
Scots Guards Association

"Guardsman Lockhart freely gave his service and freely he gave his life."

Guardsman Lockhart's company commander, Colonel John Clavering, said: "It's rather nice that it's bringing to memory what went on in Northern Ireland.

"We hear a lot, quite rightly, about Iraq and Afghanistan, but in that year alone [1972] in Northern Ireland, 175 servicemen were killed and I think this tends to be forgotten.

"So apart from it being a very nice thing to do something in memory of him, I think for the bigger picture, it's no bad thing that we have this memorial today."

And after years of campaigning, Chairman of the Dundee and Angus branch of the Scots Guards Association, David Cuthill, said he was "fair-chuffed" this day had finally arrived.

"Everybody that's lost their life should be remembered on the memorials in the towns and villages that they lived in and people can see that they've been recognised for what they did for their country," he said.

"It doesn't matter how far back you go, anybody who's been killed in action should be remembered - never forgotten."

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