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People Are Paying Heartfelt Tributes After The Death Of Scottish MND Campaigner Gordon Aikman

Aikman raised over £500,000 for motor neurone disease charities after he was diagnosed with the disease in 2014.

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Gordon Aikman meets Scotland's political leaders.
Danny Lawson / PA Archive/PA Images

Gordon Aikman meets Scotland's political leaders.

Scotland's political leaders and other high-profile figures have come together to pay tribute to Scottish motor neurone disease (MND) campaigner Gordon Aikman after his family announced he had died aged 31.

Aikman, a former Scottish Labour activist, was diagnosed with MND in 2014 while he was working as director of research for the Better Together campaign in the Scottish independence referendum.

His campaign, Gordon's Fightback, has raised over £500,000 for MND research since it was created after his diagnosis. He also persuaded Scotland's first minister to double the number of MND specialists in the country.

Aikman is survived by his husband, journalist Joe Pike, who announced his death on Friday morning.

My beautiful husband @GordonAikman has died. We are all heartbroken. He was my best friend, my soulmate and the lov…

Nicola Sturgeon paid tribute to the "incredible courage" Aikman showed in the face of his illness.

I'm so terribly sad to hear that @GordonAikman has died. He faced adversity with incredible courage and did so much good for others 1/3

Gordon's campaign to raise awareness of @MNDScotland and achieve better care and treatment for those diagnosed was inspirational. 2/3

We can honour @GordonAikman memory by donating here - My thoughts are with @joepike and his loved ones. 3/3

Scottish Labour leader Kezia Dugdale, a close friend of Aikman's, said she was devastated by the announcement.

Gordon was a beautiful man who existed to do nothing but good in this world - just devastated

Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson called Aikman a "brave and beautiful man".

So sad this morning to hear of the death of Gordon Aikman, a brave & beautiful man. My thoughts are with his husband @joepike & wider family

Former prime minister Gordon Brown called Aikman a "hero" and said his thoughts were with the campaigner's husband and family.

'Gordon Aikman was a hero and in his honour we will redouble our efforts into MND research. Our thoughts are with @joepike and family' GB

Tony Blair offered his "heartfelt condolences" to Aikman's family and friends.

My heartfelt condolences go to Gordon’s husband, @joepike, and their families and friends. It is a profound loss. TB

Scottish Greens co-convener Patrick Harvie said Aikman had "dedicated himself to making a difference".

So very sorry to learn of @GordonAikman's death. A lovely man, who dedicated himself to making a difference with the time he had.

Scottish Lib Dem leader Willie Rennie described Aikman as a "generous, determined, and gentle man".

Terribly sad. A generous, determined and gentle man. He has left a great legacy.

Former Better Together director Blair McDougall said he was "filled with sadness".

Filled with sadness that my friend & comrade Gordon Aikman is gone. Cannot comprehend how someone with such drive can be lost so young.

Journalist Owen Jones, who interviewed Aikman about his campaign in 2014, said he "made the world a better place".

RIP Gordon Aikman, an incredible young man whose life was cut short, but who was one of those rare people who made the world a better place

Former Scottish first minister Jack McConnell said Aikman was "a truly special person".

Gordon Aikman was a truly special person. Terribly sad news that he has died. Thoughts with @joepike today.

Labour MP Wes Streeting sent his love to Aikman's family and friends.

Desperately sad that @GordonAikman has died. Taken far too young, but what a meaningful life and legacy he leaves. Love to family & friends.

SNP MP Pete Wishart said the word "inspiration" could have been "invented" for Aikman".

So sad to hear of the death of Gordon Aikman. The word 'inspiration' could have been invented for him.

Journalist Chris Deerin said Aikman was a "brave, smart, funny man".

What an incredible legacy @GordonAikman leaves. A brave, smart, funny man, a brilliant columnist, who did a power o…

MND Scotland said it was "shocked and saddened" by the announcement.

Shocked and saddened by the death of #MND campaigner @GordonAikman. An inspiration for so many people.…

On New Year's Day, Aikman joked that he "didn't expect to see" 2017.

Oh hi 2017, I didn't expect to see you. Thanks for all the love and support that's helped get me here.

His final tweet, from Tuesday, thanked Dugdale for raising a further £20,000 for MND Scotland.


Jamie Ross is a Scotland reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Edinburgh.

Contact Jamie Ross at

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