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Monday 2 March 2009

Anniversary Mass for Mgr David Gemmell and launch of "David Gemmell Living
Memorial Fund".

Cardinal Keith O Brien will mark the first anniversary of the death of Mgr
David Gemmell at a special Mass in St. Mary's Cathedral, Broughton St,
Edinburgh on Thursday 5th March at 7.30pm. Mgr Gemmell died aged 54 in
Barcelona last year.

Following the Mass the "David Gemmell Living Memorial Fund". Will be
launched by his friend and former GP, Gerry McPartlin. The purpose of this
fund is to raise money toward a new L' Arche home in Scotland or
overseas.

L Arche homes provide support and care to adults with learning difficulties.
Gerry McPartlin was Fr. David s GP and close friend for many years. They
climbed together on numerous Munros as well as in the Alps and in the
Himalaya. They completed their rounds of the 284 Munros together in 1996,
in a group of five which is still the largest group known to have
completed the Munros at the same time.

To raise funds for the "David Gemmell Living Memorial Fund" Gerry will
undertake a sponsored second round of all the Munros. This will involve
climbing over 400,000 feet and walking more than 1,000 miles. Typically it
takes in excess of ten years to do all the Munros but Gerry is attempting
to do it in 3 “ 4 months, starting in Spring, 2010. If he succeeds, it is
likely that his will be the fastest Munro round by a pensioner “ he will
be 66.

Commenting on the launch of the Fund, Gerry McPartlin said;
Fr David has gone from us far too soon leaving so much grief. But his
untimely death at the age of 54, has also left a burning desire to do
something to remember him; to remember him not just in our hearts and
minds and prayers, but in some tangible and enduring way.

Adding his support to the Fund, Cardinal O Brien added;
It is very fitting that David should be remembered in this way, I am
delighted that a lasting legacy will keep his memory alive with a project
he would have approved and appreciated.

ENDS
Peter Kearney
Director
Catholic Media Office
5 St. Vincent Place
Glasgow
G1 2DH
0141 221 1168
07968 122291
pk@scmo.org
www.scmo.org

Notes to Editors:

1. It is planned that fund raising will run for 18 months, from March 2009
to August 2010. Supporters can sponsor Gerry McPartlin's Munro round at:
http://www.justgiving.com/gerrymcpartlin
Gerry McPartlin - 01520 744454 or 07900 471056

2. For more information about the fund see the L' Arche, Edinburgh website
http://www.larcheedinburgh.org.uk/ and follow the link to "David Gemmell
Fund" Contact: Judith Ellis, Office Manager at the L Arche UK office, on
01535 656186, or e mail info@larche.org.uk

3. Gerry McPartlin broke his back sledging in 1993. He subsequently
completed a sponsored walk in 1995 when he climbed 15 Munros in 12 hours,
raising over £6,000 for SCIAF. He has now retired to Applecross and is
Medical Officer to the Torridon Mountain Rescue Team.

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